Author: Sam Rogers (NEWS CENTER Maine)
Published: 7:16 PM EDT July 28, 2021
Updated: 7:16 PM EDT July 28, 2021
WESTBROOK, Maine — The popcorn will soon be popped and the big screen will make its respected return at two Maine movie theaters. Apple Cinemas, a Massachusetts-based company, announced it will reopen the Cinemagic theaters in Westbrook and Saco.
The Westbrook and Saco Cinemagic theaters have been closed since February. The Massachusetts-based company plans to reopen the theaters this fall.
“It’s great news for the people of Westbrook and we’re excited to have Apple Cinemas break into Maine from Boston,” Daniel Stevenson, the Economic and Development Director city of Westbrook, said Wednesday.
Stevenson grew up in the city he now works for and said during his childhood, there were no big theaters around. He added having the theater reopened in Westbrook will give folks another source of entertainment, especially in the winter.
“I think people will be waiting in long lines to go,” he added. “People are ready, want to go out, and want to be back in movie theaters.”
Scott Warren has experienced first-hand how badly some folks want to get back into the theater to watch a movie on the big screen. The Bangor Mall Cinemas General Manager said when the theater reopened in April, the customers were thanking the employees for plating movies.
“It’s great to hear people tell us ‘we’re so glad you’re open, we’re so happy to be back at the movies, we haven’t been here in over a year,’” Warren said.
As more movie studios transition into releasing films on streaming platforms, Warren said the theater industry needs to continue to adapt. One way, he said, is by expanding the food concessions to more than just popcorn, pretzels, and hot dogs.
The big drive for folks going to the movies is to get the authentic experience of being inside a theater. Warren said some movies being released by Hollywood, especially the action movies, should be watched on the big screen with surround sound. “It’s not going to be the same in my view if it’s not viewed in a movie theater,” he said.
Both he and Stevenson add there is nothing better than watching a great movie in a theater with other cinema fans. “Especially with certain movies it needs to be on a big screen with movie theater sound,” Warren said.
“You get to be with other people, you get to laugh and cry with people,” Stevenson added. The one challenge for Warren and other movie theaters in the country is finding enough workers.
Apple Cinemas is trying to get ahead of that issue as the company has posted hiring signs at its future locations in Westbrook and Saco. The two theaters are expected to open sometime this fall.
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