By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
Re Ed Halter's article about the dispute at IFC Center and how management will not talk to the union [July 27-August 2]: I am a projectionist at IFC Center. Although my political views are far to the left, I feel that in this case people are getting upset about something that's just not worth it. It's not like IFC went and hired random people off the street and paid them pennies on the dollar. I am an experienced projectionist. I learned to project at the film archives at North Carolina School of the Arts. At the archives we handled anywhere from five to 25 rare and fragile prints every week. Projection and handling standards there are higher than almost anywhere else in the world. I also project regularly at a private New York City screening room, which has high standards, and I am a licensed projectionist in New York State, contrary to the flyers the union people are handing out. I've had as much or more experience than the average union projectionist.
As far as the story of the botched showing of Dont Look Backgoes, I hadn't heard of it prior to reading this article. Assuming it is true, it is not indicative of lax standards. Every single union projectionist has had a terrible show at some pointlikely more than one. Shit sometimes goes wrong. Overall, IFC Center standards are much higher than most places in New York City, or any place, for that matter. We actually can do reel-to-reel shows for archival prints, which is something that lots of union art house theaters can't say.
Also, we always send prints back out in the same or better shape than we got them in. The only thing we do to prints is, with the permission of the distributor, cut off the heads and tails for automation. I can't tell you how many prints we get that are in shitty shape or show up without reels or cores or are sticky or something absurd like that. We send them back out clean and correct.
I am paid well and treated with respect by IFC management. If IFC did talk to the union, there would be maybe one union guy actually hired to platter the prints and "run things." I would still get paid the same amount, and the projection standards would still be high. So, basically, I understand the anti-corporate sentiment people are expressing here, but I think that there are other corporate doings in the world that are far more deserving of their ire.
Cover him angry
I hate your cover art for "Tossing Out Tenants" [July 20-26]. It shows people falling from a building in poses reminiscent of the 9-11 victims who were forced to jump to their deaths. I simply expect better from the Voice than this poor choice of visual metaphor. As awful as it is, eviction does not equal death, not even in New York City.