Arts & CultureBlogCulture Briefs

A New Movie Theater Is Opening in Oconee

A 16- screen movie theater is opening Friday at Epps Bridge Centre, the new outdoor mall on the Oconee Connector. It’ll have 3D, digital surround sound and five-story screens, but the best part? Beer! 

Here’s the announcement from the Georgia Theatre Company:

For Athens-area film buffs in search of the ultimate movie-going experience, Georgia Theatre Company is pleased to announce the grand opening of its newest theater – the multimillion-dollar, state-of-the-art University 16 Cinemas – will take place Friday, June 14, 2013.

Located in Epps Bridge Centre near the intersection of GA 316 and Loop 10 at 1793 Oconee Connector in Athens, the University 16 Cinemas features 16 auditoriums, each with stadium seating, wide arc screens, Dolby digital stereo sound and Christie digital projection. Included are two five-story-high, Georgia Theatre Xtreme (GTX) auditoriums equipped with Dolby® 7.1 Surround Sound, 3D Digital Cinema technology and luxurious, high-backed rocking chairs with retractable cup-holder armrests.

The new movie theater complex is the first in the Athens area to house a full-service restaurant, which will include beer and wine availability. The facility also offers a party room for special events, such as birthday celebrations or other private gatherings of up to 75 people.

“This ultramodern theater brings an exciting new dimension to the whole film-going occasion, giving our audiences an entertainment experience unlike any other,” says Bo Chambliss, President of Georgia Theatre Company. “The GTX auditoriums and full-service restaurant are refreshing new elements our consumers have been asking and waiting for.”

Georgia Theatre Company already operates two other theaters in Athens, the Beechwood Stadium Cinemas 11, at 196 Alps Road, and the Georgia Square Value Cinemas 5, at 3710 Atlanta Highway. “We’re proud to add this latest theater innovation to the Athens community, one with unique features for this area,” states Chambliss. “With three contemporary theaters now operating in the vicinity, Athens residents and visitors can select the motion-picture experience they desire.”

For info on the new theatre, visit or call the showtimes line (706) 355-9122.

The classification of the theater’s lobby and auditorium as a restaurant was, unsurprisingly, kind of a thing in the OC, but the county commission approved it last week.

Since the same company operates the $2 theater at Georgia Square Mall as well as the one in Beechwood (which is also seeking a beer and wine license from Athens-Clarke County), we hope this doesn’t mean any of the Athens theaters will shut down. And hopefully, given Cine’s focus on independent and foreign films, it won’t hurt our locally owned downtown cinema, either.

But ACC commissioners are worried about what effect Epps Bridge Centre will have on Atlanta the Highway.