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by Jay A. Fernandez
October 8, 2012 5:40 PM
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DCTV to Build Documentary-Only Movie Theater in Lower Manhattan

The DCTV firehouse in Manhattan's Chinatown.

Documentary film lovers rejoice: Downtown Community Television Center has plans to build a 73-seat docs-only movie theater inside the organization’s headquarters at Lafayette and White Street in Lower Manhattan. Supported by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, construction is scheduled to begin in March and last a year before the theater will open to the public.

The new theater will have 4K digital cinema technology and screen first-run films throughout the year, plus host special events with filmmakers.

"This is an important moment for both the growth of our organization and the city itself,” said DCTV co-founder Jon Alpert. “New York City is a major hub of documentary cinema — there are great documentaries being made here and New Yorkers love documentaries. There should be a dedicated place in the city that celebrates them."

On Thursday, Oct. 11, DCTV, which has produced many award-winning documentaries over the years, celebrates its 40th anniversary with a party at the Lafayette firehouse space.

READ MORE: James Gandolfini, Sheila Nevins, Cora Weiss to Celebrate Downtown Community Television Center's 40th Anniversary

“Over the last 40 years DCTV has fostered an extraordinary community of documentary filmmakers in New York City,” said cultural affairs commissioner Kate D. Levin. “From producing award-winning feature films to providing students and professionals alike with the training and equipment they need to develop compelling work, DCTV cultivates the very best storytelling from across the five boroughs and beyond. We are thrilled to join the public-private partnership that will create a state of the art theater in this landmark facility and allow the organization to welcome even more artists and audiences for generations to come.”

Check out this video, which gives a sense of what DCTV has accomplished over the last four decades:

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