Larry Bauer, president of the Teaneck (http://www.northjersey.com/
A former Teaneck (http://www.northjersey.com/
"First of all, the theater could not re-open in its former condition," said Gralla. "All the equipment had to be converted to digital, which was a major financial undertaking. It also needed a substantial renovation. The existing ownership rose to the occasion and worked together with the new operator to make it happen."
Not expecting to be honored for the project, Gralla also mentioned that it felt great to be recognized for achieving his personal goal of getting the theater re-opened and helping merchants on Cedar Lane rebound.
"Having been raised and having spent my childhood in Teaneck, I made this project a personal challenge," he said. "When the past operator closed his doors unexpectedly and before his lease expired, I saw an opportunity for having the facility upgraded by finding an operator willing to make a long-term commitment. The entire Cedar Lane downtown business district took a financial hit when the theater ceased operations. I met with a large assembly of concerned residents in Teaneck on Dec. 12, 2012, and assured them at the time that I would not quit until I had explored all possibilities. After finding and meeting with operator Matthew Latten, there was no question that he was the perfect fit."
Gralla was able to help deliver a fully-upgraded movie theater for the Teaneck community. The theater was granted permission to open for the Teaneck Film Festival, a non-profit event. Latten held its opening on Friday, Dec. 20.