The Seattle Cinerama is back and it’s bringing the movie experience with it.
Regularly voted one of “Seattle’s best places to watch a movie,” the theater’s renovation jumps off the wall on the walk up to the box office. The Cinerama now boasts a new multicolor mural painted on the exterior façade at the corner of 4th and Lenora that pays homage to film genres and scenes synonymous with the theater such as science fiction, westerns, action and adventure films.
But it’s the new technology that will impress moviegoers the most.
Cinerama’s upgrades include one of the world’s first commercial Christie 6P laser projector specifically designed for 3-D movies. It has two heads delivering both left and right 3-D images simultaneously to the viewer, reducing eye strain and subtle jitters that have plagued cinephiles looking for a fully immersive 3-D experience.
The theater’s sound system was also overhauled. The Cinerama now has 110 speakers, up from 65 previously, all provided by Meyer Sound and Dolby Atmos. Each speaker is individually powered and amplified to make the movie experience even more realistic; the viewer can actually “feel” the helicopter flying in and around the theater as it flies in and out of the shot on the screen.
An overhauled of the theater layout and seats also upgrades the experience for customers. The theater reduced its seating from 798 chairs to 570 chairs to provide more leg room and wider chairs. The auditorium’s new layout offers more than two feet of additional legroom. Additionally, Cinerama’s new website will allow movie buffs the ability to reserve their favorite seats in the theater.
Much has changed in Cinerama’s fourth and most substantial renovation since Paul Allen purchased the theater in 1998, but the chocolate popcorn that has been a Cinerama staple is still available, its aroma making it impossible not to purchase a bag (or two). A new addition to the dining experience is local beer, wine and hard cider on tap to accompany local favorites like pretzels from Tom Douglas’ Brave Horse Tavern and sweets from Theo Chocolate, Cupcake Royale and Full Tilt Ice Cream.
For Allen, a refurbished Cinerama is more about delivering a one-of-a-kind movie experience and maintaining a city icon than ticket sales or bottom lines. .
“Cinerama has been a cornerstone of Seattle’s arts and culture history for 50 years and I’m proud to continue its legacy,” said Paul G. Allen, owner of Cinerama. “The enhanced Cinerama utilizes the most advanced technology, while maintaining the nostalgia many of us share for this theater, creating an unparalleled cinema experience for the community.”
Cinerama opens up with on November 20th with a showing of “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1.”