Short Update from FOTAA AGM Meeting 21st March 2015

Many thanks to all the FOTAA Members, the interested members of the Public, and the media who attended the FOTAA AGM on Saturday 21st March 2015.


A short update on the results of the AGM and our planned communications over the next few weeks.

  • We will be publishing the Minutes of the FOTAA Annual General Meeting by 31/03/15 to all FOTAA Members

  • We will issuing a meeting summary of the Palace Cinema Presentation together with the Q&As from the meeting concerning the Palace Cinema Plans for 2015 by 31/03/15

  • Link to The Age Newspaper article by National Film Editor Karl Quinn on the 2015 FOTAA AGM Meeting; and the continuing negotiations around the Palace Cinemas proposed lease of the theatre in 2015.


(March 22nd 2015)

 FOTAA President Vanda Hamilton Response to Recent Astor Theatre website post of 15/03/2015

Vanda has written a response to a recent posting on Astor Theatre website labelled “Current Situation:” , and similar comments on the Astor Theatre Facebook page, and other media.

Dear FOTAA Members,

Unfortunately we have been put in a position where we need to refute some assertions made in a post on The Astor’s website. Read the Full Text here…


agm_2-2015 FOTAA AGM Update Friday 13-03-2015

Palace Cinema CFO Presentation of Plans for Astor Theatre in 2015.

All FOTAA Members, and Interested General Public are welcome to attend.

After the closure of formal items on the 2015 AGM Agenda (see notice below), we have secured the Palace Cinema’s Chief Financial Officer Mr. Renato Fonti, who will be presenting their plans for the Astor Theatre 2015.

An opportunity for a Question and Answer session with FOTAA Members, and any non-Members attending, will then follow. 


  • There may be some confusion about who can attend the FOTAA AGM, and the Palace Cinema Presentation .
  • Just to clarify – only paid up FOTAA members can vote, but anyone is welcome to attend, paid up FOTAA member or not.
  • So if you, or anyone you know would like to attend to hear about Palace’s proposals for the future of the cinema, you will be most welcome.

Details are as posted below

(Friday 13th March 2015)


Notice of FOTAA Inc. 2014/15 Annual General Meeting  (AGM)

DATE   Saturday 21/03/15 at 2:30 PM AEDT

VENUE: Betty Day Community Centre, 67 Argyle Street, St Kilda VIC 3182

Melways Map Ref 58 C9


Public Transport Access: Stop No.33 St. Kilda Rd. Tram Routes No.3, 67 or Stop No.27 Chapel St Tram Route No.78, 79

Limited street parking in Argyle Street. Extended time parking in Bath Street,behind the Centre (accessed from Inkerman Street)


DIRECTIONS If you enter from Argyle St, you will need to go pass the main building on your right (the Kindergarten will be on your left). The building behind Kindergarten is the multipurpose room, which is location of the AGM Meeting

 All current FOTAA Members are cordially invited to attend the FOTAA AGM on Saturday 21st March 2015 at 2:30pm AEDT.

Copies of the AGM Agenda, Nomination forms etc, have been emailed out or despatched by post on Friday 6th March 2015 to all current financial FOTAA Members. (Please check your email spam folder if your email has not yet arrived.)


FOTAA 2015 AGM Download Links

Please Click the link below to download PDF of the FOTAA Inc. 2015 AGM Notice containing Meeting Agenda & Nomination  Form:

2015 FOTAA Inc AGENDA NOTICE AGM & Nom Form .v1.2

Download the Minutes of Previous 2013 AGM Meeting are available here:

(Friday 6th March 2015)

 Postponement of FOTAA AGM until 2015

The Registrar of Incorporated Associations has approved our application for a delay in holding our Annual General Meeting, and as such FOTAA have postponed our AGM until March 2015.

The reason for this postponement  is simply that we wanted to focus our FOTAA Committee’s energy, and time, on the current discussions on the lead-up to the Palace Cinemas offer to lease the Astor in 2015. (See Update Below dated 14-12-14).

We will be in touch again with all our FOTAA financial Members by early March 2015 at the latest, to advise of the revised AGM date.

Any AGM notifications will be independent of any other public communications FOTAA Inc. have on the future of the Astor in 2015


Update 14-December 2014 FOTAA Statement Re Palace Cinemas & The Astor Theatre

The Friends of The Astor Association Inc. (FOTAA) are delighted that Palace Cinemas have made a conditional offer to the landlord to lease the Astor Theatre, and to George Florence to retain his involvement in the programming and operation of the cinema. Under Palace Cinemas’ care it will remain a single screen cinema, and the interior will remain unchanged, apart from necessary repairs. Palace and George are also endeavouring to ensure that the film projectors remain in place, ensuring that The Astor will be able to screen film when it is available.

To preserve the Astor experience, under this proposed partnership, George Florence and his wonderful team will still be there when Palace Cinemas become the operators of The Astor. George‘s vision, hard work, knowledge and inspiration have given Melbourne and the world The Astor. George also saved many film prints that would have otherwise become hard rubbish, and it is thanks to him that The Astor has been able to include so many 70mm and 35mm films in its program.  In this new arrangement, George Florence would continue the wonderful and inspiring programming for which The Astor is famous, supported by the stable structure and business know-how which has made the Palace Cinema group such an integral and important part of Melbourne’s film culture.

Single screen cinemas around the world are rapidly disappearing. FOTAA fought to keep The Astor as a single screen cinema not just because we love it dearly, but also because we believe that in years to come it will prove to be a major drawcard for film lovers throughout the world, and a vital resource for film education. Already Australian and international tourists to Melbourne visit The Astor while they are here. In the future, The Astor will be a major drawcard for visitors to Melbourne, and cinephiles worldwide have expressed how lucky Melbourne is to have The Astor. There is no doubt that the retention of The Astor as a single screen cinema in its original home will be the envy of film lovers everywhere.

FOTAA congratulate all involved in this venture and thank both Ralamar Nominees and George Florence for being open to the proposal from Palace Cinemas, and working with them to try and make this happen. We would also like to thank Benjamin Zeccola, CEO of Palace Cinemas, for stepping up, and working hard with all parties on the proposal.

Most of all we thank you, supporters and lovers of The Astor, whose passion and enthusiasm keep us going during difficult times. We hope that you continue to flock to The Astor, and that your children and their children and all the children in years to come will have the opportunity to experience the beauty and the wonder of The Astor.

FOTAA will continue as an independent organisation, which will always advocate the retention of The Astor as a single screen cinema, and the importance of retaining film in the programming.

Best Regards,

Vanda Hamilton, President of FOTAA Inc.

(Sunday December 14th 2014)

For all media inquiries and to arrange interviews with Vanda Hamilton, President of the Friends of the Astor Association, please contact Vanda via email our website email:

Friends Of The Astor Association (FOTAA) Incorporated, a non-profit organisation managed entirely by unpaid volunteers.

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