“We will turn on the Vogue’s marquee lights, bring in some jobs, pump money into the economy and do it with a nonprofit staffed mostly by volunteers. The people of Manistee are about to see what a popular, thriving movie palace can do for their downtown.”
With these words, Academy Award winning filmmaker and author Michael Moore helped kick off a project to completely rehabilitate Manistee’s historic Vogue Theatre and revitalize Manistee in the process.
The Vogue Theatre Project is a complete rehabilitation of the theatre – inside and out – including mechanical and plumbing systems, roofing and a totally renovated interior with two screens. The large “grand theatre” will seat 187, while the smaller screen will seat 45. The completely rebuilt lobby and lounge area and concession stand will emphasize operational efficiency and provide a top-notch experience for film-goers. State-of-the-art digital projection equipment and facilities are being outfitted by industry leader Boston Light & Sound.
The Vogue has positive implications far beyond the restoration of a historic movie house, including:
- A catalyst for economic prosperity
- A vibrant and diverse downtown district
- A renewed sense of pride for residents, merchants and visitors
- More retailers, restaurants, art galleries and destinations for music, art, recreation and family entertainment
- Revitalization of Manistee County’s only cinema, preventing Manisteeans from having to drive 30 miles to the nearest multiplex
- Programming – assisted by Michael Moore – of the best movies; independent, documentary and otherwise, creating a cinema destination unlike any other in the area.
The revitalization of the Vogue is a grassroots effort under the direction of the Historic Vogue Theatre of Manistee (HVTM), a non-profit organization formed to spearhead the project. To date, well over 500 people from all walks of life have volunteered their time and talents to make this project a reality.