The Ricardo Montalban Foundation Theater, located in busy downtown Hollywood, relies on Canon IP security cameras to provide peace of mind both during events and after the lights go dim.

The 1,000-seat Ricardo Montalban Foundation Theatre, located in the heart of Hollywood, boasts an iconic exterior and hosts a variety of diverse cultural events. And while the its namesake may be best known for his role as Mr. Rourke on TV’s “Fantasy Island,” it’s safe to say that security is no fantasy at the facility.

The venue’s security solution includes several Canon IP cameras, which are mounted on exterior and interior locations to monitor people and events in and around the theater – whether it’s open or closed.

“Security is a concern in any busy urban area, and when you’re moving large groups of people in and out, it’s paramount for maintaining the confidence of both patrons and staff,” says Gil Smith, chairman of the Montalban Foundation Theater. “We have an iconic 1926 Broadway-style theater building, and graffiti and vandalism are continuing challenges. We want to maintain a positive environment here, and video surveillance provides documentation after the fact. If there’s an indication of some incident, you can go back and review the footage. This video information provides for better communication with both the community and the police.”

Los Angeles area security company Post Alarm Systems installed the Canon IP megapixel cameras, which include vandal-resistant models for the building’s exterior and both dome and box-style cameras for the interior. The theater plans to have a Canon PTZ camera installed outside the building to provide wide-angle street views.

The Canon cameras installed at the Montalban Theatre allow remote adjustment, which allows integrators and installers to change the viewpoint, zoom and focus after installation from any Internet-connected PC without removing the dome cover. This feature alone saved Post Alarm Systems several hours of labor per camera, says Rich Buchanan, an account executive for the company.

“I can go down in front of a Web page and make some tweaks in 5 seconds that would have taken me at least an hour to do if I was already on-site. That’s a huge savings that adds up over and over again. The remote adjustment function is definitely going to equate to happier customers, and having a happy customer is definitely going to equate to more referrals and recommendations of Canon products,” he says.

Smith says Canon’s reputation for high-quality consumer and professional products played a major role in the decision to use its IP surveillance cameras. The cameras’ Smart Shade Control feature, which automatically adjusts the contrast between bright and dark areas of an image, made them particularly well-suited for this project.

“The theater presents a lot of challenges for maintaining good picture levels,” Smith says. “Conditions range from the darkest dark on our theater stage to the hottest hot in bright outdoor sunlight. Our entry court has deep, dark corners that turn into bright sunlit areas as the day progresses. The dynamic range I’m seeing from these Canon IP cameras, from highlights to shadows, is amazing.”

Smith says the Montalban Theatre has been very happy with the system’s performance and the peace of mind it provides.

“The system gives us the confidence that we can close the doors, walk away and know that at any moment we can access our servers and the images that we are capturing 24/7,” he says.