Hillsboro Eight Cinemas

3306 West Hillsborough Avenue,
Tampa, FL 33614

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Showing 16 comments

Mikeoaklandpark
Mikeoaklandpark on March 12, 2014 at 12:05 pm

It was Tampa’s most beautiful theater when it opened. Beautiful purple drapes on all walls and purple crtians that coved all the screens. I hate Carmike cinemas I think they are one of the worst theaters chainsin the business.

BruceLeroy
BruceLeroy on March 12, 2014 at 5:24 am

I missed out on the theater’s “beautiful” years and instead saw its slide into ignominy firsthand. I worked there during summer vacation in 1996 and have memories of the opening day line for Independence Day wrapping all the way around the building, Twister being shown on an impossibly small screen, and that infectiously awful Eric Clapton/Babyface song from Phenomenon being piped into the lobby on a seeming loop. The idea that the area, and by extension the theater, was in decline is probably best illustrated by the fact that we had two ushers who sold crack out of the bathrooms. I wish I were joking.

It had a lone pinball machine in the lobby, which always struck me as random but charming. So, in one trip you could see Bill Pullman give a monumental speech to a ragtag group of fighter pilots, eat some Junior Mints, play a game of pinball, and enjoy some freshly purchased crack in the parking lot after the show.

SURFACEART
SURFACEART on September 20, 2013 at 3:21 am

I worked here for a couple of years with Cineplex Odeon, my first job as an assistant manager, I started as a projection manager. I also worked at Cineplex Odeons other Tampa locations before they were taken over by Carmike(University Collection 6 and the Main Street 6).I also attended opening day but as a customer, saw “Hairspray” and “Broadcast News”. Really had a nice experience there both as a customer and manager, still remember those fancy purple curtains in the showcase theatres… :)

Nick DiMaggio
Nick DiMaggio on November 18, 2011 at 5:24 am

Thanx for the photo. The Hillsboro 8 was a beautiful and plush theatre when first opened. Yes, I believe the ad did have the tagline “Return of the Elegant Theatre” or something very similar. Matter of fact I remember copying the opening day ad. Will post it here if I can find it.

Welcome back Mike! Nice to see you on CT once again. Hardly ever see you on the site anymore.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on November 17, 2011 at 3:33 am

thanks rivest 266,hope Nick sees it.

rivest266
rivest266 on November 17, 2011 at 12:12 am

I also uploaded an photo. Typical Cineplex Odeon “Jewelbox” design from Toronto.

rivest266
rivest266 on November 17, 2011 at 12:10 am

Did the grand opening ad say “The Return of the Elegant Theatre” ?

Cineplex Odeon ran this tagline in many cities including Montreal and Toronto, where they reopened an movie palace called Pangages AKA: Canon, Imperial with the same tagline.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on May 28, 2011 at 1:11 am

BY the 90’s theatre ads,real theatre ads were long gone.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on May 14, 2010 at 11:02 pm

Carmike was in Columbus,Ga. You guys might have them now.

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on May 14, 2010 at 10:38 pm

THATS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU LET THE CONNCESSIONS PEOPLE RUN THE SHOW.WHEN I WORKED FOR LOEWS IT WAS HARD EVEN FOR A MANAGER TO GET IN THE BOOTH UNLESS IT WAS FRIDAY AND YOU HAD THEIR PAY!i BELIEVE CARMIKE IS OUT OF THE NASHVILLE MARKET NOW ALTHOUGH I MIGHT BE WRONG.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on October 24, 2009 at 7:47 pm

A paying customer should not have to even think about having to walk upstairs. Hey. it was CARMIKE.

Nunzienick
Nunzienick on October 21, 2009 at 7:42 am

Mike, You’re right about that. It was the popcorn kids running the booth! Had I known the location of the stairs to the booth I would’ve gone up and focused the picture myself! A film out of focus for a few seconds is excuseable but not through nearly 4 minutes of credits!!

Jorgito2001, I remember the college across the street but I can’t remember the name. Was it Tampa College? The last time I drove past the former theatre building I didn’t look in that direction so not sure if the college is still there. There’s an apartment complex nearby that I believe has expanded in that direction but not sure how far.

Jorge
Jorge on October 19, 2009 at 7:45 pm

I used to go to College right across the street from this theater. I always wondered why it got “revamped” considering MEGA theaters (of 20 screens & more) were opening all over the area. What a waste of resources. Oddly enough, I never went to see a movie here…never had a desire to + the neighborhood was indeed “run down”.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on October 18, 2009 at 6:32 pm

Nick, if you get a chance could you go to FOREST HILLS DRIVE IN, someone has a link to look at pictures of the old drive in.If you are able,Could you make me a copy of the picture since the only one i have is in my mind.We tried to do it,but it would not work.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on October 17, 2009 at 4:06 pm

I tell you Nick Firsthand after seven years in the business CARMIKE is a second rate player. I know they must have had kids running the booth.NO union projectionists i knew would stand for such shabby film presentation. Sean was born March 28 1988.What else can you do? Managers in my time never would have allowed such film presentation. NATIONAL HILLS THEATRE? very seldom did i have to go to the booth to tell Mr,Pete a film was out of focus.DID NOT HAPPEN. WOULD NOT HAPPEN.