Plaza Theatre

Hudson's Bay Centre,
Toronto, ON M4W 1A0

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The Plaza Theatre was located at the corner of Bloor and Yonge at Hudson’s Bay Centre in downtown Toronto and opened in 1976.

Famous Players owned this twin theatre, which had Dolby stereo sound and 1,060 seats.

Sadly, the Plaza Theatre closed in 2001 when the lease expired.

Contributed by Chad Irish

Recent comments (view all 11 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 13, 2009 at 5:52 pm

The Plaza Twin was designed by architect Mandel Sprachman, known for his restoration work on the Elgin and Winter Garden Theatres and for designing the first large multiplex, Nat Taylor’s Eaton Centre Cinemas, also in Toronto.

The Plaza Twin was featured in a special Modern Theatre issue of Boxoffice Magazine published on August 2, 1976. The recently opened Famous Players house had 1049 seats, with 664 in the larger and 385 in the smaller auditorium.

Jon Lidolt
Jon Lidolt on August 28, 2009 at 3:18 am

Art Deco does not describe the interior of this twin cinema – bland would be more accurate. There was nothing memorable about it at all. It’s only redeeming feature was it’s excellent location in the middle of downtown Toronto next to the subway entrance.

JohnnyCool
JohnnyCool on January 10, 2010 at 11:15 am

Indeed, this cinema’s interior was pedestrian but it excellenty located. I recall being blown away by Raging Bull here on its first release.

telliott
telliott on February 25, 2010 at 2:01 pm

I often wonder what they use all the space for cinemas such as these after they close. I mean, when you walk by the entrance at the Hudson’s Bay Centre, you would never know a theatre ever existed there. Are the 2 cinemas still sitting there empty after all these years? Makes you wonder what they could use them for now. Even a twin cinema still open at this location would be better than nothing. You didn’t even have to go outside when you got off the subway. It was practically across the hall of the mall.

gordonmcleod
gordonmcleod on May 22, 2013 at 6:02 am

Famous did not choose to close but were evicted as the space was required for the new heating system that was being installed and the auditorium is now a boiler room

DavidDymond
DavidDymond on May 22, 2013 at 12:29 pm

Famous Players would have to had to spend a fortune to make this theatre wheelchair accessible — and about the same time they were ordered to upgrade the Uptown, the Eglinton and the Plaza 1 & 2 — Famous Players chose wisely to close these theatres rather than spend any more money on them!!

rivest266
rivest266 on March 1, 2014 at 2:37 pm

April 8th, 1976 grand opening ad in photo section.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 1, 2014 at 2:52 pm

The August 2, 1976, Boxoffice article about the Plaza Twin starts on this page. It was, as other comments have noted, a very spare theater, not at all Art Deco in style. It would be best described as Midcentury Modern, but Streamline Modern would be far more apt than Art Deco.

DavidDymond
DavidDymond on March 1, 2014 at 5:15 pm

This theatre opened in the spring of 1976 with All the President’s Men as one of its opening attractions. I attended this theatre week after its opening. Grant Millar was the first manager.

Jason Whyte
Jason Whyte on March 1, 2014 at 6:05 pm

Great to see some pics of the place from the old Box Office Magazine. I’m guessing as the theater wore on it probably was renovated to look more like a standard, traditional Famous Players cinema. Would love to see more photos of this place over the decades.

Apparently I walked right by the entrance to this cinema last fall while in town for TIFF and didn’t even realize it!

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