Cinema comes back to town, opens Friday | News | The Press and Standard
by The Press and Standard | May 3, 2017 5:00 pm
Last Updated: May 3, 2017 at 10:39 am
Rob McHone faces a busy week as he strives to see the Ireland Creek Cinemas come to life this Friday.
Before the movie screens light up on Friday night, McHone has a myriad of things drawing his attention, including the final painting of the renovated lobby and hiring the staff.
McHone said the theater building in the Ireland Creek Shopping Center has four existing auditoriums for movie viewing. He will only open two initially. “The other two are not the way that I want them. I’ll have them come on line as soon as they get finished.”
McHone plans to have the two auditoriums set to open showing “Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2” at 7 p.m. and “Boss Baby” at 7:30 p.m.
Ireland Creek Cinemas will start out being open seven days a week as McHone tests the market.
McHone has worked in the theater business since 1988, currently operating cinemas in North Carolina. Opening Ireland Creek Cinemas represents his first venture into South Carolina theaters.
McHone’s work has refurbished and improved the old Ireland Cinemas 4, which ceased operations in July of 2014.
His primary focus has been improving “everything that has to do with the movie: we have new projectors, new sound systems, new screens, new servers.
The newly renovated auditoriums now employ 5.1 stereo, with the capability to providing 7.1 stereo. The new systems, he said, “offers better quality of sound. If a plane (is flying across the screen), the sound moves with it.”
About the only thing McHone hasn’t changed in the movie auditoriums are the seats. He looked at replacing them with newer seats but found that the new ones didn’t match the comfort level of the ones already in place. “The seats that are in there are pretty darn comfortable. I like those seats.”
McHone said the renovation of the lobby areas is “a work in progress. The wallpaper is gone and the walls have been primed for new paint. By Friday, he said, the walls will be painted and the carpet cleaned.
The food and drink offerings at the concession area, McHone said, will be standard movie fare. There will be the standard movie candy and “really good, fresh popped popcorn.”
The goal is to have Ireland Creek Cinemas provide a comfortable place with great pictures and great sound,“so you can hear a story being told as it was meant to be told.”
Every time a new technology appears on the market, it is usually followed by predictions that will be the death of movie theaters.
“We have heard that for years. We heard it when television came out, when VCRs came out, when CDs came out,” McHone said. It is a prediction that McHone isn’t buying.
“At the end of the day, it is the cheapest out of the home entertainment you can go to,” McHone says. “It is a communal experience — everyone likes to be scared together.”
That communal experience, he said, offers the change to “enjoy a good story with your neighbors, instead of watching a small screen at home. You got to talk to people, you get to get out, you got to see other folks — you just can’t social media everything.”
“If you’ve got a first date,” he offer, “you have to take them somewhere, you just can’t tweet it.”
“Come see a movie,” McHone suggests.