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Meet the cult film enthusiasts inspiring the city’s next generation of indie-filmmakers

CULTPLEX is a independent cinema situated on Red Bank, tucked away in the upstairs of GRUB.

Hey film buffs!

Have you ever heard of CULTPLEX?

If not, you’re in for a treat.

This hidden gem in Manchester has been redefining the cinema experience since 2019.

Think cult classics, geeky vibes, and a community that’s all about enjoying films together.

CULTPLEX goes beyond movies, teaming up with local comedy clubs, hosting gaming leagues, and even featuring Q&A sessions with directors and writers, too.

Fancy it? Well you can join the club, quite literally as they have a membership scheme you can join by clicking here

Join the club, quite literally, as they’re launching a membership scheme and eyeing expansion in 2023

For film aficionados, this could be one of the best-kept secrets in the city.

Unveiling the Cult Cinema Experience in Manchester

For film enthusiasts seeking a unique cinematic experience in Manchester, CULTPLEX, formerly known as Chapeltown Picture House, has been quietly revolutionising the scene since 2019.

This hidden gem is dedicated to bringing cult classics to the big screen, creating a haven for all things nerdy, cult, or geeky.

Owner’s Vision: Jason Bailey on Cult Cinema

In an exclusive interview, Jason Bailey, the visionary behind CULTPLEX, shared the essence of their mission.

“We’re all about anything nerdy, cult, or geeky,” he explained.

The cinema started by showcasing films rarely seen on the big screen, offering a chance for audiences to enjoy these classics collectively.

Bailey emphasised the joy of shared experiences, contrasting it with the solitary nature of private cinema viewings.

(L-R) Greg Walker (Cinema manager) Matthew Chambers (Cinema producer) Jason Bailey (Owner)

Jason continued: “I saw a tweet the other day and it was a person boasting that they had the cinema entirely to themselves.

“I honestly just thought that was the saddest thing I’ve read.

“There’s so much joy to be had from being in an audience of fellow cinema lovers having a great time watching a film they love. We’re all about the collective experience here, and we’ve built a great community who seem to be enjoying it too.”

Not Just Films

CULTPLEX extends its reach beyond film, establishing partnerships with local entities such as the comedy club ‘A Lovely Time’ (check them out here) and hosting events like the Manchester Amateur Gaming League.

The venue has also welcomed renowned directors for Q&A sessions, creating a dynamic space for entertainment beyond traditional film screenings.

They have struck up a great partnership with the local comedy club ‘A Lovely Time’.

Local comedians looking for a place to test their material have been using CULTPLEX to see how live audiences react to their new routines.

Not only this, they had legendary Brass Eye director Michael Cumming do a Q&A and watch-a-long of Brass Eye, and late last year had an evening with Garth Marenghi, (played by Matthew Holness) star of the cult TV series who was promoting his hilarious new book, Terrortome.

They recently hosted the Premiere of Mancunian Man – The Legendary Life of Cliff Twemelow, too.

Helping Indie Film Makers Flourish

Greg Walker, Cinema Manager said he ultimately wanted to help aspiring filmmakers and visual artists get their work out there, by providing a space that ‘takes risks’ and provides an accessible place for art to flourish.

“If people want to debut their films, they can do it here. We’re one of the only places in town that is not exorbitantly expensive, and we can house a fair amount of people too.

Matthew added: “We’re a comfortable, safe space where people can come and feel safe and have a great time. We’ve got a great selection of beer, soft drinks and food too.

“What’s important for us is allowing grassroots opportunities for aspiring filmmakers. It’s so hard in Manchester to find a space where you can go and put on your film without bankrupting yourself.

“We’ll help them with marketing and get behind them too with advice and help. People with no experience who have a voice and viewpoint, we’ll help you to get your platform.”

The Journey So Far

Originally opening as Chapeltown Picture House in 2019, CULTPLEX faced challenges when their initial site was condemned.

Undeterred, they found a new home upstairs at GRUB, overcoming obstacles to become a thriving cinematic hub.

In 2023, fueled by the overwhelming response to their events, CULTPLEX is eyeing expansion into new sites, events, and cities.

The introduction of a membership scheme and increased screening options reflects their dedication to providing a unique cinematic experience for all.

Looking to the Future

CULTPLEX is also launching a membership scheme and is looking to double its output into weekday screenings alongside weekend double and triple bills.

Jason continued: “We’re doing things a bit differently here. The atmosphere is great and I think the word is getting out a bit.

“From working through Covid, where it was nearly impossible to get so many people in a room together, we’ve had 8 or 9 events last year which have been magic.

“For instance, we did the whole of the Lord of the Rings Marathon – a huge investment in time – and it was rammed. We also did a Twilight screening, and we couldn’t believe how diverse the crowd was. Everyone is welcome here.

“There’s a great feel in the community we’ve built here. The vibes are top. Why not have a look at what we’re screening and come on down?”

Check out CULTPLEX’s listings here and stay connected on Twitter @cpxmcr. Immerse yourself in the collective joy of cult cinema, where everyone is welcome.

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