The Film Society of Lincoln Center’s landmark state-of-the-art Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, a multi-screen theater and cultural venue opened to the public in the heart of Lincoln Center’s campus in June of 2011.
The Film Center, named after the late Film Society board member, and award-winning filmmaker and designer Elinor Bunin Munroe, was part of the 16-acre Lincoln Center campus redevelopment and designed by David Rockwell and Rockwell Group who also collaborated with Diller Scofidio + Renfro on the exterior. The 17,500 square foot venue will house 2 theaters, an amphitheater and a café. The 140-seat Francesca Beale Theater shows specialty film releases, and the intimate 85-seat Howard Gilman Theater screens a combination of new film releases and special programs. The Amphitheater, with a 152” Panasonic Plasma screen (the largest of its kind on public display in the country) houses lectures, panels and educational programs.
The Film Center allows the Film Society of Lincoln Center to extend its reach in the following ways:
► The Film Center enables the Film Society to offer the public a complete cultural experience – the opportunity to see films; experience installations, emerging digital technologies and digital art which will be featured in the amphitheater; participate in lectures and panels; attend live presentations and performances, and midnight programs; visit a Wi-Fi equipped café open throughout the day from early morning breakfasts to late night snacks; and find a setting to gather together with friends and families or encounter other culturally minded visitors.
► The Film Center is a space where the Film Society is exploring new ways that filmmakers and other artists are using the moving image, particularly transmedia storytelling that embraces other platforms and formats, as well as projections, installations and exhibitions.
► The Film Center allows the Film Society to partner with schools and educators for educational programs and special screenings for adults and children.
► The Film Center is equipped with the latest internet technology to facilitate real-time participation and interaction at an international level, making it uniquely accessible in global terms. The Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, a collaboration between the Film Society and Lincoln Center, is a state-of-the-art, interactive media destination with acoustic and aesthetic elements. David Rockwell and the Rockwell Group artfully turned existing, underutilized office space and a parking garage into a series of street-level spaces that will catch the eye of visitors with cinema-inspired design and the comforts of modern theaters.
Pedro Almodóvar addresses a packed Amphitheater in an NYFF panel. Photo by Olga Bas.