I’m a very proud Capetonian (just look at that mountain, bru!), so it was with gritted teeth that I spent the last year getting ribbed by our Gauteng and KZN compatriots about Cape Town’s lack of IMAX, especially since it was the location of the very first IMAX site in the country before the service closed down. After a years long hiatus from the county, Ster Kinekor brought the supersized cinema format back to SA when it launched it’s first venue at The Gateway Mall in Durban in December 2013, followed by another venue at The Grove in Pretoria. Now, six months after that second opening, the Mother City is once again getting an IMAX 3D screen and it’s happening sooner than you might think!
The official Ster Kinekor Twitter account first made the announcement last week, revealing that the next IMAX 3D screen would officially be opening at Cape Gate Mall in Brackenfell on December 12, 2014. The cinema complex at Cape Gate was judged to meet all the stringent physical criteria necessary to house the premium format screen, and the venue has subsequently been outfitted with “a floor-to-ceiling and wall-to-wall IMAX screen, superior acoustical treatment and IMAX’s projection and sound technology” for “maximum immersion”.
Fiaz Mahomed, CEO of Ster-Kinekor Theatres, revealed via press release that a Cape Town based IMAX venue was always on the cards:
“Following the successful openings of our first two IMAX theatres at Gateway and The Grove, and their ongoing performance since then, we have been assessing a variety of sites for the next IMAX theatre. It was always our plan to open an IMAX cinema in Cape Town, and CapeGate was selected as the most feasible venue to accommodate the complex conversion. We believe this new cinema will prove as popular with local cinema audiences as our other two theatres.”
Giovanni Dolci, VP Theatre Development, EMEA at IMAX Corporation, who will be in attendance for the Cape Gate IMAX launch revealed that the company has seen wonderful results ever since partnering with Ster Kinekor to bring the format back to SA again.
“It is wonderful to be coming back into South Africa again, and so soon after the launches of both Gateway and The Grove. We are impressed with the success of the first two sites and look forward to this new theatre achieving equally positive results.”
“We entered into the initial partnership with Ster-Kinekor last year with the belief that it would not only raise our visibility in South Africa, but also set the stage for mutual growth opportunities in the region. It is encouraging to see that this is already bearing fruit, with the CapeGate site scheduled to open just six months after The Grove’s opening. South Africa was one of a number of new markets that we entered in 2013, and it is clear there is a growing appetite for IMAX here. We look forward to working with Ster-Kinekor to further entrench the IMAX brand locally,”
That success and growing audience appetite has led to a fourth venue already being planned, with Johannesburg’s newly revamped Eastgate Shopping Mall having been picked to house an IMAX cinema, opening in the second half of 2015. And as a bonus, while the venue at Cape Gate officially opens its doors on December 12, Capetonian audiences will be able to enjoy a pre-release screening of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies on Thursday, 11 December 2014. They can also look forward to further releases such as Exodus: Gods and Kings (December 26, 2014) and Taken 3 (January 16, 2015) in the coming months.
Last Updated: December 2, 2014