The Roulette Cinema of East Sale is a crowd favourite within the RAAF and has a history dating back to 1944. Below is a timeline from the origination of the cinema through until now.

JULY 1944

The RAAF Mobile Cinema Unit arrived to show Victory through air power, indicating that the cinema was not yet in operation.


Pictures are shown six nights per week. They were well patronised, indicating that the cinema was officially open! The original building used to house the cinema is now the gymnasium.


Unit Cinema Committee is mentioned.


The Unit Cinema continues to offer showings six nights each week with each set of features is shown for two nights, giving three complete programme changes each week. However the films received are generally old and of average quality, in spite of this the cinema continues to be well patronised.


Dances were held as usual on Friday nights in the Unit Cinema. The cinema must have still had a flat floor!


The cinema is now in the location it is today, which had once been a parachute drying building, and the original cinema is now the gymnasium. The old gymnasium and the parachute drying building had been standard buildings moved from Tocumwal. The cinema had a flat floor and the seats were removable for cabarets and balls, with a kerosene and sawdust mix washed over the floor to make it suitable for dancing. It was also commented that WGCDR Abicair (at East Sale 1949 – 1952 as CO Maintenance Squadron) had directed that Officers were to sit on the right-hand side, and Other Rank’s to sit on the left. Obviously, he didn’t want any fraternisation.


The current gymnasium and cinema locations are shown on the programme issued for Air Force Week confirming that they were here prior to this date.


The cinema was named Telstar Cinema.


The cinema was used for the FACE Concert Party.


SGT Stan McGann (CCINOP) and Mr George Christie investigated new equipment for the cinema to replace the Centrex/Westrex projectors and lamp houses.


SGT McGann, Lyle Marshall and a barracks electrician replaced the existing projection equipment with two Bauer U3 35mm projectors and AC/DC conversion rectifiers to power the new equipment.  While working at the cinema, SGT McGann who was a model train enthusiast had the entire stage area in front of the screen covered with a model railway display. He would entertain children with the train set pre-screening and during intervals. The latter half of the 1970’s saw a lot of road safety films and lectures held in the cinema.


Major upgrading of the cinema and squash court were completed providing excellent facilities for base personnel.


Seats and carpets were upgraded in the cinema.


Cinemeccanica CNR 3-35 Platter system, Panalogic CSP4200 audio processor and Klipsch surround speakers installed.

JUNE 2011

Digital projection system including Christie CP2210 projector and a Doremi DCP2000 server installed. New screen installed.

JULY 2012

QSC DCP100 Digital Cinema Audio processor and 3 QSC DCA1222 amplifiers installed.

We are always gathering information with regards to the history of the Cinema. If you have any more history please contact the webmaster.