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In Manchester city centre, in March 1972, when the Star Group converted the Regal Twin Kinemas on Oxford Road (see separate Cinema Treasures entry) into their five-screen Studios complex, they had ambitious plans to open another multi-screen cinema in the city. The site chosen was not too far away, and Studios 6, 7, 8 & 9, constructed at a cost of £130,000, opened on 10th December 1972.
The auditoriums were located on the lower ground floor of a new office block, New Deansgate House, with the entrance and advertising panels on Deansgate Street. An automated projection suite served all four screens via a specially designed mirror system.
The opening films were: Studio 6: “Under Milk Wood”, starring Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor; Studio 7: “Claire’s Knee”, directed by Eric Rohmer; Screen 8: “McCabe and Mrs Miller”, starring Warren Beatty and Julie Christie; and Studio 9: Walter Matthau in “Plaza Suite”.
At least initially, Studios 6 and 7 operated on a separate performance basis, with advance booking, while Studios 8 and 9 presented continuous performances.
Seating capacities were: Studio 6:138, Studio 7:108, Studio 8:141 and Studio 9:120.
Manager Peter A. J. Hannavy, 40 years of age, who managed both complexes, was lauded as probably the only manager in the country - or, possibly, even the world - to have responsibility for nine cinemas.
In common with the rest of the Star Group, Studios 6, 7 8 & 9 were acquired by Cannon in 1985. The cinema was re-named Cannon 1-4.
After the ‘original’ Studios 1-5 closed in September 1986, Cannon 1-4 lasted for almost two years, until closure on Wednesday 1st June 1988. The final films were: Screen 1: “The Principal”, starring Jim Belushi; Screen 2: Disney’s “The Fox and the Hound”; Screen 3: teenage musical “Can’t Buy Me Love” and Screen 4: Tom Selleck and Steve Guttenberg in “Three Men and a Baby”.
Since 1988 the office block has undergone major refurbishment, which has removed all traces of the former cinema.
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