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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Gallagher Theater brings movies to campus

Betty Hurd

Inside the Gallagher Theater in the Student Union on April 11. Hundreds of students use the theater to learn, perform and watch movies every week.

Wildcats, we have a venue for one of America’s favorite pastimes right under our noses. Most of us pass by it each day. The Gallagher Theater is located conveniently within the food court in the Student Union Memorial Center; its posters outline both current and upcoming showings of a variety of films, and on movie nights, the unmistakable scent of popcorn lingers in the air from the box office.

The theater has been showing movies Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday this semester, while in the fall semester movies will be shown Thursday, Friday and Saturday, according to Christina Partica, the sales coordinator at the Student Union who also manages the Games Room, Gallagher Theater and the union art galleries.

RELATED: Games Room at UA steps up their game

According to Partica, these movies are chosen as part of a collaboration between herself and the students who work in the space.

“We have a couple of student leads that run the Games Room and Gallagher Theater, and their input is taken into account, as well as the hourly students, the leads, and the employees both contribute to the decision-making,” Partica said.

Partica said the movies are also based off of what is popular at the moment.

“This month we’ve been showing a lot of Oscar films, because the Oscars just wrapped up, and also just what seems popular on campus,” she said. “Horror movies are always a big hit; it’s just kind of what’s going on on campus, what the students feel [is] the most popular. There’s not really an equation or a formula, it’s kind of based on demand.”

The theater also hosts movie theme months. Partica said Gallagher’s most successful themed month was Monster Movie Madness month in October. Students can look forward to this themed month in the fall semester, as Partica said they will bring it back again.

Partica said the theater tries to center themed months around holidays; for instance, in February they did a Valentine’s/anti-Valentine’s theme where one week they had all romantic movies and then the next week it was all anti-love movies, followed by mushy romantic films.

Gallagher also features Foreign Film Fridays. “The Dressmaker” and “Skiptrace” will play April 21 and 28, respectively.

“[The theater has] generally diverse film choices,” said Catherine Weibel, a freshman majoring in math and physics.

Partica said she thinks the theater provides affordable entertainment for students on-campus. Tickets at Gallagher Theater are $3 each.

“The movies are really expensive; I went to one myself last week and I was like, ‘wow, this really adds up,’” Partica said. “It saves students a lot of money, it’s right here on campus. You can use CatCash. It’s a convenient, safe, easy, affordable—all those adjectives—type of location for students on campus.”

The theater is also used for classes. Zachary Graves, a freshman with an undecided major, said he’s never seen a movie in the theater but has been there for a class.

“I enjoyed the class in there; it’s a very comfortable place,” Graves said. “It’s probably one of my favorite classrooms out of the whole university, next to Koffler.”

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Partica said the Gallagher Theater has found great success in the past year by printing tiny flyers that list all the movies they have for the entirety of the month. These flyers are handed out at Park Student Union and Highland Market. 

Of course, Gallagher Theater also advertises their showings with the movie posters in front of the theater and with ads on the centerpieces found on tables in the Student Union Memorial Center.

One of the next upcoming films the theater will show is Marvel’s “Doctor Strange.” The film will play on April 20 at 5 and 8 p.m., April 22 at 2 p.m., and April 23 at 2 and 5 p.m. 

Following “Doctor Strange” is the John Hughes classic “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” which will play April 27 at 5 and 8 p.m., April 29 at 7 p.m., and April 30 at 2 and 5 p.m. 

Partica said Gallagher Theater takes suggestions at the box office. Feel free to leave a request or email recommendations to and see if your requests come to fruition on the big screen.

For more information about Gallagher Theater, check out their website at

Follow Kacie Lillejord on Twitter.

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