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Latvia’s capital Riga has always been a city with a saturated film life – the first moving pictures in Riga Solomonskis’ circus were demonstrated even earlier than in Berlin or New York. Now both the world-class movie houses and international film festivals are available in Latvia for a qualitative entertainment.
The first public movie house "The Royal Vio" was built in Riga in 1901 (888 seats in the hall and 312 in the balcony). Till the early 20ies of the 20th century, films had been shown in at least twenty places in Riga. On December 30, 1923 the shiny film palace – cinema "Splendid Palace" (currently cinema "Riga") was pompously opened.
Today in Latvia there are available updated movie houses with the world level sound systems - "Kino Citadele", "Cinamon", as well as there is an opportunity to watch qualitative author movies and art house films (cinema gallery "K.
Suns", cinema "Riga") and enjoy the colouring of mini cinemas in Latvian towns.
Two international film festivals - "Baltic Pearl" and "Arsenals" -, the film programme "Berlinale", the Nordic Film Days, the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender cinema days, as well as the world-famous cinema classic retrospections take place in Latvia.
In the very heart of Riga, Peitavas Street 10/12 (entrance from Maza Peitavas Street) there is the Riga Film Museum, where a cinemateque with Latvian and foreign films is available. Previously announcing oneself, it is possible to watch them both individually (with headphones) and in groups (in the hall). Inhabitants of Riga are proud that the world-famous film director Sergei Eisenstein (Sergejs Eizenšteins, 1898-1948) who was born and studied in the capital of Latvia. Eisenstein was the author of the legendary films "Battleship Potemkin" (1925), "Alexander Nevsky" (1938) and "Ivan the Terrible" (1945). An exposition devoted to the director is opened in the Film Museum, too.
In its turn, if you want to see a film production environment outdoors, a nice adventure will be a journey to the cinema city “Cinevilla” (located 15 kilometres from Tukums), the so-called Latvian counterpart of the Indian film industry citadel Bollywood.