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After surviving a contentious approval process that had residents worried about too-tall buildings in town, Epic Theatres gained zoning approval to build a movie theater on U.S. 441 in Mount Dora. The plan was for it to open this December.

That time line has slipped by about nine months, said Frank DeMarsh, president of DeLand-based Epic Theaters. The movie theater, planned for a space between Wal-Mart and Target on U.S. 441, has annexed into the city and the re-zoning was approved, but now the theater is going through site plan approval and then onto permitting, he said.

“The intent is to have a building plan in hand, and in January construction starts,” said DeMarsh. “Once we start it will be nine months.”

So the new completion date is in fall 2016.

Epic owns 17 acres that form an L-shape between Target and Wal-Mart, wrapping around behind Target where orange groves currently grow.

There’s a sale sign in front of the property because the theater won’t take up all 17 acres.

“We have about five acres and we’ve been talking to a couple of retailers” about buying the site, said DeMarsh.

Epic has five locations in Florida now and is adding five more, said DeMarsh: Orlando, Jacksonville, Titusville, Deland, and Mount Dora. or 407-420 6261