Cineplex Celebrates 100 Years of Movie Memories
Cineplex Entertainment will celebrate 100 years of movies and movie-going memories in 2012. A special yearlong celebration has been planned to commemorate this milestone. Throughout the year, Cineplex will host a variety of events, exclusive contests, special promotions and much more for guests to enjoy.
"There's something magical about the movie-going experience that brings people together and evokes great memories in a person's life," said Ellis Jacob, President and Chief Executive Officer, Cineplex Entertainment. "Whether it's their first movie, first date or another significant event, going to the movies today creates just as many memories as it did 100 years ago."
The yearlong celebration begins on January 19, 2012 - National Popcorn Day. Guests who visit any Cineplex theatre on January 19th will receive a free small popcorn with the purchase of any size drink. The popcorn will be served in a special retro-style red and white souvenir popcorn box. Cineplex will also launch www.cineplex.com/celebrate100 - a microsite featuring the latest information on the 100 year celebration festivities, special polls and content looking back at the history of movies, highlight special event plans and share exclusive contests and offers throughout the year.
Cineplex has also commissioned Ipsos Reid Public Affairs to conduct a thorough review of Canadian movie-goers habits, preferences and favourite movies and movie stars among a number of other elements. Throughout the 100 year celebration, Cineplex will reveal various survey elements including fun facts and other data that will provide a truly "Canadian perspective" on the movie industry and the Canadian movie landscape which historically has been dominated by American research data.
"When Canadians think of movies we want them to think of Cineplex," added Ellis Jacob. "We are honoured to be a part of so many people's movie-going memories and we look forward to creating another 100 years of memories moving forward."
Cineplex History 101:
As part of our year-long celebrations, we'll be taking the time to look back on the history of film and how Cineplex fit into the big picture. Watch Part I of our look back now then read on for more:
The history of today's Cineplex Entertainment can be traced back to 1912 when Adolph Zukor founded the Famous Players Film Corporation (today's Paramount Pictures) and then a few years later merged with Canadian N.L. Nathanson's company to form Famous Players-Lasky Corp. In 1920, their goal was to build a large chain of theatres across Canada and by 1921 operated 20 theatres with approximately 20,000 seats – a huge accomplishment at the time. In 1929, the first sound equipment was installed that forever changed the movies. Fast forward to 1941 and the Canadian Odeon theatre chain was born with a focus on creating modern theatres with air conditioning and an emphasis on guest comfort and quality film presentations.
The two companies – Canadian Odeon and Famous Players – were competitors throughout the next several decades achieving numerous individual milestones. In the 60s, Famous Players established the first dual auditorium theatre, received permission to open on Sundays and created the trend to locate theatres in major shopping malls. In the 70s, Nathanson’s son Paul started Odeon Theatres of Canada which in 1978 merged with the Canadian Theatres chain to become Canadian Odeon Theatres. A short time later, Cineplex Odeon Corp ("COC") was co-founded by Garth Drabinsky and Nat Taylor, they would coin the name "Cineplex", an abbreviation of "cinema" and "complex" to create the company's new name and feature brand. In 1979, COC created the world's first multiplex with the opening of the 21-screen megaplex theatre at Toronto's Eaton Centre earning it a place in the Guinness Book of World Records. In 1984, they acquired Canadian Odeon Theatres.
In 1997, Famous Players opened the first commercial stadium seating theatre in Canada – Coliseum Mississauga – which began a massive expansion by Famous Players and Cineplex of stadium seated complexes across the country.
In 1999 former COC executives Ellis Jacob and Steven Brown, created Galaxy Entertainment Inc., ("Galaxy"), bringing big-city style entertainment complexes to mid-size Canadian communities. Four years later, Galaxy and COC merge to form Cineplex Galaxy Income Fund and went public on the Toronto Stock Exchange. In 2005, Cineplex Galaxy Income Fund acquired its largest competitor – Famous Players - and renamed the combined company Cineplex Inc. ("Cineplex") which operates the business under the name Cineplex Entertainment. Today Cineplex is Canada’s largest and most successful theatre exhibition company employing more than 10,000 people across Canada.