December 1, 2008
EXETER, NH — The historic Ioka Theater, which has operated since 1915 when it showed “Birth of a Nation,” will close its doors on Dec. 24th. The main reason is the high cost of installing a sprinkler system, with high energy costs and insurance costs as contributing factors.
The theater has 500 seats in the main auditorium with a smaller second screen in the basement which formerly served as the area’s YMCA.
November 18, 2008
GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Once the largest in the nation, the Studio 28 Theatres is set to close next week.
That’s why it is no exaggeration to call the closing of Studio 28 the end of an era. During 43 years in business, it was an industry-changing business model copied by companies nationwide.
“She’s a grand old lady,” said John Loeks, president and owner of Loeks Theatres, with a melancholy tone during Friday’s announcement of the closing. “We had a good run — we wish it were longer.”
Read the full story in MLive.
November 14, 2008
After nearly 30 years anchoring Westgate Mall at the corner of Odana Road and Whitney Way in Madison, Wiscconsin, Westgate Cinema will close.
Milwaukee-based Marcus Theatres leased the space and operated Westgate during those three decades, but the four-screen theater struggled to get the most popular art and independent films after the much-heralded opening of the Sundance Cinemas in the Hilldale Mall in May 2007.
REDWOOD CITY, CA — City officials, who tried for two years to close down a multiplex that was drawing patrons away from the “revitalized” downtown area, finally got their wish. The Century Park 12 closed last month.
In 2005, a 20-screen Century theater and retail center was built downtown to bring moviegoers into the struggling Broadway area.
However, the Shoe Pavilion, the only shop in the retail center, is closing because of bankruptcy, and the Downtown Business Group says area store owners have not seen any increase in business since the theater’s closing.
Read more in the Mercury News.
November 12, 2008
HANOVER, PA — The manager of the Diamond Cinema found out his theater was closing when an employee called him Monday morning to say the signs were missing and most of the equipment and supplies were gone.
Rushing to the discount theater, he found a note from the owner saying the theater was closing.
The owner sited last years writers' strike as the cause of a falloff in business. Less movies are being released and first-run theaters are holding onto them longer, resulting in less business in the second-run circuit.
November 11, 2008
NEW YORK, NY — The Pioneer Theater on Third Street at Avenue A, owned by the popular Two Boots pizza chain, held a farewell party last Friday. The 99-seat theater was a victim of rising rents. Four films were shown for free, and all the food and drinks were free as well.
Interestingly enough, the single-screen theater was relatively new, only nine-years old, bucking the multiplex trend, having been built as a labor of love by the pizza chain and programming quirky independent films. This leaves only the Ziegfeld and the Paris as single-screen theaters in Manhattan.
Read more in Vanishing New York.
November 7, 2008
NEW YORK, NY — Two Boots Pioneer an independent movie house on the Lower East Side, closed, effective November 1st. Their last show was “Night of the Living Dead,” in celebration of Halloween. The theater had been successful for nine years, but was facing a rent hike and the end of their lease. The Pioneer showcased much original programming throughout its life, including celebrations of 70s porno chic and a tribute to Luis Guzman. There will be a free party on November 7th to send the theater off in style.
November 6, 2008
ROCKFORD, IL — The Rock River Valley will be without a first-run arts theater for the first time in decades as Kerasotes Theatres closes two of its smaller cinemas.
The six-screen North Towne theater, which showed $1 movies, closed last week and the five-screen Colonial Village, which shows arthouse fare, closes this week.
A Kerasotes spokesman declined to comment on why the chain was closing these theaters, however it operates a 16-screen theater in Rockford and a newer 14-screen theater in nearby Machesny Park. American Theater Corp. is also opening a dinner/movie complex at the Riverside Pavilion next year. However, all of these theaters will be showing first-run mainstream movies.
Read more in the Rockford Star.
November 5, 2008
CHARLOTTE, NC — One year after Red Carpet Cinemas reopened the Eastland Mall Cinema, it has closed.
Red Carpet spent several weeks last year upgrading the theater with new seats and digital sound.
However, some people said they weren’t surprised the theater failed. The theater was located on a lower level of the mall and was difficult to find.
October 14, 2008
HOPEWELL, VA — The co-owner of the two-screen Crossing Cinema in Crossing Center has some choice words about the film industry as he closed his theater Sunday night, a victim of the economy and a decline in the quality of movies.
“You look at what movies are coming along, and it looks like it’s more of the same. I don’t see anything in there that’s going to be exceptional enough that it looks like (business) is going to be better,” said Roy Tompkins, the independent theater’s co-owner.
“Even if you have five good pictures, you can’t live off that for a year,” he said. “The industry’s in decline. There’s no doubt about that.”
Read more in In Rich.