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More cinema under the stars in the city


Adelaide’s outdoor cinema season is becoming more city-centric, with Openair Cinema relocating to a new home on the Riverbank next week and the Moonlight Cinema returning to Botanic Park from early December.

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Openair Cinemas – now known as American Express Openair Cinemas but originally the Ben and Jerry’s Openair Cinemas – has operated an outdoor Adelaide cinema at Glenelg Beach for the past six years, but this year it is hoping to attract a bigger share of the CBD market when it opens on the Riverbank lawn next Friday.

Complementing the move will be a new on-site food vendor, Argentinean food truck Chimichurri Grill, as well as a partnership with barbecue-meets-cruise company BBQ Buoys, which, for those willing to fork out a bit extra, will take cinema-goers on a River Torrens cruise before film screenings.

“We’ve really enjoyed operating from Glenelg but we have historically seen more people going on weekends and making a day out of it – going to the beach and then the cinema afterwards,” Openair Cinemas film program manager Marine Grangier tells InDaily.  

“This year we’re hoping it will be more spread out, more people coming across all of the days and having more people coming to the cinema easily as an after-work event.”

Films featured on this year’s three-week program include opening night flick First Man – a biographical feature on Neil Armstrong’s journey to the moon – as well as Joel Edgerton’s powerful film Boy Erased, which tells the story of a boy who is pressured by his parents to attend a gay conversion therapy program.

Openair’s program also includes new-release Bollywood film Badhaai Ho, which will screen in conjunction with the start of the Australia versus India cricket test at Adelaide Oval on December 6.

“We’ve still got all the big films that have been in cinemas recently, like the latest Star Wars and Bohemian Rhapsody,” Grangier says.

“We also really encourage people to bring their dogs because we’ve always been a dog-friendly event in the past but people weren’t sure if they were allowed to bring their dogs. It’s a nice way to spend time with your dog at the cinema, provided you keep them on the leash.”

Live music from Callum Reid, Christian Andre, Cliff Koma and Rob Rowland also feature on this year’s program.

There will be a one-week overlap between the Openair Cinema and the Moonlight Cinema, which will return to Botanic Park for a longer season from December 8 until February 17.

Moonlight Cinema’s program, released today, features eight advance screenings – including the remake of 1970s classic Storm Boy, filmed in the Coorong – and more than 25 new releases, such as A Star is Born, Robin Hood, and Ladies in Black. It also includes older films dubbed “fan favourites”, such as Love Actually, Elf and Dirty Dancing.

A food truck, bar and reserved bean bags will be on site in Botanic Park.

Moonlight Cinema will return to Botanic Park in December.


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