The Stag opened on Saturday August 22 1936 as the Majestic Cinema. The first feature starred Jack Buchanan & Fay Wray in the musical farce "When Knights Were Bold" a film which the Daily Express described as “a rare triumph of unimaginativeness”.
It was the era of cinema as mass entertainment and it was at the time one of three purpose built cinemas in Sevenoaks (The Majestic, the Granada and the Carlton). Such was the popularity of cinema there was also a fourth cinema in Sevenoaks – on Tubs Hill: The Palace.
The Town Council took possession of the Stag on January 2 2009 and its original intention was to open at Easter that year. Pressure from local drama groups helped the Council’s team to work wonders as The Stag had been closed, dark and cold for six months. It re-opened in mid-January with the Sevenoaks Entertainers’ pantomime of Cinderella & the Glass Slipper. This meant the Entertainers continued an unbroken run of pantomimes at the Stag which started in 1990 – a record they continue today. The cinemas re-opened for the February half-term using the flexibility the digital equipment provided and which means The Stag Cinema can show multiple films throughout the week. The first films at the new Stag Cinema were the Disney animation “Bolt” starring the voices of John Travolta and Miley Cyrus, the children’s film “The Secret of Moonacre” and the surprise hit “Slumdog Millionaire”. New equipment was added to show 3D films in 2014 and new digital projectors and computers in 2016. The auditorium seats were completely renewed in 2013 and the cinema seats completely renewed in 2016. The Stag has been open for 364 days per year since the Town Council took over and it has been operating as a Not For Profit Charity since 2010.