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This theatre is designed without a mezzanine or projection booth. Projectors are mounted to the rear wall in an enclosure in the rear of the auditorium. All cabling is run back to the center of the theatre in the so-called “Digital Command Center”. Pictures here: http://www.pccmovies.com/theater.php?rtsID=48632
This theatre no longer has DBOX. This theatre is a 15 plex, not a 20 plex. It originally was planned as a 20 plex but then scaled back to 15-plex plus IMAX. The IMAX is on hold due to issues with the mall. The IMAX was planned where the original GCC 5 screens are.
When this theatre was the AMC Commerce Park 8 in December 1996, it was robbed and a manager and floor worker were shot. The floor worker later died. AMC closed the facility soon after.
FAST FACT: This theatre closed for seven days in 2004 while crews looked for a snake reported to have been seen in the theatre. http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/Movie-theater-closes-to-hunt-8-foot-snake-1631072.php
This theatre has closed and the Funasia Content is now shown at the Carmike Yorktown 15.
Now 100% Digital Projection
Believe it or not, nope, was never a Cinemark. Back in the 1980s and early 90s, Houston had a company called “Dollar Cinema, Inc” (see their defunct Manta page at http://www.manta.com/c/mml6xs9/dollar-cinema-inc and an old Corporation Wiki at http://www.corporationwiki.com/Texas/Webster/sandra-l-boovy/32132934.aspx) that would buy up and operate older theatres (such as the Briargrove 3, Westminster 8, Parkview Twin, among a few others). They eventually decided they wanted to build their own theatre from the ground up in the fast developing Clear Lake area, and contracted with Cinemark and their developers to build them a theatre. While it looks exactly like a Cinemark from the late 80s (the theatre opened in 1988 — I want to say either November or December) it was owned and operated by Dollar Cinema, Inc, and operated as a sub-run venue from the very first day it opened.
This venue became Dollar Cinema, Inc’s “flagship” theatre, and their company headquarters, and all operations for the company were ran from this theatre.
Even the booth package is Cinemark-y of the time period — CFS lamphouses, Ultra Stereo processors, Peavy Amps, Speco and ORC Super platters (although the MUT for the Super Platter has a factory sticker that clearly says “plater” on it), with Simplex PR1014 projectors. The two large houses had the Super platters which were junked and replaced with matching Speco platters not long after PCC took over operations.
Sadly, it’s rumored that Dollar Cinema, Inc had so many people stealing from the company (and I’m talking at the management level) was the reason the company was put up for sale. Premiere Cinema came in and took over operations of a few of the theatres but ultimately NASA was the only one deemed profitable, and the other locations were closed.
They did some REALLY cheap things here, too. My favorite example is the exhaust for the projectors. Instead of an exhaust fan for each projector, there is one long piece of ductwork running the length of the booth. Each projector connects to this ductwork, and there is one rooftop fan exhausting to the outside right in the middle. And don’t even get me started about those garbage seats we had to replace back in 2004. But then they did some really expensive things, too. Like the sound systems for our two largest houses just seem over-the-top compared to the rest of the theatre. The two big houses were Dolby CP55s (eventually updated with DTS), JBL speakers, and QSC amps, while the smaller houses were analog-only with USL 105/195s and a Peavy package. The CP55’s finally gave up the ghost a few years back and were replaced with JS200s, but those darn USL 105/195s are still operating.. for a few more days, anyway.
There is going to be some remodeling here soon (very soon). So there is hopes it will be a little less 1980s Cinemark-y after they get done.
My favorite Dollar Cinema, Inc moment? In 1994, they were showing The Naked Gun 33 1/3, right about the time OJ Simpson was arrested. The result? The movie hotline announced “The Naked Gun 33 1/3, starring the killer OJ Simpson!”. True story. This incident is so famous, its even cataloged in the book “Cinema Houston” (http://www.cinemahouston.info/) by David Welling.
As a matter of fact, this theatre did have the premiere of Robocop 2. Somewhere I have photos of the event, even a photo with Peter Weller. I’ll see if I can dig them up.
This theatre just re-opened after undergoing a complete renovation and adding a new screen bringing it to a 7-plex. Stadium seating was added, and the complex is now 100% digital with Barco projectors. Lobby was completely redesigned with a new concession stand designed in-house.
AMC did not operate this theatre long as they had the Willowbrook 10 theatre across the street in The Commons shopping center (which was just demolished for an Academy Sporting Goods store). The Willobrook 6 GCC sign, although painted black, still is standing at the far end of the mall on FM1960 near the railroad tracks.
The Greenway was originally operated as an AMC first run, then became an AMC discount house (it was $1.50 when other discount houses at the time were $1.00). When AMC vacated, Landmark theatres came in and took over. It was a 3 screen theatre, no screens were added. AMC actually had Radio Shack amps and Realistic speakers for surround in one auditorium here (no joke). Only one house had stereo, a Dolby CP50 that ran in bypass most of the time. The other two houses were mono. The projectors were cinemeccanica vic 5, and christie autowind platters.
AMC operated Northwest 4 theatre at Northwest Mall from the late 60s to the late 80s. It was a totally seperate theatre from the Northwest Village Cinema 6. The Northwest Village Cinema 6 has been gutted and is now a tool store called Harbor Freight. Although, one of the original movie theatre bathrooms still remains, and looks exactly the way it did when it was a Cinemark.