Hometown Automaker Shows Support for Main Street Landmark

The Franklin Theatre today announced that Nissan Americas will sponsor the historic theaters grand re-opening on Friday, June 3, including a 1930s-themed celebration in downtown Franklin.

Nissan, which opened its Franklin-based Americas regional headquarters in 2008, will help underwrite the Franklin Theatres family-friendly events planned for that weekend. As a symbol of the companys support, the Nissan LEAF, the worlds first affordable, mass-market, all-electric vehicle, will be the official vehicle of the theaters re-opening festivities. Two zero-emission Nissan LEAFs will be displayed on Main Street on the evening of June 3.

Middle Tennessee is Nissans home in the Americas and Franklin is the heart of that home, said Jon Brancheau, vice president, Nissan Marketing. The historic Franklin Theater perfectly represents our communitys strengths including a commitment to environmentally conscious preservation and a vision for a vibrant future. Nissan is proud to take part in celebrating its rebirth with our neighbors.

Built in 1937, the Franklin Theatre is re-opening to the public following a four-year multi-million-dollar restoration. The 300-seat movie house will resume its tradition of showing current-run and classic movies and, thanks to a new state-of-the-art sound and lighting system, will expand its repertoire to include concerts and plays.

The theater also includes new energy-saving features, including efficient lighting and water systems, making it one of the most environmentally friendly historic preservation projects in Tennessee.

Like Nissan, the Franklin Theatre is committed to environmental stewardship and sustainability, said Mary Pearce, executive director of the Heritage Foundation of Franklin and Williamson County, which owns the venue. We couldnt think of a better partner than Nissan to help us reintroduce the theater to the public.

Outdoor festivities for the Franklin Theatres grand re-opening scheduled from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. CDT on Friday, June 3 will include free live entertainment as well as extended hours for Franklins downtown merchants and restaurants. A swing band will perform on a stage constructed adjacent to the downtown Square.

Giant outdoor movie screens will create Franklins version of a Hollywood back lot. Side streets where Fourth Avenue crosses Main Street will feature free showings of two classic 30s films the original King Kong (1933), starring Depression-era diva Fay Wray, and everyones favorite musical fantasy The Wizard of Oz (1939) in Technicolor.

A third screen, at Five Points, will feature Swing Time (1936), starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. All three movies are listed on the American Film Institutes (AFI) top 100 movies of all time.

Inside the Franklin Theatre, moviegoers will enjoy a late-night 9:30 p.m. screening of Gone with the Wind, the 1939 classic starring Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh. The four-hour epic won 10 Academy Awards and is the leading 30s film listed on the AFIs top 100. The late-night screening, as well as an encore presentation the next day, sold out within one hour of tickets going on sale last month.

Also on that Friday evening, the Heritage Foundation will host a red-carpet reception for major donors who helped underwrite the Franklin Theatres multi-million-dollar restoration.

About Nissan Americas
In the Americas, Nissan’s operations include automotive styling, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. Nissan is dedicated to improving the environment under the Nissan Green Program and was recognized as an ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year by the U.S Environmental Protection Agency in 2010 and 2011. More information on Nissan in North America, the Nissan LEAF and zero emissions can be found at

About Nissan
Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Japan’s second largest Japanese automotive company by volume, is headquartered in Yokohama, Japan and is an integral pillar of the Renault-Nissan Alliance. Operating with more than 150,000 employees globally, Nissan provided customers with more than 4 million vehicles in 2010. With a strong commitment to developing exciting and innovative products for all, Nissan delivers a comprehensive range of fuel-efficient and low-emissions vehicles under the Nissan and Infiniti brands. A pioneer in zero emission mobility, Nissan made history with the introduction of the Nissan LEAF, the first affordable, mass-market, pure-electric vehicle and winner of numerous international accolades including the prestigious 2011 European Car of the Year award.


Lindsay George
Franklin Theatre
Phone: (615) 400-2335

Stephanie Valdez Streaty
Nissan Americas
Phone: (615) 725-3406

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