Brunswick Square Cinema

Brunswick Square Mall,
Route 18,
East Brunswick, NJ 08816

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Large twin cinema built as part of the creation of Brunswick Square Mall in 1973.

Theater space now used as part of Megamovies theater in same mall, but theater design dramatically different.

Opened with showings of ‘Lost Horizon" and “Man of LaMacha” musicals.

Theaters were allways oversized relative to customer base, but sold out many Saturdays and bargain matinee days

Managed for most of its existance by Mr. Edwards, owner operator of Atlantic Highlands Cinema

Good example of a well designed shopping mall cinema. Lease sold by GC to Grant Theaters, operators of Movie City discount chain on early 90’s. Grant split into a five-plex, prior to full addition/remodel as current Megamovie Complex.

Contributed by Gregg Thompson

Recent comments (view all 16 comments)

JackS124
JackS124 on January 25, 2007 at 6:24 pm

The McCrory’s you’re talking about was a 5 and dime store similar to Woolworth’s and had it’s own entrance located where the parking lot entrance to the Mega Movies now stands.

The rest rooms located by theaters 9-13 at the Mega are the original ones from the Brunswick Square Theater 1, which had it’s own restrooms located just inside the doors to the theater and located within the auditiorium. That whole wing of the Mega in fact is the remnants of what used to be the Brunswick Square.

str8bourbon
str8bourbon on May 27, 2007 at 4:35 am

My parents went shopping at this mall nearly every weekend in the late 70s/early 80s. I saw Star Wars here in Dolby Stereo in 1977. I think I rushed over to the Listening Booth afterward to buy the soundtrach album. Many of the classic fim memories from my childhood were at this theater: Final Countdown, Chariots of Fire, My Bodyguard, Return of the Jedi. I kinda miss the old GCC logo that played before the movies.

str8bourbon
str8bourbon on May 27, 2007 at 4:35 am

My parents went shopping at this mall nearly every weekend in the late 70s/early 80s. I saw Star Wars here in Dolby Stereo in 1977. I think I rushed over to the Listening Booth afterward to buy the soundtrack album. Many of the classic fim memories from my childhood were at this theater: Final Countdown, Chariots of Fire, My Bodyguard, Return of the Jedi. I kinda miss the old GCC logo that played before the movies.

RkoRoxy
RkoRoxy on April 14, 2008 at 9:23 pm

I was the last projectionist to run this theatre as a twin and the first projectionist to run it as a 5 plex. I was there during the conversion. In the spring of 1993, the owners of Movie City took over control of Bruns Squ from General Cinema. Movie City ran it as a twin till the end of that summer. The last movies I remember playing there was “In the Line of Fire” in the right theatre and Rising Sun in the Left Theatre. Prior to that was “Sleepless in Seattle”. As a twin theatre, we were still running hour changovers (no platters) using Cinemation 4 automation. The theatre closed around Labor day for conversion into a 5 plex. The theatre was suppose to open for Thanksgiving/Christmas of 1993. There were construction delays and problems with the city and the theatre didn’t open until Valentine’s Day weekend 1994. The big theatre was cut up into three (retaining the original screen in the front theatre 1). They dropped a wall half way down and then divided the back half into 2 (utilizing the original GCC booth for those two screens). The smaller twin theatre was cut into 2 (back and front). Both of the original GCC screens were still used along with the seating in the front half of the theatres. New projection booths were added these “new” front theatres. A hallway was built to go from the lobby to the front theatres down the middle of what was the twin. In the end, we had 3 projection booths, the original GCC booth upstairs and 2 individual booths for #1 and 2. Stereo was added to theatres 1,2 and 3. 4 and 5 remained mono.

Now…McRorey’s closed and was directly next door to the theatre. The original theatre entrance also doubled as a fire hallway with a door that rolled down at the entrance to the lobby. In the enlarging of the theatre, again, in the late 90’s, all of this was removed. A building was added to the side of the theatre creating 4 new theatres. In the McRorey’s 4 new screens were added. At the same time, the original GCC theatre were all stadium seated except for old #4 and 5. These were too small to stadium. So, yes, the original GCC theatre is still there along with the original screen location, but have been convereted to a stadium. The projection booth is all on the same floor now that the theatre is a stadium and what was the original fire hallway/entrance has given way to a brand new lobby, food court, arcade and entrance.

VincentPrice
VincentPrice on October 11, 2008 at 4:09 pm

I got my first job there as an usher in 1987. I left after one and a half years and went to Loews on Route 18 until I graduated from high school.

RCMH
RCMH on October 20, 2009 at 6:32 pm

I was the last General Cinema manager to run the theatre. Closing night was very sad for the staff.

I started with lenny Edwards. He was great to work for. Really knew is stuff. So was Bob Fitz in the booth.

A lot of great memories from that place. The monthy Lady’s Day movie

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on October 27, 2010 at 5:29 am

Opening a Twin with two musicals does not make sense Unless everyone in that town is crazy about musicals!

squid40
squid40 on July 14, 2011 at 4:34 pm

I managed this theater when Len went in for heart surgery. I also was an assistant at Essex Green. Dont be fooled by the “twin”, this theater was bigger than most multiplexes today, 650 seats in the big house, and 450 in the small. (BTW, previous commentor, the bathrooms that were inside the theater was house 2, not 1, it was the smaller 450 seat theater.) Back when they were still players, GCC actually had plans to expand this theater to at least 5 houses, and the plan included expanding in to McCrory’s space. But, at that time, McCrory wasnt giving up it’s lease, so the GCC plans were scrapped. I worked at this theater from the early 80’s, starting on door (ARE YOU ON DOOR?? Well, then, get there!) and eventually managing it before heading off to Essex Green. I came back to this theater, and worked there through the early 90’s. I currently still manage movie theaters, including Egg Harbor Township, a brief stint in Bayonne, and seasonally on LBI. I made my best friends working in the theater, and think it’s the best job ever! (Certainly better than York Steak House!)

squid40
squid40 on July 14, 2011 at 4:37 pm

BTW, not surprised that the lease was sold to Grant, Len Edwards and Eddie Grant were pretty tight!

markp
markp on September 5, 2013 at 5:27 pm

I worked here as a projectionist for a time filling in. Im thinking I know RCMH but cant place a name. I want to say Tom, but not sure. I was also the last projectionist to work at the Menlo Park Twin, worked at the Woodbridge Twin, Blue Star Quad and Sommerville Circle Triplex as well.

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