Wiesbaden AAFES theater renovation completed in time for Star Wars
December 18, 2015
WIESBADEN, Germany — Stars Wars fans in Wiesbaden got a special treat for the first showing of “The Force Awakens”: a new movie theater.
AAFES’ Taunus Theater reopened Thursday night for a midnight screening of the new Star Wars movie after nearly a year of renovations.
“When my group of friends walked in, we were all saying, ‘Wow.’ It’s just amazing how much it’s changed; it’s really cool,” said Spc. Michael Sadler, with the 2nd Military Intelligence Brigade in Wiesbaden.
Since the Army and Air Force Exchange Service closed the 780-seat theater in January, the interior has been completely remodeled, with new air conditioning and bathrooms, better seats and modern projection and sound equipment, said John Chatman, the theater supervisor.
Sadler was also impressed by the lighting and amount of legroom.
A temporary movie theater on Clay Kaserne had low attendance, as many people preferred to drive an hour to Ramstein Air Base or wait for off-base theaters in Wiesbaden and Frankfurt to show movies in English. The timing of the theater reopening and the first screening of the much-anticipated Star Wars movie was a coincidence, Chatman said.
Sgt. Justin Mott, an avionics technician, was the first person in line; he had been waiting since noon for the doors to open at 10 p.m. He was joined later by his wife, Sonya, and daughter, Chiara. Mott was looking forward to continuing a family tradition of enjoying the franchise with his daughter.
“I was watching (the original trilogy) with my parents, and my aunts and uncles,” he said. “They passed it along to me, and now here I am, passing it along again.”