Event Cinemas

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Event Cinemas
Event Cinemas
Greater Union
BCC Cinemas
Industry Cinema
Founded 1934
Areas served
Australia, New Zealand, Fiji
Website www.eventcinemas.com.au

Greater Union Organisation Pty Ltd,[1] operating as Event Cinemas, Greater Union, Birch Carroll & Coyle, Skycity Cinemas and Damodar Event Cinemas, is a group of cinema multiplexes across Australia, New Zealand and Fiji. In Australia, the cinemas are owned and operated by a joint venture entity Australian Theatres of Village Roadshow and Amalgamated Holdings Limited (AHL); in New Zealand by AHL; and in Fiji by a joint venture of AHL and local investors.[2]


In 1910, Thomas James West established West's Pictures and over the next three years the company merged with other film distributors, first becoming the General Film Company of Australasia, and then Union Theatres and Australasian Films.

During the 1920s the organisation grew further, developing a relationship with Queensland's Birch, Carroll & Coyle [BCC Cinemas[3]], a brand that Greater Union maintains to this day. The Great Depression of the 1930s caused significant changes for the group. Union Theatres was liquidated, and its assets purchased by Greater Union Theatres. British Empire Films, the National Theatre Supply Co., and Cinesound all derived from Union Theatres and Australasian Films.[citation needed].

In 1945 the Rank Organisation purchased 50% of the now stable Greater Union Theatres. The name changed to Greater Union Organisation (GUO) in the 1950s, a time which saw the formation of strategic alliances with Hoyts and the predecessor to Village Roadshow (1955 and 1960) in order to exploit opening markets. GUO became the sister chain to Odeon Cinemas in the United Kingdom and Odeon Theatres (now Cineplex Entertainment in Canada). GUO expanded by acquiring the MGM Theatres cinema chain in 1971, the Western Australia based Ace Group in 1986, and completing their acquisition of Birch, Carroll & Coyle in 1991. The majority of the GUO sites are a joint venture with Village Cinemas (trading as: Australian Theatres). In NSW, ACT, QLD, SA and WA the group trades under the Greater Union and BCC brands and in Victoria under the Village banner. GUO has since expanded into Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates.[4] AHL acquired control from the Rank Organisation in 1984, and continues to run the company today.

In 2003, AHL sold 50% of its Australian cinema operations to Village Roadshow and Village Roadshow sold 50% of its Village Cinemas operations in Australia to AHL and they formed a joint venture, Australian Theatres.

The group has rebranded several of its premier Australian and New Zealand cinemas as Event Cinemas since 2009.[5][6]

In a recent development in 2015, Event Cinemas opened their new flagship location, Event Cinemas Miranda on 2 April 2015. This new "ground-up' development included new premium cinema experiences of Gold Class & Vmax with the inclusion of Dolby ATMOS. This location now boasts 10 screens, Gold Class Bar & lounge along with self serve Scoop Alley (Candy Bar).

Amalgamated Holdings purchased a chain of New Zealand and Fijian cinemas from Skycity Entertainment Group in February 2010, having received New Zealand Government consent under the state's Overseas Investment Act.[7][8] Event Cinemas New Zealand has previously operated as Skycity Cinemas under Skycity Entertainment Group, Village Sky City under a Village Roadshow-Skycity Entertainment Group joint venture, and Village Roadshow Cinemas under Village Roadshow ownership.

Skyline Drive In Blacktown is Sydney's last Drive In Theater cinema complex.[9][10] It comprises 2 screens featuring Digital projection, as well as Dolby Stereo Sound and is branded Skyline Drive-in [Formlessly: Greater Union Drive In].

Greater Union previously ran in partnership with Hoyts in several locations in Sydney, Perth, Brisbane including Sydney's CBD location. As of December 2005, Hoyts and Greater Union have separated their joint ventures in these locations [11]


Event Cinemas is Australia's largest cinema chain and consists of 50+ cinemas across 3 major brands: Greater Union, BCC Cinemas (Formerly Birch Carroll & Coyle Cinemas) as well independent branded cinemas.

Manuka Beverly Hills Casuarina Australia Fair Cinemas Arndale - Innaloo
Bondi Junction Darwin Brisbane City Myer Centre Marion Morley
Burwood Browns Plains
Campbelltown Cairns Central
Castle Hill Cairns City
Coffs Harbour Cairns Earlville
Cronulla Capalaba
George St. (Sydney CBD) Carindale
Glendale Chermside
Hornsby Coolangatta
Hurstville Garden City Mt Gravatt
Lismore Indooroopilly
Liverpool Ipswich
Macquarie Loganholme
Miranda Mackay City
Newcastle Mackay Mount Pleasant
Parramatta Maroochydore Sunshine Plaza
Shellharbour Morayfield
Top Ryde City Noosa Cinemas
Tuggerah Robina
Wollongong Rockhampton North
Skyline Drive In Blacktown Strathpine
Toowoomba Grand Central
Toowoomba Strand
Townsville Central
Townsville City



Vmax cinemas feature stadium style seating with giant state-of-the-art 20m+ silver screens capable of showing the latest in digital 3D film product as well as all the latest blockbusters. Each Vmax cinema contains stadium style seating and extra leg room, extra seat space, contoured high backs, generous armrests and tables. These cinemas were previously branded as G-Max cinemas. Vmax cinemas can also be found at Village Cinemas complexes.[12]

Gold Class[edit]

Gold Class Cinema interior with sponsorship

Gold Class cinemas have between 24 to 56 recliner seats and are offered at a premium rate. The seating is superior to a traditional cinema layout and the experience is complemented by a full bar service including an in-house menu. There is also a full on-call waiter service. Food and drink are ordered prior to the screening and delivered at predetermined times during the movie. In the Gold Class lounge movie-goers can enjoy drinks before the movie, and have coffee and dessert after the movie. Anyone can attend a session in Gold Class but under 18s must be accompanied by a responsible adult at all times, except in South Australia, where minors must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.[13] The experience is also offered at Village Cinemas[14][15]

Dolby ATMOS[edit]

In 2015 Event Cinemas carried out the upgrade and installation of Dolby ATMOS surround sound in its George Street & Miranda locations.[16] Dolby ATMOS is available and limited to the following premium cinema experiences at these locations: George Street: Vmax screenings | Miranda: Vmax & Gold Class screenings. Important Note: Not all films are available in Dolby ATMOS, applicable films can be identified via the code "ATMOS" listed on applicable sessions or consolidated here

Allocated Seating[edit]

At the beginning of 2007, allocated seating was rolled out in the majority of Greater Union and BCC Cinemas (Formerly Birch Carroll & Coyle Cinemas) nationwide. Tickets were sold online incurring an additional booking fee allowing patrons to purchase their ticket in advance. This initiative was launched under the banner Jump the Queue.[17]

Cine Buzz Club[edit]

The Cine Buzz Club is a loyalty program operated by Greater Union, BCC Cinemas (Formerly Birch Carroll & Coyle Cinemas) and Event Cinemas, which entitles members to receive a free movie after viewing six standard movies. Watching Vmax or Gold Class movies allow members to earn more points. Buying tickets online also garners additional points. Standard, Vmax and Gold Glass tickets are all redeemable. There are also special programs for children, students, seniors and frequent movie-goers.[18]

Alternate Content[edit]

Apart from the traditional movies, Event Cinemas now screen special alternate content. Examples include screenings of; Bollywood, Football, Gaming, The Melbourne Cup carnival in Gold Class, Film Festivals, a Queen rock concert remastered in Ultra HD, the Vatican Museums in 3D, Cinema Asia, opera and standup comedy events.[19]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ http://www.eventcinemas.com.au/Terms
  2. ^ http://investing.businessweek.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?privcapId=81676239
  3. ^ Event Cinemas. "Birch Carol and Coyle name Change". Retrieved 25 May 2015. 
  4. ^ "Amalgamated Holdings Limited". 
  5. ^ Neil Dowling and Michael Bennet (10 May 2009). "Greater Union to give cinemas major makeover". Perth Now. Retrieved 10 December 2009. [dead link]
  6. ^ Ben-Rutherford (19 May 2009). "Going to the Movies is now an EVENT!". Movieblog. Retrieved 29 December 2009. 
  7. ^ "Sky City cinemas sold". Stuff.co.nz. Reuters. 24 November 2009. Retrieved 2 October 2011. 
  8. ^ "Sky City cinema deal moves". Stuff.co.nz. NZPA. 7 January 2010. Retrieved 2 October 2011. 
  9. ^ "Greater Union Blacktown Cinema Info". Retrieved 29 December 2009. 
  10. ^ "Bass Hill Greater Union Drive In". Retrieved 29 December 2009. 
  11. ^ "ACCC approves Hoyts - GU divorce". The Sydney Morning Herald. 7 December 2005. 
  12. ^ "About Vmax". 
  13. ^ Cronulla Cineas Reviews. "What is Gold Class?". Retrieved 29 December 2009. [dead link]
  14. ^ Village Cinemas. "Village Cinemas Gold Class". Retrieved 29 December 2009. 
  15. ^ Event Cinemas. "About Gold Class". Retrieved 19 October 2014. 
  16. ^ Event Cinemas. "Event Cinemas Installs Dolby ATMOS". Retrieved 25 May 2015. 
  17. ^ "Jump the Queue". Retrieved 29 December 2009. 
  18. ^ "CINE BUZZ Club; 600 points gets a free standard ticket". Retrieved 19 October 2014. 
  19. ^ "Alternate Content". 

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