Saddle up Nelson, and git to the movies

Saddle up Nelson, and git to the movies

Fistful of Dollars (1964) and Django Unchained (2012) are the film selections for the next movie weekend at the Civic Theatre

Gather yer posse and git ready to ride — it doesn’t get more classic western than this.

A weekend of movie magic is in store at the Nelson Civic Theatre March 21, 22, and 23. This is the second weekend the theatre has shown films after the screen went dark more than two years ago. Now, movie weekends are a monthly event as the Nelson Civic Theatre Society works towards a fully digital three-screen theatre for our community.

Showing Thursday, March 21 at 7:30 p.m. is the 1964 film Fistful of Dollars, starring Clint Eastwood and Sergio Leone, a film that launched the spaghetti western genre.

Friday and Saturday, March 22 and 23 at 7:30 p.m., the western theme continues with Django Unchained, released in December. Director Quentin Tarrantino’s spaghetti western-style film about slavery in the south is styled after the classic A Fistful of Dollars and has earned a fistful of awards at the Oscars, Golden Globes, and the British Academy of Film and Television. The film stars Leonardo DiCaprio and Jamie Foxx.

Programming committee member Jason Asbell is excited about the films. “The way these films relate to one another opens up great opportunity for conversation,” he says. “We’re lucky to be able to have found prints of both — the classic and the current — and be able to show them in the same weekend.”

Also on the program is a Saturday afternoon matinee at 1 p.m., with the movie to be announced. Watch for updates.

While movie weekends aim to entertain, the Nelson Civic Theatre Society is working to renovate and reopen the Civic Theatre as a fully digital multiplex theatre.

Three screens are essential for flexibility to enable the showing of new, classic, and independent films, and streaming satellite TV sports and cultural events. The theatre must go digital, as 35mm print films will no longer be made after 2013, and are already difficult to get.

The full cost of digital projection and Dolby surround sound for the main theatre is $150,000. With more than $80,000 already raised — including $60,000 from an anonymous donor — the Nelson Civic Theatre Society is challenging the community to “crowd fund” the remainder through donations by May 1 so the theatre can show digital films this summer.

To sponsor a seat or donate, go to or call 250-352-5833.