Sandy Springs Theatre

6125 Roswell Road,
Atlanta, GA 30328

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StanMalone
StanMalone on April 8, 2018 at 1:23 pm

I am sure Cone can elaborate, but it was not closed until about 1979. It was sold to Weis in Summer of 1974 and they ran it several years. I can recall one of the later features as being Ode To Billy Joe because I remember seeing the projectionist local running a picket line there and at Doraville.

Cone I remember the ad for that Hail Hero. The first movie I saw here was Impossible Years. I also recall a four week run of Airport after it left its downtown run at the Rialto. True Grit in August of 1969 is another one I remember.

rivest266
rivest266 on April 8, 2018 at 1:13 pm

Closed 1973. Nice comment, madcone.

madcone
madcone on April 8, 2018 at 9:34 am

Conner’s Capital Corporation was an internal transfer in an effort to divert some money from our real estate to fund the theaters when C&S reneged on our funding agreement.
We opened Hail Hero first run Atlanta at Sandy Springs and Ansley. Michael Douglas first staring role. We had so few patrons, we took an add in the Atlanta Newspapers offering to pay $1.00 to anyone who would watch the movie. We limited it to the first 500 patrons. Turns out even if paid no one wanted to watch Michael Douglas in his first film. Cone Maddox

rivest266
rivest266 on April 7, 2018 at 3:19 pm

This opened on December 18th, 1968. Grand opening ad in the photo section.

Chris1982
Chris1982 on October 9, 2015 at 12:13 am

Stan, I got a tru understanding now, thanks.

StanMalone
StanMalone on October 8, 2015 at 8:46 pm

Chris, thank you for the compliment. I do my best although my memory does play tricks on me from time to time. It is nice to know that there are people out there who value such efforts.

As for your question, the above ad is on the correct page. This is confusing to someone who did not live it, but the easiest way to keep it straight is to remember that the other theater never had “Sandy Springs” in its name and kept the same owner the entire time. It opened as “Cinema 285” and before too long was renamed “Hammond Square Cinema” when the shopping center it was in was renamed. (The reason for all if this is in my intro for that theater on its page.) It was run by Georgia Theater Company for its entire run.

This location started off as “Sandy Springs Mini Cinema” the third of what would be a chain of five mini cinemas in the Atlanta region plus some out of town locations. In 1971 it was renamed “Sandy Springs Theater” by its franchisee when they pulled it out of the Mini Cinema chain when the chain was sold. In 1973 another new owner purchased all of the Atlanta properties and reunited them under the Mini Cinema name calling them “A Division of Conners Capital Corp.” (Except for the Peachtree Battle and Ansley Mall locations which had already been sold off.) In the summer of 1974, all of these plus the under construction triple on Franklin Road in Marietta were sold to Weis Theaters which was a major player in the Atlanta first run/exclusive run market.

This might not be exactly accurate, but it is the way the story was told to those of us who worked there at the time. The ad above is from the spring of 1974 based on what was playing. By this time I had graduated from college and was managing a theatre for Georgia Theatre Company. I can date this by the Papillon sub-run ad and the Great Gatsby ad to the right. (The Lenox ad was for Where The Lillies Bloom.) This was just a month or two before the chain was sold to Weis. The reason such a low rent film was playing in this neighborhood location was simple. The current owner, not nearly as nice to work for as the original people, owed money to all of the major studios for unpaid film rent plus National Screen and every concession supply house in town. The only distributors he could get product from were minor independents that he did not yet owe money to.

As to why Weis even got involved I do not know. They were a Savannah outfit and controlled that market, but they had no sub-run locations here. Maybe they wanted some or maybe they foresaw the coming of the end of the exclusive first run days and wanted a wider presence for the wide break patterns to come. If so they were very smart as in 1977 they got three of the four Atlanta bookings for Star Wars. However, they soon blind bid their way into the poor house and sold off their properties and left town.

Sandy Springs was the only one of their locations that did not continue on as a theater for at least a few years.

Chris1982
Chris1982 on October 8, 2015 at 7:47 pm

Stan from all my readings it seems your are very good at clearing up confusion. I very much enjoy reading all that you write. So the ad in the header is for the theatre down the road not the Sandy Springs Mini Cinema

StanMalone
StanMalone on October 8, 2015 at 11:06 am

Sorry, but it looks like I have opened a can of worms here. The address is now correct, but the name of the theater is now wrong. The name of the theater that the comments on this page refer to is “Sandy Springs Mini Cinema.”

Cinema 285 is the original name of a theater across the road and down a block which was located at 5930 Roswell Road 30328. It is now an AKA name since the shopping center that it was located in was renamed Hammond Square shortly after the theater opened. The name of the theater was changed by its operator, Georgia Theater Company to Hammond Square Cinema in a vain effort to give people a better idea of where to find it. Its page on CT is:

http://cinematreasures.org/theaters/12419

In summary, this page should be named Sandy Springs Mini Cinema. The address is now correct. The status should be “Demolished” and 350 seats can be added if you wish. Under previously operated by, delete Georgia Theater Company and put Weis Theaters. Under previous names leave Sandy Springs Theater and add Weis Sandy Springs. Sorry for the confusion. These corrections should clear things up. The problem stems from two theaters with almost identical time lines being located acrss the street from each other. Also, the introduction is almost completely wrong. I think that Jack was using newspaper ads for his sources and these places changed names and in the case of this location owners as well. The customers were also confused as it was common for someone to walk in and after seeing what was playing ask where the movie they were looking for was. It was always at the other theater.

If you need a nice, short into for this page, try this:

“Built in an existing storefront by Modular Cinemas of America and opened as the third Mini Cinema during Christmas of 1967. Always a single screen second run neighborhood theater. Closed 1979.”

For what it is worth, all of the information on the Hammond Square Cinema page is correct.

StanMalone
StanMalone on October 7, 2015 at 8:15 pm

The address on this page needs to be changed. The correct address is 6125 Roswell Road, Atlanta Ga. 30328. It is now the location of the Brickery Restaurant. When the Sandy Springs closed up, it was completely gutted for a seafood restaurant and in 1990 that one gave way to the Brickery. This December (2015), the Brickery will close and the entire shopping center will be demolished for a new development. This was the first shopping center built in Sandy Springs and dates to about 1960. The theater was built in 1968 and closed about 1979 or so.

The current address at the top of the page is for an apartment complex about a mile south and inside I-285.

madcone
madcone on May 8, 2010 at 8:02 am

I must confess, I loved the movie business. I’m happy to add what I can regarding the Alps Road MiniCinema.

Best wishes,

Cone

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on May 8, 2010 at 7:31 am

Cone,If you have anything on the Alps and Athens Drive-ins in Athens plez add them to the very small intro i did. Great to read your articles. TLSLOEWS.you a theatre dawg too.

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on May 6, 2010 at 10:22 pm

Thanks Cone and welcome to C.T.Mike Rogers and Nick are the men!Old theatre dawgs.

madcone
madcone on May 6, 2010 at 9:36 pm

Sandy Springs and Athens were franchised rather than company owned. Charles and Brooks Schoen owned the Athens MiniCinema. It was the first franchised theater in the world. Jerry Lewis came along several years later. The Sandy Springs MiniCinema was the second and last franchise to open. We quickly learned that franchiseing was not a viable option as we were unable to provide profitable film product in competative markets. When C&S Bank renigned on our financing, we were forced to sell the theaters to pay the Bank. The Sandy Springs and the Athens MiniCinema continued in business for some time.

Hope this helps. I’m happy to answer any questions any one may have. It’s great to learn that every ones efforts are not forgotten.

Best wishes,

Cone Maddox

douglasville2001
douglasville2001 on February 20, 2010 at 11:46 pm
  1. General Cinema
  2. Entertainment Film Works
  3. Madstone Theatres
  4. LeFont Theatres

Still alive & kicking !

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on November 27, 2009 at 9:09 pm

There was also a single screen called WEIS CINEMA located at Peachtree and 13th ave. In Atlanta.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on November 27, 2009 at 9:06 pm

Now playing WEIS SANDY SPRINGS is THE GROOVE TUBE. rated R. Shows at 3 ,4:45, 6:30 , 8:10 and 9;45.
WEIS CINEMAS in Atlanta in Oct. 19 1974 are PEACHTREE BATTLE, SANDY SPRINGS, WEIS CANDLER 1 and 2 cinemas, ATLANTA THEATRE, WEIS DORAVILLE , BROADVIEW 1 and 2 cinemas, and FINE ART. Albert Weis owned walk ins and drive ins in Augusta,Macon,and Savannah is home of operations.

mikemercury
mikemercury on May 8, 2009 at 11:56 am

My father and I saw ‘King Kong’ with Jeff Bridges in 1975. Two years later the cinema began getting a little on the seedy side and played racey material mixed with re-released stuff. Not knowing this I took my first date here to see “A boy and His Dog,” and “Flesh Gordon.”

williams
williams on September 3, 2007 at 11:38 pm

Hi Barbara, You won’t believe this one. Remembering what you said about your father and the cinemas, I Googled Bestoink Dooley, found his picture and this comment from you. Attended the first showing of Romeo and Juliett. Also, Straw Dogs and many Kurt Vonnegut films. Did you Know Lilli Nyyland and her husband {Netherlands}? They had cinemas here in central Florida. Do you remember Bestoink? What was his favorite gift? Thanks you for rekindling all those memories! Memories of Houlihan’s and your laughter. Please send me an email.
Bob Williams Maitland, Fl.

321-356-4020

BarbaraGentry
BarbaraGentry on June 12, 2007 at 5:39 pm

Hey Stan. Cone and family were our next door neighbors, but neither of them were lawyers. Don’t know where that “fact” got started! I also remember the name of Jeff/Geoff Tyre, but can’t really remember any details about him off the top of my head. Dad and Cone founded owned the entire Mini Cinema chain until it was sold. I remember looking at different logos when they were deciding on the one to use. (The corporate name was Modular Cinemas of America.) I don’t know the “story behind Storey” though. P'tree Battle was DEFINITELY the first one to open. No doubt whatsoever. I believe Ansley was 2nd, but won’t take an oath to swear it! I’m almost positive dad
was still involved when Doraville opened — Candler doesn’t ring a bell, but I was only about 12-14, so I don’t remember completely. Also, I believe there was another theater in Athens, GA. My mom’s favorite movie was “The Twelve Chairs,” one I have vague but fond
memories of. I remember taking a bunch of kids from school to
P'tree Battle for FREE, making me very popular! My sister worked
the concession stand at P.B. when she was in high school, too. Both
mom and dad are gone, but I, too, have very fond memories of
that “new concept” in movie theater experiences. Too bad dad and
Cone were ahead of their time. I would be a gazillionaire heiress
today!

StanMalone
StanMalone on June 12, 2007 at 5:13 pm

Barbara: Thank you for that very interesting post. I do not recognize your fathers name, but he must have been the other half of the…“two lawyers who owned the theatre”. I do remember Cone Maddox very well as he was a frequent visitor to the theatre, especially when we had family films when he would bring his children. I also remember a man named Jeff (or Geoff) Tyre who I believe was English.

Perhaps you could clear up something for me. I was under the impression that your father and Cone owned the franchise to the Sandy Springs location and not the Mini Cinema chain as a whole, and that this is why went independent during the days that Storey was contracted to book and manage the chain. Do you know the story behind this?

Also, was the Peachtree Battle the first theatre in the chain? I always thought so but know someone who insists that it was the Ansley Mall which was first. I know that the Sandy Springs opened third, followed by Doraville and Candler Road. Was your father still involved when the last two were built?

I would love to hear anything you know regarding these or other aspects of the Mini Cinema operation. Oddly enough, I did not do much actual theatre work at the Sandy Springs since it required such a small staff. Usually just fill in for sick or vacationing employees or extra help during busy times. For most of those early years I worked at the North Springs, Cherokee, and Atlanta. However, I did do a lot of behind the scenes work there such as film and concession supply deliveries, marquee changes, trips to National Screen, and even spent the night there twice helping to pump out the auditorium when the Laundromat next door would cause a flood.

If you are interested, I believe all of the other Mini Cinemas have pages on this site:

Doraville: /theaters/11795/

Ansley Mall: /theaters/16291/

Peachtree Battle: /theaters/12131/

Candler Road: /theaters/16454/

Chattanooga: /theaters/17006/

Macon: /theaters/17559/

As for the movie going experience, Peachtree Battle, Sandy Springs, Doraville, and Macon were good places to see a movie. Ansley and Candler somewhat less so. Still they were better than most of the auditoriums that you will find in the megaplex of today. If your dad is still alive tell him “Thank You” for me as I have very fond memories of the theatres and the people that I met while working in them.

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on June 8, 2007 at 6:19 pm

lefonts sandy springs seems to do well, its been around a while….

BarbaraGentry
BarbaraGentry on June 8, 2007 at 3:50 pm

Jack and Stan, you have great knowledge of the Mini Cinema chain. You forgot, however, one fact that is near and dear to me: my father, Robert Gentry, and his partner Cone Maddox founded the company. I remember when the P'tree Battle theater was getting ready to open. The press would be there en masse for this new concept in movie theaters, and our house was buzzing with excitement. Unfortunately, one can never predict the unexpected, as an event happened that day which took practically every reporter from Atlanta out of town. The assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. happened the night of our big grand opening.

JackCoursey
JackCoursey on July 5, 2005 at 8:12 pm

Thank you for the update and correction. Although I’ve been able reference some IMPAs in the main libraries of most major cities, I haven’t had much luck in getting hold of criss cross and other such directories for out of state cities. Didn’t get a chance to hit the Atlanta library during my last visit in the area. Greatly appreciate you effort in checking this out and getting it straight. Were the screens at either of these Sandy Springs theatres comparable to the main screens in any of the newer megaplexs?