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The National Theatre opened on December 12, 1972 with the World Premiere of Gene Hackman in “The Poseidon Adventure”, presented in 70mm. It was the first theatre built in Times Square in over thirty years. The theatre originally housed 1,445 seats, with 932 on the main level and 513 seats in the loge and mezzanine. Its marquee was one of the largest in New York City.
The National Theatre was twinned in 1982 with two distinct auditoriums created. After several changes in operators, the National Twin finally closed on January 22, 1998 with “For Richer or Poorer” and “Home Alone 3” as the final movies.
As part of the Disney revitalization of 42nd Street and Times Square, the theatre was gutted and became the new street view studios of ABC’s ‘Good Morning America’ program.
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