The latest movie theater news and updates

  • January 13, 2017

    Sardis, MS – Panola Playhouse ‘going back to its roots’ in celebrating 55 years

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    From The Oxford Eagle: Panola Playhouse has been a venue for live community theatre since 1962, but from the 1920s to 1958, it was a first-run movie theater.

    This weekend, the Playhouse goes back to its roots.

    On Saturday, Jan. 14, beginning at 7 p.m., the venue will be hosting a double feature of horror films. “Fright Night” will consist of two horror throwbacks: 1960’s “Little Shop of Horrors” and “Night of the Living Dead” which will begin at 9 p.m.

  • January 11, 2017

    Washington, IA – This Iowa movie theater is the oldest of its kind in the entire world

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    From The Des Moines Register: When’s the last time you saw a movie in a theater?

    Take a drive east from Des Moines to Altoona and your experience at just one of many state-of-the-art theaters will consist of ultra high-definition picture quality, surround sound, reclining lounge chairs, self-service concessions and even alcohol.

    But if you continue the drive another two hours in that direction, you’ll find yourself in Washington, Ia. — home of the world’s oldest continuously operating movie theater in a town of 7,000 people.

  • San Antonio, TX – Can a New Partnership Jumpstart the Alameda Theater’s Revival?

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    From The Rivard Report: The iconic Alameda Theater hasn’t hosted large crowds for Spanish-language films and performers in decades, but the storied Latino performing arts venue which now sits in disrepair may soon get the facelift it desperately needs – and with it a chance of revival.

    The City of San Antonio and Bexar County are finalizing an agreement with Texas Public Radio (TPR) that will allow the nonprofit to move its headquarters from its longtime offices on Datapoint Drive near the Medical Center into the space behind the Alameda Theater, located at 318 W. Houston St., and will include investments from both entities to help renovate the historic structure.

  • Westerly, RI – Team transforming Westerly theater into arts ‘epicenter’

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    From The Day: After making significant investments in Watch Hill and downtown Westerly, Charles “Chuck” Royce is now part of a team focusing on the transformation of the old United Theater into a culture and arts education center where students will be able to learn, artists will display their work or perform and the public will come to be entertained. “Of all my downtown projects, this is real and symbolic. It’s smack in the middle,” Royce said in an interview. The newly named Ocean Community United Theatre at 5 Canal St. was acquired in 2006 by the Westerly Land Trust as part of its urban initiative and is now the centerpiece of the estimated $15 million arts and education center. The onetime vaudeville theater, opened in 1926 and later converted to a single-screen cinema, was closed in 1986 and shuttered for two decades before it was acquired by the land trust. Three years after buying the theater, the land trust bought the former Montgomery Ward building next door, and the two structures will be married together for the project that will include a music school, spaces for rehearsals, workshops and master classes, and studios for teaching and producing film and video, live performances and fine arts. There will also be a performing arts center, cinema and art gallery — all with a focus on educating and entertaining. Royce and others on the United Theatre board, who have been meeting monthly to move the multimillion-dollar project forward, foresee the arts complex as a downtown magnet that will draw artists and performers, students and audiences for the shows, concerts, exhibits and classes. “We believe it will be an epicenter of entertainment,” said Bill McKendree, president of the board. “Our vision is not just that it will be a facility, but that it will be a regional mechanism to facilitate the arts.” McKendree said the group envisions year-round classes, events and activities, and maybe a Spoleto-like festival similar to the famed 17-day event held in Charleston, S.C., each spring. Spoleto packs crowds into performance spaces around the city to see and hear both well-known and lesser-known performers doing everything from dance and opera to symphony and jazz music. “Our picture is bigger than the building itself,” he said. “Like could we have an opera festival or taste of Italy for the month of June?”

  • January 7, 2017

    Jersey City, NJ – An Inside Look At The Stanley Theater’s Celestial Restoration

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    From Jersey Digs: When it opened in 1928, The Stanley Theater in Journal Square was one of the greatest old movie palaces and the second-largest on the East Coast, next to Radio City. Presenting both orchestral and stage shows plus Hollywood new releases, it quickly became a cultural hub in the bustling Journal Square neighborhood.

    “This was a refuge for the people of Jersey City,” notes historian Richard Polton. Designed by architect Fred Wesley Wentworth in a grand Venetian theme, the theater continued to thrive into the 1960s, with entertainers ranging from The Three Stooges, Jimmy Durante, Tony Bennett, Janis Joplin and Dolly Parton, to The Grateful Dead. By the 1970s, however, the theater, like many of its kind, suffered from disrepair and became a grindhouse.

  • Buffalo, NY – Dear Turner Classic Movies: Buffalo is the answer to your prayers

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    From The Buffalo News:

    Wanted: A city of movie buffs. Must be rich in history, have Hollywood ties and be worthy of shining in the spotlight. A functioning movie palace of yesteryear is a must. Contact Turner Classic Movies.

    Found: Buffalo, N.Y.

    When TCM reached out recently to its Backlot fan club members for recommendations of a city to host a big event, it was exciting to see Buffalo met its requirements.

    We are more than chicken wings and walls of snow. We are home of the 1901 Pan-Am Exposition and Frank Lloyd Wright masterpieces; the birthplace of famous entertainers and two presidents and location for hundreds of movies. And that one historic movie palace you need? We have six grand and glorious options for you – all still operating, all built between 1920 and 1926 and all ready to welcome a full house of movie fans, local celebrities and athletes (we’re looking at you, Bills' fan Ben Mankiewicz) and TCM hosts to share a love of classic films.

    or more than a century, hundreds of movies have used the Buffalo area as a location, from early Edison short films made here between 1896 and 1904; to battle scenes re-created at Curtiss-Wright Corp. for John Wayne’s “Flying Tigers”; and in more recent years, scenes for “Planes, Trains & Automobiles,” “Best Friends,” “Bruce Almighty” and “The Savages.” The wondrous Niagara Falls has roared to life alongside such co-stars as Marilyn Monroe and Joseph Cotten in the thriller “Niagara,” Christopher Reeve in “Superman II” and even the “Sharknado” gang.

  • Douglaston, Queens, NY – Douglaston Macy’s and movie theater to move out, Lowe’s Home Improvement looking to move in

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    From QNS.com: There are some big retail changes coming to Douglaston in the new year.

    Douglaston Plaza shopping center, located at 242-02 61st Ave. at the intersection of the Long Island Expressway and the Cross Island Parkway, is losing its Macy’s department store and the MovieWorld movie theater, but gaining a big box home improvement retailer.

  • January 5, 2017

    San Francisco, CA – Richmond district’s historic 4-Star Theatre, still without a buyer, offered for sale on Craigslist

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    From SFGate.com: The Richmond district’s 4-Star Theatre, a longtime San Francisco movie theater built in 1913, has been on the market since June 2015 without a serious buyer. At the time, it was being offered for $2.8 million, but now, over a year and a half later, a listing for it has been posted to Craigslist in hopes of attracting anyone who will continue to operate the two-screened establishment as a theater, or else develop it into “a church, school, event space, fitness center – subject to conditional use approval.” The Craigslist posting currently does not list a price, but advises interested parties to call for more information.

  • Richmond, VA – Westhampton Theater building being demolished now to make way for project

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    From The Richmond Times-Dispatch: The Westhampton Theater in Richmond’s West End is coming down. So far, about half of the old building at 5706 Grove Ave. has been demolished to make way for Westhampton on Grove, a hotly debated retail, office and residential development that the Richmond City Council unanimously approved in late July. Construction is expected to start in February or March with a planned completion in January 2018, developer Jason Guillot said. Westhampton on Grove will house retail on the first floor, offices on the second floor and as many as 12 apartments on the third floor. The first floor was to be occupied by a Long & Foster location, a Mango Salon, a Tazza Kitchen restaurant and Taste Unlimited, a Hampton Roads-based gourmet market chain. However, Tazza Kitchen has pulled out. The other commercial tenants still plan to come and will occupy their spaces in spring or summer of 2018, Guillot said. Taste Unlimited is looking at a mid-summer 2018 opening. “The goal for Tazza was to open in 2017, but because of the time to get city approvals, they have since moved on,” Guillot said. The restaurant is working on opening a location in Scott’s Addition.

  • Franklin, IN – Franklin Movie Theatre Honoring Elvis with Showing of Jailhouse Rock

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    From WIBC.com: The Historic Artcraft Theatre in downtown Franklin is showing the classic movie Jailhouse Rock this weekend in honor of Elvis Presley’s birthday.

    Elvis would have been 82 on Sunday, Jan. 8.

    “The fact that he talent as a musician, but he [also] could act. He had acting chops. And so that’s why he did as many movies as he did because he was a natural at it,” says Rob Shilts, the Executive Director of Franklin Heritage, Inc. and the Historic Artcraft Theatre.

    Jailhouse Rock was Elvis’s third film and one of his most notable. The movie was released in Nov. 1957 and features Judy Tyler as Elvis’s love interest. Tyler was killed in a car accident just weeks after filming was completed. Her death had upset Elvis to the point where he did not attend the premiere and may have never watched the film in its entirety during his lifetime. The movie was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry in 2004.

    The movie is showing at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 6 and Saturday, Jan. 7 Tickets are $5 for adults, $4 for seniors 55 and older, as well as college students and military personnel with ID. Tickets for children under 12 are $3.

    For more information, as well as a full schedule of upcoming films visit historicartcraftheatre.org.