New owner to shore up Lorraine

From October 13, 2008:

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Interview on Champaign Web site with Joshua Caudle, the new owner of the Lorraine Theatre in Hoopeston, IL.


Editor’s note: I’ll let the inquisitive ones hop on over to SmilePolitely and decide for themselves what they think about Mr. Caudle who, according to this article, comes to central Illinois from San Francisco with a background in movie exhibition. While his verbalized intents seem noble, evidence of corporate training drips from every single sentence and makes his liberal use of “our” and “we” – meaning, the Lorraine Theatre and the Hoopeston citizenship – sound hollow. At least with a personable entrepreneur like The Avon Theater‘s Skip Huston, you know he gives a hoot as an individual and a businessman. This fellow needs to talk more like a human being and less like a press release – and then back it up by rejuvenating the Lorraine successfully – before I’ll relax my wary eye.

Readers should also note how Caudle deflects the author’s query about booking more independent films at the Lorraine, which I actually would expect to be a low priority given her geographic location. I suspect that folks living in blue-collar and farming communities, like Hoopeston and its neighbor towns, are not going to give two shits about the likes of RELIGULOUS or TROUBLE THE WATER. Even though, in our humble opinion, they should.

I’d also be curious to find out why the tenure of prior owner Kevin Alvarez fizzled out so quickly. It seems like only yesterday that Alvarez announced his modest aims after acquiring the Lorraine from Greg Boardman, who might be credited with first giving her a new lease on life. Let’s see how well Caudle can further restore her glory.

~ Jason Pankoke

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