On Los Angeles’s Fairfax Avenue, the Silent Movie Theatre will reportedly soon have a new tenant: Fairfax Theater, LLC. Cinefamily — a pulse point in the Southern California film community that showcased arthouse fare — operated the space for 10 years prior to August 2017, when its activities were suspended after sexual harassment allegations prompted resignations from executive director Hadrian Belove (a co-founder) and board member Shadie Elnashai.
According to Cinefamily Accountability — a website founded by longtime Cinefamily patron Jon Zerolnick — the fledgling Fairfax Theater was established in October by Cinefamily co-founder and former treasurer Dan Harkham, who had the foresight then to know that Cinefamily would permanently close, a fact locals learned the following month. Pre-scandal, Cinefamily’s Board of Directors included well-known industry personalities like Amazon Original Movies head of production Ted Hope, and “The LEGO Movie” co-writer/director Phil Lord. Oscar-winning actress Brie Larson was a member of its advisory board, and also a co-founder of the organization’s Women of Cinefamily subset (all three left on their own accord).
Since 2006, Harkham and his brother, Sammy, have owned the Silent Movie Theatre, an independent venue that seemed passé to some when it debuted in 1942, well into the talkies era. It is unknown whether Harkham will also operate Fairfax Theater without partners, as a successive non-profit. Cinefamily Accountability confirmed that Belove will have “absolutely nothing to do” with this venture, although participating Cinefamily veterans may include former programmer Tom Fitzgerald.
This post has been updated.