The show will go on at Cinémas Laurentiens in Grenville.
The longtime two-screen theatre on rue Principale in the village is now part of the Montreal-based CinéStarz chain, which operates six locations across southern Québec and Ontario. CinéStarz took over on October 1 from former owners Danielle Lacasse and Yvon Miner, who had sold the building and retired after 50 years in the business.
Local movie fans will now be able to see a flick seven days a week in Grenville in English and French, and the hours are expanding drastically on the weekends. On Saturdays and Sundays, the box office will be open from 10:30 a.m. to 8:40 p.m., with up to four screenings each day of some pictures, depending on their length.
“All of my theatres run at these hours,” said CinéStarz President Bruce Gurberg.
CinéStarz got off to a big start in Grenville with two major films on October 1, ‘Venom: Let There Be Carnage’ and ‘Addams Family 2’.
“They’re two, brand-new, very, very strong movies,” Gurberg noted.
The deal to lease the cinéma space from the building’s new owner came together in just two weeks, according to Gurberg, who has been in the theatre business for more than 18 years. The Grenville location will be managed by Gaetan Roy, who also manages the CinéStarz theatre in Orleans.
Pandemic-related restrictions have been tough on the cinéma industry due to periodic closures and reduced attendance. Gurberg acknowledged that “it’s a terrible time” to expand, however he prefers to look forward to future opportunities.
“This is not going to last forever.”
If Cinémas Laurentiens had closed, residents of Argenteuil and Prescott-Russell would have had to travel to Ottawa-Gatineau, the West Island, or St-Jérôme to see a movie. Gurberg is hoping local residents appreciate having a theatre close to home and come to the movies in their community.
“I’d like to welcome everybody from Grenville and of Hawkesbury.”