August 18, 2002

To Whom It May Concern:

I am honored to endorse Jeffrey Mills' project to produce a documentary
film on the legendary Interstate Theatre chain of Texas.

As a native Houstonian growing up in the 1950s and l960s, Interstate Theatres were very much a part of my life. In those days, the theatres themselves were as much a part of the show as the movie on the screen, and I cherish the memories of the grand old Houston Theatres and the managers who took pride in them, display a flair of showmanship that has all but vanished, from today's movie exhibition.

A dream came true for me when I began working at Austin's historic Paramount Theatre, once a flagship Interstate house, in 1985, after the theatre had been restored to its former physical glory and re-christened as a primary performing arts venue. In everything that we do here at the Paramount - plays, concerts, and, yes, still some film - my staff and I do our best to demonstrate love and care for this beautiful theatre and offer the same sense of showmanship as my predecessors would have.

With the disappearance of far too many old theatres and what they meant to their communities - a social magnet, a cultural heartbeat for the city - the opportunity to re-visit this lost majesty through Mr. Mills' project is something we should support and rejoice in.

Yours truly,




Paul Beutel
Director of Programming
Paramount Theatre
Austin Theatre Alliance



the actual letter


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