Mark Stern, founder of Big Picture Theaters in Seattle and Bellevue, visited Mill Creek in January to talk with city officials about developing a luxury movie theater.
At the January 28, 2014, city council meeting Tom Rogers, Mill Creek Community Development Director, reported Big Picture owners are interested in expanding their business to Mill Creek.
Rogers said that Big Picture would rather renovate an existing building than build an entirely new structure to accommodate a one or two screen movie theater with 80 to 150 seats.
Rogers provided a list of applicable Mill Creek commercial property owners and building managers to Stern and mentioned that the old Imperial Garden Restaurant space might be a good fit for their purposes.
Stern and his partners own and operate two Big Picture Theaters in the Puget Sound area presently. The Big Picture Seattle opened in 1999 and their Redmond Theater opened in 2005.
Amy Nile of the Everett Herald reported that Stern would like to build two additional theaters, one in Mill Creek or Bothell and another one in Bellevue. She said, “Big Picture is ready to start construction as soon as it finds the right space.”
Big Picture Theaters are small cozy venues that cater to adult tastes. They show first run films using state-of-the-art digital projectors and sound systems to small audiences, serve alcoholic beverages to patrons’ seats, and offer high-end snacks such as gourmet popcorn with cheddar cheese sprinkled on top.
Stern’s theaters can be booked for corporate events and parties and have all the audio/visual bells and whistles to customize a group experience.