Case Studies

The Rex Cinema


The Rex cinema in Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, is a stunning ‘boutique’ cinema which is probably one of the best independent cinemas in the country. Originally built in the 1920s, it was left to decay for fifteen years after it ended its life as a bingo hall in the 1980s.

Entrepreneur James Hannaway decided to buy it and transform it back into as close to its original art nouveau beauty as possible. He has created a movie heaven, screening the top blockbusters with a repertory programme that includes cinema classics, independent art films and the top foreign movies.

As soon as the tickets go on sale at the end of the month for the next month’s schedule, the tickets are usually a complete sell out. It was earlier this year when James rang PardellPR to say that the box office opened on the previous Saturday and by the following Tuesday every night of the week for the whole of the next month had sold out. He was proud of this and wanted to get his beautiful cinema some national attention.

What can you do, he asked me, knowing I was passionate about the Rex.

I did good. I rang my entertainment media contacts and struck gold with the Sunday Times Culture magazine. Miraculously I encouraged one of their top journalists, Bryan Appleyard, to cross the M25 and come to Berkhamsted where he watched an afternoon matinee performance of Scorcese’s childrens’ film Hugo after he interviewed James.

The resulting piece was sensational, click here to read it….. James also thanked me in the next Rex programme, see below. Click to enlarge the article