May 28, 2009
MONROE, MI — The Denniston Cinemas closed last week. It was built in 1974 at the height of the multiplex boom.
I worked there from 1976-1979. The owner had been trying to sell the theatre, but got no takers. It had been increasingly difficult to book quality films over the local chain theatre competitor — Phoenix Theatres. The theatre opened with “McQ” starring John Wayne (“Wayne on Wheels”).
Owner Joe Sterling, whose grandfather Joseph R. Denniston was a pioneer in the cinema business in Monroe, said it’s becoming tougher to book films to compete against the larger multi-screen theater complexes, such as Phoenix Theatres at Frenchtown Square mall.
The Denniston Cinema has been for sale for about three years.
“We have three screens and it really is a nice theater —clean and well-designed and everything — but we can’t compete for film because they have eight screens at the mall and the film companies are more interested in that venue,” Mr. Sterling said. “We haven’t been able to compete really successfully even since Regal was in there.”
Read the full story in the Monroe News.
May 13, 2009
LAS VEGAS, NV — With all of Las Vegas struggling, the Galaxy Neonopolis closed last week amid financial problems.
The silver screen will fade to black at downtown’s Fremont Street Experience, when Galaxy Theatres closes its Neonopolis multiplex following Thursday’s shows.
Galaxy managed the 11-screen theater for the troubled center’s owners, taking over in September 2006 from Crown Theatres, which opened the theater in May 2002.
Read more at the Las Vegas Review Journal.
May 12, 2009
HOWELL, MI — After serving generations of moviegoers, the Howell Theater is closing down due to financial concerns.
The downtown Howell movie theater has provided entertainment for the city for more than 80 years, but the landmark becomes nothing but a memory as the theater closes its doors for good. If you’re near Howell, it’s your last chance to grab a box of popcorn, sit with the family and watch the big screen at Howell’s historical movie theater. Moviegoer David Chapman says it’s a shock to see the only theater in town go.
Read the full story at WLNS.
April 14, 2009
I received an e-mail from Empire Theatres in Canada that said that the Showcase 6 Cinemas in Burlington, Ontario Canada will close on April 12, 2009.
The Showcase 6 were built around 1983/84 and opened as a Cineplex-Odeon, later it was sold off to Empire Theatres when Cineplex merged with Famous Players in Canada.
March 12, 2009
BALTIMORE, MD — A press release was issued today that puts the future of Baltimore’s Senator Theatre in doubt.
“We just received notice that accelerated foreclosure is proceeding, said Senator owner Tom Kiefaber.
On top of that, Baltimore City’s transition steering committee apparently given up on the non-profit proposal, even though community leaders formed The Senator Community Trust and asked to become that non-profit owner. One member of the committee said,
March 6, 2009
BURTON, MI — Inquiring about the status of the Miracle Twin Drive-in Theatre, it has been confirmed that it has closed permanently based on this E-mailed reply:
Thank you for contacting us with your inquiry. National Amusements closed the Miracle Twin Drive-in for the season in September of 2008 and will not be reopening the theatre. National Amusements offered the theatre employees positions in the company’s local indoor theatres. We wish to thank our loyal patrons who have shared great movies and memories with us over the years, and hope to see them at our other area theatres.
Please don’t hesitate to contact me if I can be of further assistance.
This means that National Amusements, which began as a chain of drive-in theaters, is no longer in the drive-in theater business.
Read more about its official closing here.
February 5, 2009
Nova Theatres has closed the Nova 8 in Naperville, IL. But don’t worry cinemagoers. It will soon show movies again. Per Nova’s website, “We regret to inform our valued patrons, that the Nova 8 Cinemas is now closed. The Theater will undergo extensive renovations, and re-open as a Hollywood Blvd in the coming months.”
The Nova 8 was opened by Cineplex-Odeon in 1992 as the Westridge Court. It became a Loews-Cineplex after the merger, but was closed in 2001 when that chain filed for bankruptcy. Nova Cinemas reopened it a year later as the Nova 8. Competition from the soon to open Kerasotes Theatres at Fox Valley may have been a factor in the decision to close this place.
The Theater will undergo extensive renovations, andd re-open as a Hollywood Blvd in the coming months.
January 20, 2009
TACOMA, WA — With one chain moving out and another moving in, the Narrows Plaza has a future. As a result though, another theatre will close its doors.
AMC Entertainment will end its operations at the Narrows Plaza 8 movie theater on Mildred Street in University Place at the end of business Jan. 25.
But a theater still will exist at 2208 Mildred St., run by Galaxy Theaters instead.
Galaxy’s existing Tacoma theater on 23rd Street in the Top Food & Drug shopping center will close as part of the transition.
Read more in the News Tribune.
BURTON, MI — The Courtland Center Cinemas closed its doors after the last shows Sunday, December 11. This National Amusements cinema is the second cinema to close in as many months in Genesee County. The Fenton Cinemas ) closed last month. This is the third National Amusements cinema in the Flint area to close in recent months.
They had previously closed the Showcase Cinemas Flint East and the Cinema 10. Looking at the Cinema 10’s attraction board now, the message which previously said to visit the Showcase Cinemas Flint West, Cinema 10 and Miracle Twin Drive-in now reads visit the Showcase Cinemas Flint West. So the future of the Miracle Twin Drive-in Theatre, the last remaining National Amusements drive-in theater, is uncertain. We will find out for sure by May.
January 19, 2009
CHICAGO, IL — “We’re sorry, the number you are trying to reach 773-764-9100 is not able to receive incoming calls at this time.” So said the ominous pre-recorded message when I tried to call the Visionary/Village North Theatre to find out what was playing.
And so it has happened, the oldest operating movie theatre in Chicago has closed. It was originally opened in 1912, thus barely missing its 100th aniversary by three years. The theatre had run through many names. Originally known as the Regent, it later became the 400, the 400 Twin, the Village North, and in its final months of operation, the Visionary.
It might seem rather surprising that this theatre did close. After all, it was the only movie theatre remaining in Rogers Park. While it had no parking lot, it certainly received significant walk-in trade from the community, especially students from Loyola. It featured first-run movies at discount prices. So if it was not a lack of ticket sales, what did the Village North in?