REG United Artists Pennsauken

Routes 73 and 130,
Pennsauken, NJ 08110

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Showing 26 - 39 of 39 comments

RickB on January 14, 2005 at 1:54 pm

Demolition is now scheduled for this month. Local news story:
View link

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on December 25, 2004 at 10:22 pm

With the passing of the Pennsauken theatre, the only two theatres left from the Sameric days in the Philadelphia are: The REG/UA (Eric) Montgomeryville 7 Theatre and the REG/Ua (RKO Stanley Warner/Eric)Moorestown 7 Theatre.

jaybee10108081 on November 23, 2004 at 9:04 pm


Th entire theatre complex is now fenced in by the demolition contractors, (a six foot high fence). The facade of the UA/Regal entrance has slipped down revealing the original green & white stripes of the former Eric II canopy, I shot this several times from several different angles. I also found & shot the base, on the roof of Eric I which used to support the, (long gone), Eric tower sign.

Note, on a prior interior shoot, I found, located & shot the original Eric II box office & booth steps.

Note, on a prior visit I located the original Eric II box office & booth steps, all documented on video.

jaybee10108081 on October 21, 2004 at 6:33 pm

Just a revisit to the site, I have received several private messages from other Pennsauken managers, thank you!

jaybee10108081 on September 19, 2004 at 12:55 pm

I wish I had photos too, worked their long enough as manager, anyway – after speaking with Pennsauken Mart Security & the owner of the Mart I was granted permission, in early July, 2004, to access the complex with my professional video camera, keep in mind, this was about 30 days or so after Regal vacated the building. I had gained permission to shoot anywhere & everywhere & was shocked at what I saw, Rentalguy, you are absolutely correct in your description of the most outlandish recreation of modern day theatre design, looked like some kid sat down with a ruler & put it together. Unbelievable! And I was further shocked as to the conditions Regal had left, they slashed every screen, left entire phone systems, office furniture, concession equipment & supplies, projection booth equipment as well as full reels of film. I just completed editing the video, added music, graphics, (which describe anything I could find in regard to the orginal Erics I & II), I used high intensity video lighting & the completed video is excellent. ALSO, UA had transformed the former (two) smoking balconies in Eric I into excutive ‘regional’ offices, the signs advising of same still hung on the wall. It appeared that Regal never utilized these areas other than for storage. If anyone has an interest in the VHS video, (about 25 minutes), contact me at or, (856)228-1672.

rentalguy on September 18, 2004 at 6:47 pm

I beg to differ on the Franklin Mills 14. The GCC Franklin Mills 10 used to be a free standing building seperate from the Franklin Mills Mall. I remember seeing The Firm there, back then GCC had a concession with Taco Bell. Why that idea never worked I’ll never know, I guess the yields were better for popcorn. GCC decided to abandon that complex and build a brand new complex inside the Franlin Mills Mall. This was an odd move as the Franklin Mills 10 was a very young theatre. The new 14 is a real nice theatre with stadium seats and two THX houses-No Taco Bell though. AMC purchased the bankrupt GCC chain, if you look carefully you can still see where the GCC decorations were. Also the Pepsi logos were scraped off the cupholder armrests.

On the Pennsauken 11, I wish someone had photos of the old complex, especially the Big house before it was split. Old Theater 4 and 5 used to be one big screen with a big balcony.

timquan on September 4, 2004 at 6:55 am

I don’t think the GCC Franklin Mills 10 was replaced. It was bought by AMC Theatres in 2002, and expanded to 14 screens. But it is at the same location.

rentalguy on August 17, 2004 at 12:43 am

I worked there in the early nineties, when the Theatre had its most massive and ill-conceived changes. The Eric Pennsauken had an incredibly long life by today’s standards. For example the GCC Franklin Mills 10 in nearby NE Philly lasted less than a decade to be replaced by a 14-plex less than ¼ a mile away. The Pennsauken Hoyt’s 10 barely lasted half that time. The Pennsauken Theatre just kept changing with the times.

In 1991 the Pennsauken Theatre was still an amazing theatre. Dingy, old and badly maintained but unique in it’s odd super-sized sense. The quality of the clientele had slipped horribly over the years, as evidenced by the occasional theatre fight or riot. Still, it would be magical to approach the huge white and green racing striped structure from Kings Highway. Its huge sign spelling ERIC stood on top despite the United Artists buy-out. The largest of the old ERIC chain-though not most notable-That honor was owned by the SAMERIC/BOYD. Theatre 5 was huge with gigantic three way speakers lining the walls. AMC was known for the cup holders in the armrests, Eric was known for large high backed rocker seats. The “Eric 5” faced far less competition than has become the norm, So back then a 1000+ seat auditorium could be filled easily. T2 was playing that summer in 70mm in house five. In a few short months the big old building would be gutted and it’s 70mm equipment would be removed sent to the UA criterion 7 in Times Square. The constant refurbishing was a process that seemed to be never ending in a complex that started with two separate buildings. The incredibly expensive tile floor that spelled “United Artists” had barely been broken in before it was to be torn up.

One plan called for another identical building to be built adjacent to the already gigantic structure-a mirror image. That plan was written off for some reason or another, and a new plan emerged where the two largest screening rooms would be cut in four each. The outside building was painted Coral (NOT PINK insisted a United Artists Property Executive), to match the original color of the Pennsauken Mart. With it’s new 4 screens showcasing a modern if not somber look, the Pennsauken Theatre was an 8 for the Christmas season. By the next summer it would be an 11.

The new Pennsauken Theatre was no longer the quirky super-sized 5, but a poorly constructed and mazelike mess pretending to be a modern multiplex. The new National Amusements Atco “Multiplex” was open, and overshadowed the new Pennsauken theatre. Atco was just a sign of the quickly approaching Competition. By the end of the nineties the massive Hangar sized Loews 24 would squash the Pennsauken 11.

It still had the biggest screen in the area-it’s new theatre 5-old theatre 3, but it is amazing how horribly constructed the new building was. The designers forgot that the projection booth was going to need structural support, creating the need for a forest of columns in it’s already overcrowded lobby, and concessions storage was still located behind a screen. Meaning concesionists would need to enter a theatre with a dolly to remove the supplies. Pity the projectionist that would have to navigate through 3 ill placed projection booths. The High back Rocker Seats ended up in the dumpster (along with the signature Sameric corporation trademark Greyhound statues Duke and Duchess), replaced with awful small seats, with practically no legroom between the Rows. The new smaller theatres practically never sold out, and the Pennsauken Theatre entered a long phase with no major changes, with the exception of sound. The Pennsauken theatre was chosen as one of the 876 theatres in the nation to be equipped with DTS sound for the opening of Jurassic Park in 1993. In 1993 Pennsauken’s cousin the Moorestown Theatre was closed due to a fire at the Moorestown Mall. That facility later was refurbished to the point of losing its identity as well.

timquan on July 26, 2004 at 6:44 pm

I am so sorry to see the Pennsauken theatre go. I lived in Cinnaminson during my childhood years, and my family and I would drive past the theatre in my car every time I went to Cherry Hill. I remember seeing the huge ERIC sign, first in round shapes, then in square shapes. Then the United Artists sign replaced the big ERIC sign on the building in 1992. But the Pennsauken theatre was my favorite place to see movies in the 80s. My first trip there was in 1987 to see a James Bond movie. I have gone back there to see the third Indiana Jones movie in the big auditorium, and in 70mm!, the second Back to the Future movie, and Jurassic Park. I also remember seeing the line stretch outside the theatre for an evening showing of Back to the Future 2 in 1989, instead I saw Look Who’s Talking; but I didn’t see it until New Year’s Eve. When the theatre was remodeled in 1992, I couldn’t believe how many screens were carved in that big auditorium space! So will a new multiplex theatre reside in Cinnaminson? That is what I heard.

jaybee10108081 on June 23, 2004 at 3:53 am

Your comments confirm what I have learned in regard to the final years that the Pennsauken operation was owned by Sameric as well as the UA years. I have exchanged email with a manager who worked the Eric Theatres in both Westmont & Stratford & he has informed me that from the late 1980’s through the mid 1990’s there was no money invested in upkeep of the houses, in fact at one point things were so bad that company pay checks were bouncing. And vendors refused to deliver unless paid in cash.
The woman cashier you refer to is Marie Robinson, I hired her in 1970 & she continued to work there for 30 years.
Sadly, the theatres closed within the past two weeks, (June, 2004), & is scheduled to be torn down, as well as the entire Mart complex to make way for the South Jersey Sports Center. I was up there about a year ago & shot video of the exterior, (from all angles as well as the marquees), & hope to get video of the demolition.

FeverDog on April 9, 2004 at 2:49 am

I was an usher at the Eric Pennsauken 5 in 1989-90. I was 15, and it was my first real job (I was a paperboy for the Courier-Post for three years before). I’d been going there for years beforehand; I credit their lax MPAA policies for warping my pre-teen mind by allowing me unguarded access to movies like “Blue Velvet” and “Angel Heart.” Since it was only a fifteen minute bikeride, I was there every other weekend, forever corrupting my morals.

What a crappy theatre it was then. Sure, that huge house (#5), was great (even if the balcony wasn’t being used), but the other four houses each had their own problems. Number 1 was large, but didn’t have stereo. Number 2 had the entrance door on only one side of the house (which was directly beside the concession stand, allowing a lot of lobby noise to be heard during the movie), so anyone who wanted to sit on the right side had to walk all the way down, cross, and walk back up the other aisle. And this house especially sucked in the daytime, since sunlight flooded it everytime the door opened. Number three was shaped like a shoebox and had a very small screen (and also no stereo).

And number 4 was the worst. It smelled like garbage and urine, the drapes were torn, the curtain was damaged by fire, the house lights were too dim, the projector light was too dim, and the screen couldn’t hold 2.35:1 movies (the movie would spill over the sides and bottom). And there was usually a then-unfamiliar odor eminating from it. (After a screening of “Downtown” I asked an older usher what the smell was. He informed me the scent was of the cannabis variety.)

But Theatre 4 didn’t completely suck. Since it was in such lousy shape, it frequently held B-movies that never did much money (“Some Girls,” “Action Jackson,” “The Wraith”) but rocked my adolescent mind. Horror flicks were always welcome; an “Elm Street” or “Halloween” sequel would inevitably work its way there. I saw “Evil Dead II” there three times. “Cannibal Holocaust” (sans subtitles) unspooled there for a week. And this was where my “Rocky Horror” cherry was popped (I thought it was a slasher flick, so I freaked out when people started yelling at the screen.)

It was also the only theatre in the area brave enough to show “Do the Right Thing” (it sold out the entire first weekend.) I don’t know what management was worried about; we never had a problem with “urban” movies. (Trouble seemed to follow Jean-Claude Van Damme movies; “Kickboxer” and “Lionheart” attracted the type of crowds that instigated fights.)

But back to #5. In the spring of ‘89 there was a staff meeting meant to prepare us for the onslaught of summer blockbusters, notably “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.” So we were prepared for the long lines and general craziness that followed by showing it on two screens for a month. But later that year brought the biggest lines we ever had, and we were unprepared for it this time since much of the staff had turned over since summer. I swear, the box office line was halfway out to Route 73 one Saturday night. Who could have known a John Travolta movie would do so well? I still flash back to those lines whenever “Look Who’s Talking” pops up on TV.

The things some customers did in the darkened theatres then. During a matinee of “Major League” I observed a man with his legs up and a girl on her knees between them. I speculated why we were cleaning up uneaten hot dogs with no buns after showings of “Roadhouse” (could women really have been using them for sexual purposes?). And the crap thrown at the screens during “Wired,” while understandable (it’s one of the worst movies I’ve ever seen), was a bitch to get off.

But I was fired in January 1990. The official reason was that I failed to lock up a supply closet after my shift, therefore allowing hundreds of soft drink cups to be stolen. I was framed; I mean, really: who would steal empty soda cups? But I figured that management was too much of a wuss to lay me off after the Christmas rush (led by “Back to the Future II”) subsided. Either that or she didn’t want me to be eligible for unemployment or something.

I rarely returned. There was some old biddy who’d been working the box office for years, and she was a humorless, stuck-up rhymes-with-witch. I wonder if she’s still there, since the last time I patronized the Eric Pennsauken 5, it was the UA Pennsauken 11. What a lousy layout the place now is. That huge theatre that made Indy 3 such an amazing experience was now chopped into several shoeboxes. When I went to see “Alien 3” the walk through the lobby and corridor was seemingly endless. The houses are arranged so haphazardly that it approaches the scene in “Bachelor Party,” with arrows pointing every which way. Ugh. And since I hate theatres with the aisle down the center, if I’m ever in the area again and in the mood for a movie I’ll go to the AMC Marlton (where I also ushered, but only in the Summer of ‘93 during college break).

jaybee10108081 on December 11, 2003 at 6:38 pm

How come nobody has typed in Sam or Mert Shapiro, or the dynasty they built? A chain of motion picture theatres that from 1965 thru the 1980’s became a giant in the Philadelphia & South Jersey areas? The Eric Theatres were THE place to go! My name is John, I was honored to manage the Pennsauken, (NJ), operation as well as NJ advertising, under the men who created the Sameric Corporation. My email adress is

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on September 10, 2002 at 11:02 pm

The REG United Artists Pennsauken Theatre has 11 Screens, not 10 Screens