The AMC Randhurst 12 will soon be serving alcoholic drinks in larger cups after Mount Prospect trustees agreed to the theater's request to alter its liquor license, a move the cinema's operators said will make it more competitive.
Under the measure approved by a split village board, the theater can serve mixed drinks in 12-ounce cups, up from 8 ounces, and beer in 20-ounce cups, up from 16 ounces.
AMC General Manager Bob Thompson said granting the request put the theater on more equal footing with other area theaters that serve alcohol as well as the restaurants and bars in Randhurst Village shopping center.
"It puts us more in line with our company's standard size," he added.
The theater initially put in a request for larger cup sizes in October. A letter to Mayor Irvana Wilks said the 8-ounce limit for mixed drinks throws the taste and mix of the drink off because, while the amount of alcohol remains the same, the amount of mixer and ice is reduced.
Trustees Steven Polit and John Matuszak voted against the changes.
Polit said he initially was opposed to the theater serving alcohol two years ago, mainly because of the hours it would be serving. Matuszak maintained that it would be hard to control the consumption of alcohol when it didn't have "visibility of the entire establishment" in a dark theater. Matuszak also said he didn't see any reason to support the offering of a larger beer.
In response to Matuszak's concerns, Thompson said his theaters, unlike most movie theaters, are not all dark.
"We do have, for all intents and purposes, glow in the dark wristbands," he added, making it "so much easier" for security to monitor who is drinking.
Thompson noted that the theater is approaching 1 million guests since it opened two years ago, and in that time it has served more than 120,000 alcoholic drinks while maintaining a clean record.
Trustee Paul Hoefert, who at first was opposed to the theater selling alcohol, said the theater's record so far is a credit to its management.
"I think the positive experience -- or non-negative experience, let's put it that way -- that we have had with the theater serving alcohol certainly says something about how you are managing the situation," he said.