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Summertime screenings for kids
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Marty the Zebra (voice of Chris Rock) dazzles in his polka-dot afro circus costume in DreamWorks Animation's “Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted.” The 2012 film will be screened at several area theaters as part of summertime kids’ movie programs.
Several area movie theaters are offering free or discounted kids’ movies this summer.

The 2013 Regal Summer Movie Express program kicked off June 11 at the following theaters:

• Regal Largo Mall 8, 10500 Ulmerton Road E., Largo

• Regal Park Place Stadium 16, 7200 U.S. 19, Pinellas Park

Each location will host the Summer Movie Express on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10 a.m. Admission is $1 and a portion of the proceeds will benefit the Will Rogers Institute.

Following is a list of upcoming films:

• June 25 – “Mr. Poppers’ Penguins,” PG
• June 26 – “Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked,” G
• July 2 – “Monte Carlo,” PG
• July 3 – “Rio,” G
• July 9 – “Coraline,” PG
• July 10 – “ParaNorman,” PG
• July 16 – “Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax,” PG
• July 17 – “Big Miracle,” PG
• July 23 – “Yogi Bear,” PG
• July 24 – “Journey 2: The Mysterious Island,” PG
• July 30 – “Racing Stripes,” PG
• July 31 – “Happy Feet Too,” PG
• Aug. 6 – “African Cats,” G
• Aug. 7 – “Chimpanzee,” G

For more information on the Regal Summer Movie Express, visit www.r­egmov­ies.c­om/Mo­vies/­Summe­r-Mov­ie-Ex­press.

TouchStar Cinemas is hosting its own program, Summer Kids Movies, at Seminole 8, 7990 Liberty Lane, Seminole.

Free kids’ movies will be shown Tuesdays, 10 a.m., at the theater. In addition, the concession will offer discounts including 46-ounce popcorn for $2 and 12-ounce drink for $2.

Following is a list of upcoming films:

• June 25 – “Hotel Transylvania,” PG
• July 2 – “The Smurfs,” PG
• July 9 – “Thunderstruck,” PG
• July 16 – “Alvin & the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel,” PG
• July 23 – “Rise of the Guardians,” PG
• July 30 – “Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax,” PG
• Aug. 6 – “Ice Age: Continental Drift,” PG
• Aug. 13 – “Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted,” PG

For more information on TouchStar Cinemas Summer Kids Movies, visit www.t­ouchs­tarci­nemas­.com/­summe­rkids­movie­s.asp.

Muvico Theaters is presenting its free Summer Film Fest through Aug. 15 on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, 10 a.m., at Palm Harbor 10, 37912 U.S. 19 N., Palm Harbor.

Following is a list of upcoming films:

• June 20 – “Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted”
• June 25-27 – “Rise of the Guardians”
• July 2-4 – “The Smurfs”
• July 9-11 – “Hotel Transylvania”
• July 16-18 – “Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax”
• July 23-25 – “Clifford’s Really Big Movie”
• July 30-Aug. 1 – “Happy Feet Two”
• “Aug. 6-8 – “How to Train Your Dragon”
• Aug. 13-15 – “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs”

As part of the program, a kids’ tray is available for $3.75. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Will Rogers Institute.

For more information on Muvico’s Summer Film Fest, visit www.m­uvico­.com/­Summe­rFilm­Fest.­aspx.

Cobb Theatres’ Free Summer Kids Shows continue through Aug. 1. Movies are presented Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at 10 a.m. Doors open at 9:30 a.m. Locally, the program is being offered at Countryside 12, 27001 U.S. 19 N., Clearwater.

Following is a list of upcoming films:

• June 20 – “The Pirates! Band of Misfits” or “Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted”
• June 25-27 – “Ice Age: Continental Drift” or “The Smurfs”
• July 2-4 – “Rio” or “The Muppets Take Manhattan”
• July 9-11 – “Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax” or “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs”
• July 16-18 – “Rise of the Guardians” or “Hop”
• July 23-25 – “How to Train Your Dragon” or “Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel”
• July 30-Aug. 1 – “Open Season 3” or “Puss in Boots”

For information, visit www.c­obbth­eatre­s.com.

Many of the films being offered through these programs debuted at the box office just last year.

“ParaNorman,” for instance, was released in August 2012.

“ParaNorman” is set in the town of Blithe Hollow, whose locals profit from mining the town's history as the site, 300 years ago, of a famous witch-hunt. Norman Babcock (voiced by Kodi Smit-McPhee), an 11-year-old, spends much of his days appreciating the finer points of scary movies and studying ghost lore. In fact, Norman is gifted with the ability to see and speak with the dead, such as his beloved grandmother (Elaine Stritch). Most days, he prefers their company to that of his flustered father (Jeff Garlin), spacey mother (Leslie Mann), and deeply superficial older sister Courtney (Anna Kendrick). At middle school, Norman dodges bullying Alvin (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), confides in the impressionable Neil (Tucker Albrizzi), and tries to tune out his blowhard teacher Mrs. Henscher (Alex Borstein).

Norman is unexpectedly contacted by his odd uncle Prenderghast (John Goodman), who floors him with the revelation that a centuries-old witch's curse is real and is about to come true, and that only Norman will be able to stop it from going into overdrive and harming the townspeople. Once a septet of zombies – led by The Judge (Bernard Hill) – suddenly rises from their graves, Norman finds himself caught in a wild race against time alongside Courtney, Alvin, Neil, and Neil's musclebound older brother Mitch (Casey Affleck) as Sheriff Hooper (Tempestt Bledsoe) chases them all. Worse, the town is up in arms and taking up arms.

Norman bravely summons up all that makes a hero – courage and compassion – as he finds his paranormal activities pushed to their otherworldly limits.

“Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax” hit screens originally in March 2012.

The animated adventure follows the journey of a 12-year-old as he searches for a real Truffula Tree, the one thing that will enable him to win the affection of the girl of his dreams. To get it he must find the story of the Lorax, the acerbic yet charming character who fights to protect his world.

Lending their vocal talents to the project are Danny DeVito as the iconic title character of the Lorax and Ed Helms as the enigmatic Once-ler. Also bringing their voices to the adventure are global superstars Zac Efron as Ted, the idealistic youth who searches for the Lorax, and Taylor Swift as Audrey, the girl of Ted's dreams. Rounding out the cast are Rob Riggle as the villain O'Hare, Jenny Slate as Ted's protective mother and beloved actress Betty White as Ted's wise Grammy Norma.

“Rise of the Guardians” arrived in theaters in November 2012.

“Rise of the Guardians” is an epic and magical adventure that tells the story of Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, the Sandman and Jack Frost – legendary characters with previously unknown extraordinary abilities.

When an evil spirit known as Pitch lays down the gauntlet to take over the world, the immortal Guardians must join forces to protect the hopes, beliefs and imagination of children everywhere.

“Madagascar 3” was originally released in June of 2012.

In the third installment of the popular franchise, Alex the Lion, Marty the Zebra, Gloria the Hippo, and Melman the Giraffe are still fighting to get home to their beloved Big Apple and of course, King Julien, Maurice and the Penguins are all along for the comedic adventure. Their journey takes them through Europe where they find the perfect cover: a traveling circus, which they reinvent – Madagascar style.

“The Smurfs” dates back to July 2011.

When the evil wizard Gargamel chases the Smurfs out of their village, they’re forced through a portal, out of their world and into ours, landing in the middle of New York’s Central Park. Just three apples high and stuck in the Big Apple, the Smurfs must find a way to get back to their village before Gargamel tracks them down.

The July 2 screening of “The Smurfs” at Seminole TouchStar Cinemas will provide an opportunity for children and adults to catch the first franchise film prior to the release of the first sequel. “The Smurfs 2” will open in wide release on July 31.
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