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Dec. 16, 2010

Majestic unveils IMAX

by Srividya Murthy, Print Managing News Editor
Leah Muskin-Pierret
Regal Majestic is home to the county’s first Imax theater.
On Nov. 19, Regal Majestic opened its first IMAX theater with "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I." This is the first IMAX theater to open in Montgomery County, and is the first of four new IMAX theaters to be built in the Washington D.C., metropolitan area, according to Kirby Lawson, associate manager at Majestic.

Regal and the landlord of Majestic, Peterson, Foulger Pratts and Argo Investments (PFA Silver Spring, LC), chose Majestic to be the venue for the new theater around a year ago. The Majestic was chosen because of the wide population that it serves in Downtown Silver Spring, and because of the ability to transform its existing theaters into IMAX format, said Jennifer Nettles, general/property manager at Peterson Management. The conversion of an existing theater into IMAX took three months and was completed Thursday, Nov. 18.

The new theater is about 75 feet in height and 105 feet in width. It includes additional features provided by the IMAX Digital Re-Mastering (DMR) system such as higher quality sound and two projectors in place of the one used in a regular theater. These enhancements will produce a more focused and clearer viewing experience, according to Lawson.

Regal and PFA Silver Spring, LC shared the cost of building the theater, said Nettles. The adult ticket prices for IMAX and IMAX 3D are $17.50, while adult ticket prices for a regular show are $11.

Sophomore Maya Davis does not plan on watching movies at the Silver Spring IMAX, and believes that watching movies on IMAX isn't much more rewarding than watching movies on a regular theater.

"I believe it doesn't make that much of a difference," she said. "If I was okay with watching the same movie before, I'll be okay with watching it in the future."

Junior Kevin Hawkins believes that the extra cost of an IMAX film worth the money. "The IMAX experience is a lot better," he said. "The quality of the movie compared to the regular is much better."

According to Lawson, there is also a lot of community support for the new IMAX theaters. "It's nice to have an IMAX auditorium," he said. "[People] don't have to go out to Columbia to see a movie in IMAX."

The Majestic plans to show a wide range of both old movies and new releases on the IMAX theaters, said Nettles.

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