Photo courtesy of Scottsdale Quarter

By Alex Gallagher | September 8, 2021

Landmark Theatres is set to make its presence known in the greater Phoenix area with the opening of its first theater in Scottsdale Quarter this fall. 

The theater will have eight screens to show its selection of sophisticated films and plans to have a bar and gourmet concession stand once it is fully operational. 

“They do a couple of different things really well. They’re the best in digital projection, they’ll have gourmet concession items and they try to anticipate the different trends and opportunities for this area.” Scottsdale Quarter general manager Richard Hunt says. “It’s definitely a good marriage of the two types of entertainment.”

The theater will take the space of the former iPic theaters, which closed in January 2020, and plans to bring a complementary genre of films to the upscale area. 

“This theater is going to lean toward adult fare but there will also be a degree of family content,” Landmark spokeswoman Margot Gerber says. 

While the theater may show some Hollywood blockbusters, it has reported it does better with independent and foreign films as well as documentaries. 

“For example, in our theaters we played ‘Black Widow’ and some of the big blockbuster movies but those don’t tend to do well for us,” Gerber says. “Oscar pedigree films tend to play the longest.” 

Fans who go to watch these award-nominated films can expect to do so in style as the theaters promise top-of-the-line technology. 

JBL speakers will broadcast the innovative Dolby digital sound system across the theater and customers will be able to relax in reclining mechanical chairs. The theater also will have top-of-the-line digital projectors and a 3D system. 

“We always try to have state of the art projection and sound,” Gerber says.

The theater will also accommodate people with hearing impairments by providing closed caption readers and audio headsets. 

It will utilize the already existing bar and offer a renowned gourmet concession items like ice cream sandwiches, trail mix, chocolate bars and sausages once it begins to see a steadier flow of traffic through the doors.

“Depending on where we are with things, we’ve been cutting down our concessions in terms of the food we would serve where there’s spoilage involved,” Gerber says. 

Another hurdle that Landmark Theatres must leap is the competition of streaming services showing new movies on the same day as theaters. 

“One of the big issues in our industry right now is that all the studios have been putting their films out for streaming on the same day that they release them in theaters,” Gerber says. “In order for theaters to thrive, we need a window of opportunity before the films start to stream.” 

Nevertheless, Gerber has reported that Landmark Theatres has seen a rise in its revenue and has high hopes for the theater that she feels is a perfect fit for Scottsdale Quarter. 

“The demographic in the area is similar to other areas where we operate theaters so it was a perfect fit,” Gerber says. 

Landmark Theatres is slated to open sometime this fall, just in time to complement the new roster of retail stores coming to Scottsdale Quarter, incuding Levi’s, Yeti, Peloton and Brilliant Earth jewelry company. 

“It’s going to be a sophisticated setting that’ll blend itself well with some of the new additions we have coming,” Hunt says. 

Hunt also foresees customers flocking to the area making a day out of the new attraction. 

“What we will have are people making a day out of this,” he says. “They’ll be able to go to the movies then go to dinner and maybe shop around in any one of our unique stores.” 

Landmark Theatres management currently is working with contractors to assess the scope of work needed for a fall opening. 

“To be able to elevate that to our retail lineup that we already have and to be able to do a unique movie experience will be phenomenal for Scottsdale Quarter,” Hunt says. 

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