Cinema Borealis

During the summer of 1989, Chicago's Lincoln Park was the site of an incredible cinematic event, Cinema Borealis. Three evenings of great movies projected outdoors on one of the largest screens ever erected in the area. A 70' x 30.5' screen was set up with a full 6-track stereo sound system. Two of the films were presented in 70mm, the other in 35mm. The event was free to all who wished to enjoy these nocturnal projections under the stars. Only the third photo conveys a sense of the enormity of the screen. Keep it in mind when viewing the others.

The films were:

"Ran" (Friday, 7/28/89) The Kurasawa classic. In 35mm 1.85 / Dolby Stereo

"2001: A Space Odyssey" (Saturday 7/29/89) In 70mm Super Panavision / 6- track sound

"Days of Heaven" (Sunday 7/30/89) In 70mm (1.85 blow-up)/6-track discrete Dolby

The Site (booth in the distance)

The Screen

How big? Look for the human. Note the 10 subwoofers!

Surrounded by surrounds!

Behind the screen? JBL's!


Ran Note the silent generator

Ran Check that skyline!

Norelco AAII Would you trust "2001" to anything less?

Payout "Days of Heaven" rolling

Full Load! That's "Days" running; "2001" reposing

And it RAINED during "2001"


Cinema Borealis photos copyright 1989 Steve Kraus
All vague on-screen images are copyright by each film's rights holders

Cinema Borealis

Was a project of James Bond and Randolph Street Gallery
With assistance from Mark Gulbrandsen, Rent-Com, Inc., Inter-Sonics Inc., Dolby Laboratories, JBL, Chicago Sun Times, 3 Penny Cinema, and Documentary Film Group at the University of Chicago

Thousands enjoyed the Friday and Sunday night showings. Unfortunately, Saturday's presentation of the mint-condition 70mm print of "2001" was marred by rain. Not just a little rain: It poured! Nevertheless a couple of hundred hardy soles braved the weather with umbrellas and lean-to's to view the Kubrick classic. There was talk of running it again on Monday night but NIMBY's complaining about noise eliminated that option. However, like in baseball, there's always next year.

Technical Details

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