Less than two months after being closed by AMC, Central City 10, 909 Higdon Ferry Road, has reopened its doors under new management, with new programming.
Matt Smith, whose Theater Group Inc. owns six other movie theaters across the state, including Riverdale 10 VIP Cinema in Little Rock and Hot Springs 8 VIP Cinema on Lake Hamilton Drive, said the theater opened Memorial Day weekend with blockbuster movies as well as some limited circulation.
“This week, for example, over there at Central City 10, I’m playing ‘Kandahar,’ which is from Open Road Films, and it stars Gerard Butler — a nice little action movie,” he said.
“And I’m opening a movie called ‘Sanctuary’ this Friday… and then I’m doing ‘You Hurt My Feelings,’ which stars Julia (Louis-Dreyfus) from Seinfeld, and she had this HBO (show ) ‘Veep.’ This is just an example of three good movies with stars who would never have played Hot Springs before.’
Smith said that while Central City 10 will get some first-run films, he would like to be able to partner with the Hot Springs Documentary Festival as well as show some classic films.
“I hope as we go forward we can work with the Hot Springs Documentary Festival,” he said.
“That’s one of my goals. I’ve wanted to do it in the past, but with eight screens alone at the Hot Springs 8 VIP Cinema, those screens have been busy with big, first-run Hollywood hits every Friday.
“Well, based on my limited real estate there, even though I wanted to have some screens for the Hot Springs Documentary Festival every October, that would be great. I couldn’t because I had films on the screen.”
Moving forward, Smith said he also hopes to “incorporate some of the classic films and some classic film screenings in there that I’ve done at my other locations.”
The theater was not ready turnkey, he said, noting that several improvements have been made with more planned for the fall.
“It’s summer, and that’s peak season in Hot Springs, we’re a tourist town and all, and it’s also peak movie season,” he said. “So we’ve been rushing to get in there, open for the summer, and we’ve done as much as we can to try to open and move forward. And then we’ll do more as we get into fall and things slow down. down and everyone is back to school and back to the festival and football and stuff like that. We will have some downtime so we can come back and continue our renovations.”
Some of the improvements include new signage, paint, headlights, sound and soda machines.
“It was a hectic time just trying to get open,” Smith said. “Then we’ll spend the summer and then once we get the summer behind that, we’ll go back there and finish our improvements, try to finish our renovation, that sort of thing.”
Smith said Central City 10 will serve standard movie tickets instead of the wider selections and alcohol served at Hot Springs 8 VIP Cinema.
“We won’t have that on the menu at Central City 10,” he said. “So the alcohol and hot cooked food will just be at the Hot Springs 8 VIP movie theater. Central City 10 will have more of a traditional menu — soda and water and candy and popcorn and nachos and hot dogs and pizza and bagels and stuff like that.” But it’s not going to be a situation where you can get hot chicken strips, fries and a cold beer. That would be at the Hot Springs 8 VIP Cinema. So two different menus and two different movie sets.”
In addition to new programming at the theater on Higdon Ferry Road, there’s a summer movie series of “movies for everyone” starting June 5 with $5 admission.
“It’s a PG cartoon and we run it Monday and Tuesday at 11am,” he said. “It’s 10 PG, kids, family-friendly movies. … It’s going to run all summer long. It’s a 10-week program, and during that time frame, we’re going to have $1 sodas and $1 popcorn.”
Some of the movies slated for the series include “The Boss Baby: Family Business,” https://www.hotsr.com/news/2023/jun/01/central-city-10-movie-theater-reopens -under- new/”Trolls World Tour,”https://www.hotsr.com/news/2023/jun/01/central-city-10-movie-theater-reopens-under-new/”Puss in Boots: The Last Wish ,” and “Minions: The Rise of Gru.”
Smith said the theater will also offer $5 admission for all performances on Tuesdays.
“All movies will be $5 every Tuesday there at Central City 10,” he said. “That’s one of the specials we do there.”
Theater Group’s refillable popcorn bucket and Club Rewards Card will also be honored at the theater. Showtimes and tickets can be purchased in advance at https://www.centralcity10.com.
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