April 14 update: On the first Saturday since Caine became famous, his arcade was packed. LAist
On Monday, Nirvan Mullick posted his short film about nine-year-old Caine Monroy and the cardboard arcade the boy built during his summer vacation in his dad's auto parts store in Boyle Heights. Mullick discovered the arcade when he walked into the store to buy a door handle for his old Toyota. As of tonight, the video has been watched more than 1.8 million times on Vimeo, another 1.1 million times on YouTube, and who knows how many times other copies have been viewed. The Facebook page has 62,000 likes. Fun Passes sold? Impossible to say. Tears spilled? Same.
More important, $130,000 has been pledged to an online scholarship fund for Caine.
The film screened last fall at UCLA, where Caine and his arcade made an appearance. Caine's Arcade is open for real to visit and play in on weekends. But not this Sunday: he will be celebrating his first communion. The arcade is located inside the Small Parts Auto store at 538 N. Mission Road.
By the way, it's a good two miles from East Los Angeles, so when the LA Times and other geography-challenged news media say that's where it is located, just disregard. It's on the Eastside, but well within the city limits of Los Angeles.