As the most steamily awaited movie of the year hit the UK on Friday night, Iveagh Cinema manager Giles Conlon has said Fifty Shades of Grey was one of the biggest opening nights they have ever had.
Billed as ‘the biggest UK and Ireland Valentine’s Day Box-Office of all time’ the women of Banbridge were set to prove this right.
“It was definately one of the biggest weekend crowds for any opening movie,” said Giles.
“There was only the very odd man there - but really it was very much a girlie night out. There was a good atmosphere, but also plenty of shushing as it was nearly impossible to keep all those highly excited women quiet.
“They were there for fun of it.”
Based on a bestselling novel by E L James, Giles questions if the contraversial movie will go the distance.
“I just wonder what legs it will have - will it continue to run? Certainly if we get two more weekends like this one, it will make the top 20. Mamma Mia and Frozen were some of the previous films to make it into the top twenty.
“I think it will struggle to make number one though as it has things going against it, such as the 18 certificate rating and the fact it appeals to mostly women.”
Bearing witness to the busy cinema and good atmosphere was one excited cinema-goer, Jenna Flynn.
“The cinema was packed and it was just mayhem,” said Jenna, who was there with a friend.
“There were absolutely no seats free - not that I could see, and the people just kept coming in - even when the film was starting they were still pouring in.”
Jenna said only a few courageous men dared turn up.
“There were very few men there, but I think the ones that were had probably been dragged along - they looked a bit worried.
“There were a few people who were a bit loud too and a lot of people laughing and giggling. It was just really good for Banbridge.
“Everyone was in high spirits and there were a lot of real fans there. I’m a big fan of the books and so I was really keen to see the film - after all we’ve waited a year and a half since since they announced they were going to make the movie.
Jenna felt the film did the books justice.
“The two main characters were presented just like the book and they did it all really well - it was worth the wait.
“I’m going back this Saturday to see it again - there’s a group of mates going.”
For Jenna, the best bit was the ending .
“It just wasn’t what I was expecting and I was on the edge of my seat the whole time.
“Now I can’t wait for 50 Shades Darker” she said.