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Movies to return to the Miller Theater

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Ask an earlier generation of Augustans about first date memories, and it could include a trip to the Miller Theater.

“So many people say that going to a movie at the Miller was part of a first date or they went to the movies on Saturdays,” said Katie Brooks, the Miller’s sales and marketing manager.

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The Miller Theater recently announced a free monthly movie series to bring the theater back to its original purpose as a movie house. The Miller opened in February 1940 with a sold-out performance of the film “A Night At Moulin Rouge,” according to the Miller website.

One of the theater’s biggest movie events was as the host site of the 1957 premiere of the movie “The Three Faces of Eve,” which earned Joanne Woodward an Oscar for her portrayal of an Edgefield, S.C. woman named Christine Sizemore who received psychiatric treatment in Augusta. Dr. Hervey Cleckley and Dr. Corbin Thigpen treated her and wrote the bestselling novel.

The Three Faces of Eve premiered at the Miller Theater in 1957. Photo courtesy the Miller Theater

Movies and all entertainment ceased at the Miller in 1984 when it closed its doors. A $25 million renovation reopened the facility in 2018.

Starting in June, the Miller Theater will show one movie every month for the rest of the year with a special Halloween double feature in October, according to a news release.

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The movie series will open with the 1980s cult classic, “The Goonies,” on Saturday, June 18 at 5 p.m. The rest of the 2022 schedule includes “The Wizard of Oz” Saturday, July 16; “Dirty Dancing,” Saturday, Aug. 13; “The Lion King,” Saturday, Sept. 17; “Hocus Pocus’ and ‘Psycho,’  Saturday, Oct. 15; ‘Forrest Gump’ Saturday, Nov. 19; and “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” Saturday, Dec. 17. All movies start at 5 p.m. with the exception of “Psycho” which starts at 9 p.m., the news release said.

Queensborough National Bank & Trust Co. is the presenting sponsor for the inaugural season of Movies at the Miller so that the movie series is free. Tickets are required, and Brooks said they are going fast.

Crowds stand outside the Miller Theater in this undated photo from the Miller.

Many of them are family-themed, she said.

Not many younger audiences have seen films such as “The Wizard of Oz” on the big screen as it was intended, she said.

Brooks said she knows of groups of women planning a “girls ‘night” out for “Dirty Dancing.”

They are “crazy for Swayze,” she said.

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Tickets are also going swiftly for the Christmas feature.

The only double feature is the Halloween offering with an early showing of “Hocus Pocus” for the children, and Alfred Hitchcock’s classic “Psycho” at 9 p.m.

To reserve tickets, go to millertheateraugusta.com.

The Miller Theatre marquee. Photo credit Katie Brooks

Charmain Z. Brackett is the managing editor of The Augusta Press. Reach her at [email protected] 

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