THE battle for celluloid supremacy in Dorchester has hotted up with the arrival of 3D films.

The Picturedrome Electric Theatre at the Plaza in Trinity Street has spent £20,000 on upgrading its systems, including two digital projectors and hi-tech glasses worth £40 each.

Owner Adam Cunard and manager Chris McDonald also plan to add two more screens to the complex before a new cinema opens in the nearby Brewery Square development.

Mr Cunard, who says he has spent £100,000 on the cinema since taking over two years ago, claimed that the town doesn’t need another cinema and suggested that another facility, such as a bowling alley, should be built instead.

But Brewery Square co-director Andrew Wadsworth insisted that the cinema was definitely going ahead.

He said: “We have detailed planning consent and are about to start building.

“We have already sold most of the apartments in the block.

“The cinema is already under offer with a very good operator who is well aware of what is currently on offer and aware that the other cinema wants to improve.

“Perhaps they should put the bowling alley in the Plaza.”

The Picturedrome is set to show the 3D Alice in Wonderland film after a £20,000 3D upgrade.

Film buffs will be given 3D glasses but will have to hand them back at the end of the viewing.

Mr Cunard said: “There has been quite significant investment.

“We have also upgraded all of the seating and it is good quality and comfortable.

“I think the cinema is now quite superb. We have spent a fortune on it. I estimate about £100,000 since I took over two years ago.

“There will be major investment to put a third screen in the old bingo hall underneath and there’s room for a fourth screen.”

Mr Cunard added: “Brewery Square will be good for the town but why have another cinema?”

Alice in Wonderland will be followed by 3D versions of such films as Clash Of The Titans, and Shrek and Toy Story sequels.

Mr McDonald said: “The glasses are coded to the actual projector so they won’t work anywhere else.”

The cinema also has a drinks licence which it may put to limited use on occasions.