The theater is back with a red carpet premiere.
- Well, the ISIS theater in the Fort Worth stockyards has been dark for decades, but the owner has been able to turn the lights back on with a lot of hard work. Jason Allen live for us in the stockyards now to show us this transformation.
- Yeah, Ken. This is a red carpet premiere for the ISIS theater. Now, if you look down here, it looks like one of those Hollywood style movie premieres that you would see the movie premiering tonight. 12 Mighty Orphans filmed here in the Fort Worth area.
The man who bought this theater more than three years ago when it looked like it should just be torn down, he told me today this is what he envisioned all along. Inside the downtown cowtown at the ISIS theater, staff was rapidly setting the stage, preparing the ball, testing the production equipment in preparation for the building's first film in at least 30 plus years. It looks ready for its premiere. And if you ask the theater owner, he always knew it would.
- I see the grandeur that this space once had. I see the grandeur that this space once again will have.
- That was Jeffrey Smith when we walked through the theater with him in 2017. Back then, it had an open roof, crumbling walls, piles of debris.
- It was as hard as I thought it was going to be. I think the biggest challenge for me that was the most surprising was the amount of time.
- Time, which was lengthened by the pandemic. It slowed deliveries on materials and the investment was more than he originally expected. But he was committed to finish what he started.
- This is a long term deal for us. So we wanted to make sure we got it done, we want to make sure we got it done right. And we want to make sure that we're here for a long time. So it's worth it. Every bit of it
- Rather than bringing something new to the stockyards, he looks at the theater as something that just needed a bit of polish Well, maybe a lot of polish to add to what's already here.
- Every day I come in here, it's always another excitement, another invigoration of what we've been able to accomplish and where we're headed with it, so yeah. For it to come to fruition at this point, I'm extremely excited, so exhausted. But I'm excited.
- After the premiere of the film tonight, they're going to be films that continue showing during the day here at the theater. In fact, Smith told me that this film 12 Mighty Orphans is probably going to be shown here for the next two weeks after its premiere tonight.
And then, Ken, they're starting to book up music and theater acts all the way right now on weekends to the end of the year.
- It's going to be the new hot spot, the new popular place to be out there in the stockyard. Jason Allen is live for us. Thank you very much.