Sometimes it’s not the movie that matters, but where you see it.

| February 17, 2011 | 3 Comments

Popcorn stand at Studio 35 in Clintonville.

Popcorn stand at Studio 35 in Clintonville. Photo: WOSU

Is it possible that there is a place where you can hang out with your neighbors, play Guitar Hero on the big screen, fall in love, go to a beer tasting of some of the best microbreweries, and still manage to catch a great flick?  There is.  It’s Studio 35 Cinema and Draft House, and Clintonville is proud to claim the independent theater as its own.

This single-screen theater has been a landmark in the community for over 70 years.  Through multiple names and owners, Studio 35 has thoroughly ingrained itself in the hearts of movie goers and those that call Clintonville home.

Janet Mushrush, a resident of Clintonville, says it quite succinctly: “What I like most about Studio 35 is that it’s home.  It’s where I grew up, and even though I didn’t always live here [Columbus], when I came home I didn’t move far.  And we come here all the time.  It’s just…it’s home.” Many people share her sentiment, waiting until movies end up on the screen at Studio 35 to see them.

It’s easy to understand the lure of Studio 35.  Sure, you can drink a pint of Bell’s Two Hearted while watching an Oscar hopeful on the screen.  You can order a pepperoni pizza while enjoying an Italian zombie flick from the seventies.  You can even go for the high score on Arcade games between showings, should you desire.  But it’s more than just pizza and beer, it’s a community spirit.

“It may not be better projection, or better sound, but the sense of community spirit you get when you walk in the door is wonderful,” says Frank Gabrenya, local film critic. “And to have one of these theaters still existing is kind of miraculous in this day and age.”

Whether it’s a first date, a night out with friends, or a nice escape on a cold night Studio 35 provides the warm and friendly atmosphere that you would want in a movie theater.  One couple had their first date at Studio 35.  “It provided the venue for us to fall in love.” It should be no surprise that it ended up being the venue for their wedding.

There are a lot of great reasons to go see movies.  They entertain us, they enlighten us; they give us another world to cozy up to.  When you can find that world in the movie theater equivalent of “Cheers”, it only make the experience more enjoyable.  Current owner Eric Brembeck loves his job.

“Being an owner, we’re a part of the community now, and able to do things we’ve always wanted to do, AND own a business…that’s hard to do!  It’s not always about making money, it’s about creating experiences for people.”

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  • Martha Kuhn

    Studio 35 introduced me to the Marx Brothers back in the 70s when they had a Marx Bros film fest. Thank you, Studio 35!

  • Fallsguy

    For a while “The Stud” specialized in cult flicks. Saw “Harold and Maude” and “Liquid Sky” — might have been a double feature, even.
    Glad to see it not just surviving, but thriving.
    Makes a ‘Villebilly proud

  • Megamunch Jr.

    RIP Drexel North – glad Studio 35 is hanging on!