Revisiting The Lost Arcade With Director Kurt Vincent

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We’ve been seeing a lot more video game-oriented documentaries as of late, but one that’s of particular interest is The Lost Arcade. Directed by Kurt Vincent, the film takes a close look at the Chinatown Fair, the last arcade in New York City that gained legendary status with many of its players.

“Opened in the early 1940’s, Chinatown Fair, famous for its dancing and tic tac

toe playing chickens, survived turf wars between rival gangs, increases in rent, and the rise of the home gaming system to become an institution and haven for kids from all five boroughs. A documentary portrait of the Chinatown Fair and its denizens, The Lost Arcade is a eulogy for and a celebration of the arcade gaming community, tenacity, and Dance Dance Revolutionary spirit,” the official movie description reads.

Set for release on June 1st across iTunes, Google Play, Amazon, Steam and Vimeo, the film takes a fascinating look at the now-dormant arcade scene, and how Chinatown Fair makes it thrive.

To get a better idea of what the film is about, we were able to sit down with director Kurt Vincent to discuss its creation, as well as everything Chinatown Fair. It’s definitely a good read for those of you who love your arcade gaming.

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Chinatown Fair’s Greatness…And Chickens

First off, what prompted you to make The Lost Arcade? Did you just feel it was the perfect time to re-explore the lost arcade scene?

No, I never thought about arcades or video games as a subject before. When I heard a rumor that Chinatown Fair was closing I knew there was something valuable being lost because I saw it as the death of a culture.  

Did you have the Chinatown Fair location in New York City in mind the whole time for The Lost Arcade? We did read about how you ran into it accidentally one night.

Yeah, I found Chinatown Fair on a Friday night with Irene Chin, my girlfriend and creative partner. We were in awe of what we witnessed.  We played a few games,…

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