The Beverley, the last erotic cinema in Paris, in operation for more than three decades, is set to close after losing customers to easily available internet porn. At its peak, it sold 1500–1600 tickets a week.
After more than thirty years, The Beverley Cinema owner, Maurice Laroche, has decided to retire. Working seven days a week, the cinema screened erotic films on a loop throughout the day, with customers typically paying £10 a ticket.
“In the early 1980s, the atmosphere was happy. There were 20 porn cinemas in Paris and 110 across France,” Maurice told Le Parisien, reminiscing over the times before the 1970s, when any French cinema could include pornographic films on its program.
Sadly, ticket sales have drastically decreased since 1975, when the government made these explicit films X-rated, forcing customers to search for them elsewhere. “Today, when we sell 600 tickets a week, we are happy. Twenty years ago, we sold 1500–1600,” Maurice says.
At its peak, The Beverley used to organize couples nights on Thursdays and Saturdays, where partners could watch erotic films together. “Fifteen years ago, a couple came to introduce me to their baby, conceived, according to them, at Beverley!” Maurice says.
Viewer ages range from 18 to 101, claims Maurice, insisting that the venue attracts customers from across the societal spectrum.
The last erotic cinema of London, The Office, was shut down last year only days after it had opened. The cinema had not been granted a license and so was shut down by a furious landlord.
The Berverley Cinema, 14 Rue de la Ville Neuve, Paris, France, +33 1 40 26 00 69