Welcome to New Screen Slate. ?
What you see is the result of of many people’s work across varying timelines. It’s been developed tirelessly over the past year by Danny Bowman, Jeremy Fisher, and Randall Reed, three extraordinarily talented individuals who brought high pedigree and professionalism to the project while recognizing it as a unique, and perhaps idiosyncratic, labor-of-love for its authors. This work was supported by the generous contributions of our Kickstarter backers and other year-round donors, who placed their confidence in our ability to deliver while waiting patiently. And throughout this process, Screen Slate’s circle of volunteer contributors and advisors have met, plotted, written, edited, provided feedback, and put forth essential efforts to keep the project running and steer things true. For me, this is a major turning point in a rich, five-and-a-half journey from initial concept to a place where I finally feel the original idea -- of having a resource that tells you what movies are showing at all the good places, and works like a real website -- has been realized. Now that New Screen Slate is here and everything is different, I feel zero nostalgia or sentiment for Old Screen Slate. I can admit at last: the last 1,975 days have been a pretty major pain in the ?.
So, what’s new, and what’s coming next?
Emoji support is one thing, apparently. However, Screen Slate was never intended to be thought of as a “daily email” with some website behind it, and I think you’ll see why. Now it works like you want it to: like a real website, it’s a live application dynamically populated by thoughtfully structured data. You can now do simple things one would expect to do on a movie listing website that you could not do before. When you click on a venue, you can view that venue’s listings. When you click on a series, you can see that series’s listings. Amazing. Near the top of the site, you can see a handsome date picker on which you can free-wheelingly click through the upcoming week’s listings and featured screenings. Like a cat with a ball of yarn, I have personally entertained myself for minutes on end simply clicking on this. What’s more: if you select the calendar icon to the right, you can view things coming up even further in advance! Thanks to improvements on the back end (i.e., it is no longer literally a blank blog post where we just manually type or copy-and-paste in listings, styling and linking everything by hand) we can work much more easily and way further in advance to do our best to keep pace with the speed at which venues update their own websites. And if you’re not looking at it on a phone, grab one: although New Screen Slate renders beautifully on a desktop, we designed it with mobile in mind.
A normal person would take advantage of this milestone, say, take a vacation. However, I’m pleased to now make the exciting announcement that we’re launching a new membership program. If you want to support what we do, you can make a monthly pledge equivalent to buying us a coffee, a beer, or a matinee movie ticket. In return, you’ll be the first to receive our new members-only weekly email digest when it launches in early August and get free access to special screenings programmed by Screen Slate with rare, overlooked titles or special guests. This money can cover our costs (including server rental, email list fees, image hosting, and maintenance), fund major site improvements, and, we hope, eventually provide honorariums for our all-volunteer staff.
Please also keep in mind: despite the new paint job, Screen Slate is DIY as ever. It’s ad-free, we’re all volunteers doing this on the side of (or illicitly during) real-world jobs, and the money raised offsets my own out-of-pocket expenses. (“Publisher,” in DIY parlance, means person racking up credit card debt.) We have an incredible new platform, and what we’re able to do with it is up to you. So whether you’re a longtime daily user or someone who’s just discovering Screen Slate, please become a member and support what we do.
Final word of housekeeping: we’re continuing to improve the site over the summer. This includes simple things like slowly porting over our old write-ups and articles (interviews, etc.), making cosmetic enhancements, improving user experience, adding venue filters, implementing search. We hope you’ll bear with us and excuse any bugs you may encounter. In the meantime, enjoy, and look forward to seeing you at the ?.