(Twin Cinema Theatre, Tri Cinema Theatre)
1400 West Highway 40
Vernal, Utah 84078
Warren Mott and his sons, Dennis and Randy, opened the Twin Cinema Theatre on 23 November 1973 with “West World” and “Lost Horizon.” Free refreshments were served Friday and Saturday as part of the grand opening. The 12,000-square-foot complex sat on 7 1/2 acres of land and was the largest between Denver and Salt Lake City. The parking lot had a capacity of 700 cars.
In the lobby, a huge crystal chandelier with 54 lights hung over a round concession and ticket counter. At the left end of the lobby were a rock wall planter and second level offices with full-width plate glass windows. On the right side were the entrances of the two auditoriums. One had a capacity of 500 seats and the other 300. The theaters were equipped with carpeting, drapes, “stadium type upholstered seats,” stereophonic speakers, and 21 by 40 feet Cinemascope screens.
A single projector, with Christie Auto Wind systems and xenolite lamps, served each auditorium. Large horizontal platters were capable of feeding the projectors with over five hours of uninterrupted film. The system automatically controlled the lighting and curtains so the booth could be left unattended after threading the film into the projector. All controls could be operated from downstairs.
A marquee was to be installed sometime after the grand opening. Placed outside at the entrance of the theater, the sign would name the current shows and coming attractions.
A reception center named El Diamante was to open on the west side of the theater complex by February 1974. The center was to be used for weddings, entertainment, and other social gatherings.
Kent Limb purchased the Twin Cinema in 1982, converted the reception center into a third auditorium, and renamed it the Tri Cinema Theatre. The theater was later sold to Brent Shiner, who owned the Vernal Theatre and Sunset Drive-In.
Sometime before 2003, two additional screens were added and the theater became Cinema 5.
1. "Twin Cinema opens doors Friday", Vernal Express, 22 November 1973, page 1
2. "Chapter 12: Culture, Arts, and Recreation", A History of Uintah County, by Doris Karren Burton, Utah State History CD-ROM