by Nicholas Frank
August 6, 2021
AAngela and Rick Martinez, owners of Slab Cinema, are opening a new indoor movie space at Blue Star. They continue to provide outdoor screenings at various locations with their inflatable movie screens.
After nearly 20 years outdoors, Slab Cinema is coming in from the rain. Given an unexpected opportunity, the popular mobile movie venue will open a new brick-and-mortar space in the Blue Star Arts Complex called the Slab Cinema Arthouse, with events beginning next week.
After a gala celebration for San Antonio bon vivant Mike Casey’s 80th birthday held at The Espee in June, co-organizer Angela Martinez moved art made for the event to an unoccupied space in the Blue Star complex for an informal show.
The 1,700-square-foot space had once been the RC Gallery, run by Martinez’s friend Rhonda Kuhlman, who died in 2009. Those old memories made the space feel welcoming, and that it was available for rent sparked the momentum Martinez and husband Rick Martinez, Slab Cinema co-proprietors, needed to realize a long-held idea to open an indoor venue.
Now with city inspections freshly passed, Martinez is moving quickly to program a schedule that will include “art house” films — a loose term that includes indie movies, classic noir and horror genre films, foreign films, cult movies, and films by local filmmakers — along with art exhibitions, live performance, and themed events.