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It's stupendous! It's colossal!

Posted by: Colin Covert under Movies, Openings + closings, Theaters Updated: April 19, 2012 - 9:01 PM


Three stories tall, 80 feet wide. Would you care for a large drink and a large popcorn with that?      Photo: Carmike cinemas.

Three stories tall, 80 feet wide. Would you care for a large drink and a large popcorn with that? Photo: Carmike cinemas.


In our era of Big Gulp sodas and bushel popcorn buckets, it’s only fitting that theaters themselves should go supersized. As part of Carmike Cinemas’ nationwide rollout of jumbo-screened auditoriums, Marketing Director Terrell Mayton visited Apple Valley Thursday to host the ribbon cutting for Minnesota’s first state-of-the art “BIG D” theater at the Carmike 15.

This is a theater that could show "Godzilla" life-sized.

The format features a humungous screen 80 feet wide and over three stories tall, a special projector pumping out 20 percent more light than the industry standard, a proprietary lens configuration that fills the screen edge to edge, and a digital visual display with “over 34 trillion colors,” Mayton said. (This may be going overboard on a Titanic scale. Estimates vary but according to Jay Neitz, a renowned University of Washington color vision researcher, the average human can distinguish about 1 million different hues.) There are speakers and subwoofers to beat the band, and Mayton notes with pride that the custom audio system is ready to accommodate futuristic surround sound configurations that haven’t been invented yet. The Regal and AMC theater chains have theri own versions of the ubertheater format as well.

The Apple Valley theater will celebrate the opening with a weeklong series of recent hits, with a special introductory admission of $5 and reduced price concessions. Friday it’s “Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol,” followed by “The Lorax” Saturday, “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” Sunday, “The Vow” Monday, “ Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows” Tuesday, “ The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo” Wednesday and “Act of Valor” Thursday. It hasn’t been decided which first-run film will be the first on the big screen next Friday. 

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