Akers Mill Cinema

2967 Cobb Parkway NW,
Atlanta, GA 30339

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Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on July 18, 2010 at 8:50 pm

96 Rock PURE ROCKn'ROLL MIDNIGHT MOVIES at Akers Mill were on Oct 15 1988, “ROCKY HORROR”, “BEETLEJUICE” {weak midnight movie selecion,starting to lose managers like me that knew midnight movie crowds} also “M-3D:THE MOVIE”.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on June 15, 2010 at 4:37 pm

Mr.Projector,Knows Robin.Tlsloews.

TLSLOEWS on June 14, 2010 at 8:40 pm

Thanks Mr.Projector.

jumboloan on January 5, 2010 at 1:59 pm

I worked as a doorman and perpetual popcorn popper for this theater which would be sold to customers days later. I moved on to Plitt Promenade, a much better management experience. The movie halls were long and narrow, very poor experience. This theater did not have much to offer except very attractive carpeting and their opening jingle (do dat do, do dat do, do dat do…) . I do remember watching Flashdance, AC/DC Back in Black, and The World According to Garp endlessly during that summer.

I wish only the best for foxy Kim and Mr. Bailey!

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on December 16, 2009 at 8:55 pm

Dave, it’s a pity you didnot get hired.I hope you got on with another theatre chain.I had the best years of my life at the theatres.I read about people on CT with such a love for the business,but alot of them never working at a Theatre.

DaveNewton on December 9, 2009 at 3:37 pm

The longest I ever waited in line to see a movie was at this theater, over 6 hours for the first STAR TREK movie. My friends and I kept taking turns going back to the car and ‘partying’ while other friends held our place in line, so we could barely stay awake when we finally were watching the movie. I applied for a job at this theater in 1979 or ‘80, but didn’t get it. Oh well!

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on October 18, 2009 at 12:50 pm

When I worked at GCC’s GEORGIA SQUARE MALL CINEMAS,I had to run up to AKERS MILL. I think THE TWILIGHT ZONE was Playing and i want to say OCTOPUSSY was also there. I did go over to the AMC,because I had never been to an AMC since ATHENS and AUGUSTA never had them. I was really impressed and could not believe AKERS MILL was still open.Wasn’t it in almost walking distance of AKERS MILL?

JackCoursey on November 12, 2008 at 4:35 am

I shutter at the thought that someone might, since it sat abandoned so long after it closed, deem it architecturally significant and make an effort to restore it. Definitely one of the worse cinemas to ever grace the landscape.

StanMalone on November 11, 2008 at 8:06 pm

Nothing but a dirt lot now.

sgbacks on May 22, 2008 at 11:50 am

From 1986 to 1988 my friends and I would go to the midnight movies on Friday and Saturday night at Akers Mill. Most of us worked next door at Toys R Us. We always had a great time, hanging out in the parking lot beforehand,etc. The Rocky Horror Picture Show played every weekend, of course. Other movies they showed quite a bit were Pink Floyd’s The Wall, Heavy Metal, Hellraiser 1&2, and from time to time a regular first run feature that was shown during normal hours. It was great to see the pictures of it on this site as I don’t live in the area anymore and probably haven’t seen that theatre in 16 years or so. They brought back alot of memories. Thanks,Jack for the photos.

longislandmovies on May 3, 2007 at 3:05 am


JackCoursey on January 6, 2007 at 6:29 pm

Here are photos from 2005 of what remained of the cinema: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

NancyDrew on November 19, 2006 at 8:07 am

Akers Mill was a functioning theatre at least until 1996 when I left for college, and I think right up until the time Parkway was finished in 1998/99. Thinking back, Akers Mill might not have been perfect but I loved going to the movies there. There was always a calm feeling about the place, probably because the lack of video games and lobby space eliminated it as a place to hang out. The people that worked there were always super nice. And there was always an excellent chance that if you went to a matinee you would have the theatre virtually to yourself. They also seemed to book art-y films that weren’t playing anywhere else in the area. Of course, I also remember taking my little brother to see one of Hulk Hogan’s movies there, so they obviously were playing a wide range of features.

I agree that the building that houses the theatre probably isn’t long for this world.

StanMalone on October 27, 2005 at 6:47 am

The Akers Mill Shopping Center has undergone a complete exterior renovation up to the point just before the theatre frontage starts. It is pretty clear that the theatre part of the center does not figure in the future plans of the owner and it is probably only a matter of time before that part is demolished just as the southern wing of the center was to make way for Circuit City.

StanMalone on October 17, 2005 at 7:23 am

Jack’s first paragraph puts it pretty well. The only change I would make is in the demolition date. Northlake and Southlake were torn down about 1992 while the Perimeter operated until 1999 and was torn down in 2000.

Akers was the third of four GCC theatres built in the 1970’s following the Perimeter Mall 3, the Northlake 2 triple, and preceding the Southlake 2 triple. The next generation came in 1986 with Merchants Walk, 1987 with Parkside, and 1988 with Hairston, all 8’s.

While Northlake and Southlake were identical and very similar to Perimeter Mall, Akers Mill had several distinctive features. The concession stand was a complete island in the middle of the lobby. The lobby was smaller to begin with than these other locations, and it was almost impossible to hold a crowd of any size inside. The restrooms were upstairs although there was one unisex handicapped bathroom located in the back of the #4 auditorium. The four auditoriums were each 400 seats which made life easy for the projectionist as there was seldom any need to swap prints other than projector breakdowns and putting the new or busiest movie in the Dolby house. In addition to the rest rooms, the booth, concession storeroom (with popcorn popper) and offices were upstairs as well. In an odd move, the door to the offices was located directly off of the public area, a flaw which became evident after a couple of push in robberies.

The projection booth was just as bland as the rest of the theatre. Four Century 35’s with an Autowind 3 platter for each. The size and layout of the booth was almost identical to the one at Perimeter Mall after it had been quaded and converted to platters. Sadly, the Cinemation pegboard system was not used, probably because there was not as much need for it since there would be no changeovers. AM was the first GCC booth in Atlanta with platters instead of 6000 foot reels. In light of my Phipps / Close Encounters experience, I am hesitant to say this, but I think it was “Deer Hunter” which brought Dolby to this location, installed in the #1 house. This was the old push button style of Dolby rack which required the projectionist to be present to engage the Dolby sound following the previews and GCC policy. The Dolby never did amount to much here as all of the auditoriums were long narrow shoeboxes demonstrating the very worst aspects of 1970’s design without having the excuse of being the result of twinning.

Akers did pretty well during its early years due to the lack of competition in the area. It played most of the standard first run movies since by that time the days of exclusive run engagements were history. A year or two later, Plitt opened the Promenade Triple just up Hwy. 41, but there was still plenty of product to go around. In the early 80’s the new Galleria mall was opened next door to Akers Mill Shopping Center, and it included an AMC 8plex. A;though none of the AMC auditoriums were as large as the Akers, people preferred the shinny new theatre with its larger screens and much better sound, assuming they noticed such things. Above all they preferred the better movies which now went to the Galleria. No matter how hard you try, 4 screens just could not compete with 8 when it came to the 8 or even 12 week bookings required to get the better shows in those days. Akers still got the occasional hit such as “Aliens” and “Ghostbusters 2” and of course the great “Ishtar” (interlocked on two screens no less) but for the most part it was now left with the leftovers, and in many cases the moveovers, from the Galleria. There were several years in the mid to late 80’s when the Galleria was the #1 grossing theatre in Atlanta.

GCC did make an effort to compete by removing the island concession stand and installing the new GCC style stand against the right hand lobby wall. At the same time they remodeled the lobby and entrance and, one house at a time, removed the old two position GCC seats from the 70’s and completely refurbished and reseated the auditoriums. Still, bookings are the ultimate draw, and by the 90’s the Akers days were clearly numbered. The Plitt had already closed after trying the $ house route. When the old Eastern Air Lines Reservation Center just to the south of the Akers Shopping Center was torn down and replaced with yet another shopping center, GCC moved in there with the Parkway Point 15. The Akers was closed and stripped bare. The booth equipment was sold as a block to Kings Cinemas, the former Septum company which was running the Cobb Center 6 at the time.

As Jack said, the site is still there more than 10 years later looking just the way it did when GCC shut the doors. The marquee is still on the road, and the theatre entrance can now be seen since the row of stores that stood in front of it has been torn down and a Circuit City Store now sits on part of that area. I can not imagine this place ever being useful as a theatre again and it is only a matter of time before the land is needed for the next generation of shopping centers in this very busy and well to do area. When that day comes it will join all of the other theatres from the 60’s and 70’s in the landfills around Atlanta. Like Northlake, Southlake, and countless other sites from that era they were the ultimate in bland, featureless, movie viewing, and will be missed by no one other than those of us who enjoyed working there.

JackCoursey on June 19, 2005 at 8:31 am

A 2005 photo of this theatre can be viewed at View link