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Experience Where Movies Are Made - The New AMC At Universal CityWalk

By Serita Stevens

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Universal Cinema new theater photo by Hank Tarlow


"We love the things that shock us and send chills down our spine.  We have to use our stories to make people laugh, cry and sit on the edge of their seats,"  Kirk Trutner said as he quoted the studio founder Carl Laemmle and officially opened the newest AMC Universal Luxury Cinema in Los Angeles - the entertainment capital of the world. 


Karen Irwin, the President and CEO of Universal Studios Hollywood, whose philosophy is bringing movies to life by encouraging audiences to tour behind the scenes with numerous new rides and attractions as well as giving them a chance to enjoy the unique restaurants and stores at CityWalk, which recently expanded to include Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville, Voodoo Doughnut, and LudoBird. 


Karen Irwin -President and CEO Universal Hollywood photo by Hank Tarlow

Ron Meyer, Vice Chairman of NBC Universal, had planned the expansion of CityWalk and Universal for almost 25 years at a cost of 1.6 billion dollars developing more production studios and sets for their filmmakers as well as for the fans.


Ribbon Cutting at Universal Cinema photo by Hank Tarlow

Several acclaimed filmmakers joined the opening celebration to shine a spotlight  on the place where movies are made.  These included producers Jordan Peele (Get Out), William Packer (Straight Outta Compton, Ride Along, Think Like A Man), Jason Blum (Paranormal, Purge, Get Out) and the award winning Steven Spielberg (Jaws, ET, Jurassic Park, etc.)


Steven Spielberg at Universal Cinema opening photo by Hank Tarlow

Steven has been part of the Universal family since dreaming of becoming a filmmaker while he worked on the back-lot.  "This is a place where visitors can ride their favorite movies and be totally involved with their fantasies. We create movies that invite fans to enter other worlds for a few hours and actually see where the movies are made."


Will Parker Producer at Universal Cinema opening photo by Henry Tarlow

99 years ago having escaped from the Holocaust - but not before his family had saved hundreds from slaughter -- the 17 year old Carl Laemmle settled in Chicago.  Frustrated by low paying bookkeeping  jobs and seeing the growing popularity of the new entertainment called "movies" he used his meager savings to purchase a nickelodeon.  


Ron Meyer Vice Chairman of NBC Universal at Universal Cinema opening - photo by Hank Tarlow

At the age of 39, this ambitious immigrant used his creativity to open Laemmle Film Service and then later opened the IMP (Independent Motion Picture Company) which reformed in 1912 two studios in Los Angeles as Universal.  The second one - Universal's "Oak Crest Ranch" on the north side of the Hollywood Hills in the San Fernando Valley soon became the headquarters and where Universal City would be built.


Director Lounge's for drinks at Universal Cinema photo by Henry Tarlow

From it's opening in 1915 until 1925, Laemmle's company, Universal Pictures, was the country's leading film producer and in 1962 merged with MCA to become MCA Universal.


Jason Blum Producer at Universal Cinema photo by Henry Tarlow

Deciding that he would bring fans to where the movie magic was made he opened the studio to show the back lots he pioneered the studio tour.  Laemmle's was the only studio that allowed tourists to visit. This  practice that has evolved into a $100 million annual income with Universal Theme Parks in Los Angeles, Orlando and Osaka, Japan. 


Jordan Peele producer at Universal Cinema - photo by Hank Tarlow

Though Laemmle will always be chiefly remembered for creating Universal Studios, we should also celebrate him as humanitarian who used his fortune to help save thousands of lives during a time when most of the world was looking the other way.


Specialty Drinks at the Director Lounge - photo by Hank Tarlow

Teamed with IMAX the new theatre has numerous special features.  The new state of the art theatre is the first multiplex to incorporate Christie laser projection, Christie Vive sub-wolfer speaker audio sound system and Dolby ATMOS with recliner seats that give the viewer the maximum enjoyment.  With reserved seating and the immersive environment, the theatre also offers a unique concession area as well as the Director's Lounge Cocktail Bar on the second level for both pre and post movie enjoyment.  Best of all, visitors are allowed to bring their drinks into the second floor theatres.


Welcome to CityWalk - photo by Hank Tarlow

Discounted parking can be had for $5 with the purchase of a movie ticket…and after you can enjoy the amenities of CityWalk.



Published on Apr 22, 2017

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