Movies returning to Falmouth; Front Room may follow

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FALMOUTH — After a four-year absence, a movie theater is returning to town.

On Monday the town announced that Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Flagship Cinemas will take over the space formerly occupied by Regal Cinemas in the Falmouth Plaza on Route 1.

And for those who like to do dinner and a movie, Portland Food Map reported Saturday that Harding Lee Smith is looking to expand his restaurant business into Falmouth with another Front Room.

The Route 1 plaza, which is also home to Wal-Mart, was recently purchased by Camden-based developer Matthew Orne, who last month said he hoped to bring a theater back to the space.

The Falmouth location will be the 15th in the Flagship Cinemas chain. Flagship was the original tenant of the Falmouth theater in 1995, when it launched its first cinema.

According to a press release, Flagship Premium Cinemas will open as soon as this summer with “plush, power-reclining chairs with ottomans and the latest in digital sound and projection,” as well as reserved seating, self-service soda stations and specialty programming.

“The town is extremely pleased that Flagship Cinemas decided to locate in Falmouth and that Wal-Mart, which held the lease on the vacant space, has cooperated to make it happen,” Town Council Chairman David Goldberg said in the release.

Theo Holtwijk, the town’s director of long range planning and development, said “adding a high-quality movie experience back into the community’s entertainment mix is excellent news for our residents and businesses, not just in Falmouth, but also in the entire region.”

Flagship’s other theaters are in Auburn, Thomaston, Waterville and Wells, Maine; Massachusetts; Vermont; Florida; Maryland; Pennsylvania, and Virgina.

The Portland Food Map report said Smith is in the early stages of developing The Front Room – Falmouth. While no space has been leased, he is reportedly hoping by fall to open a restaurant larger than the namesake on Portland’s Munjoy Hill, with a second-floor function room.

Smith also operates the The Corner Room, The Grill Room and Boone’s Fish House & Oyster Room in Portland, and has announced plans for The Mountain Room at Sunday River.

Colin Ellis can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 123 or cellis@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @colinoellis.

The former Regal Cinema space in the Falmouth Plaza on Route 1, which has been vacant since 2012, could be home to a new Flagship Premium Cinema by summer. (Colin Ellis / The Forecaster)

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Flagship Cinemas of Cambridge, Mass., will establish its 15th cinema at the Falmouth Plaza on Route 1. (File)

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Reporter covering the Portland Public School District as well as the town of Falmouth for The Forecaster. Can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 123 or cellis@theforecaster.net.