Cinema North 1-5

3375 W. Siebenthaler Avenue,
Dayton, OH 45404

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The Fox North/West Plaza Theater opened on Christmas 1967.

It was sold to Chakeres Theatres by 1975 and renamed Cinema North. Cinema North was twinned in 1984, and, later, three new screens were built in the back of the theater and the theater became known as the Cinema North 1-5.

National Amusements purchased the theater in 1988 and eventually closed it in September 1998 for good.

Contributed by David Sparks

Recent comments (view all 14 comments)

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on April 30, 2008 at 11:03 pm

Here is an undated photo from agilitynut.com:
http://www.agilitynut.com/06/3/closed.jpg

Jack Oberleitner
Jack Oberleitner on June 23, 2008 at 6:21 pm

When I first came to the Dayton, OH area, the north and Northwest side of Dayton had several successful drive-ins, plus indoors like the stylish Kon Tiki; Loews Ames (a comfortable neighborhood house), the modernistic Fox Northwest and the Ritz (originally a new Walter Reed cinema) and the Salem Mall Cinemas. The latter was housed in one of the nicest, fashionable regional Malls of the time.

When Chakeres Theatres took over the Cinema North they updated, remodeled the facility. A beautiful huge, real crystal chandelier was added to the lobby area. The new Cinema North performed nicely as a “re-born” first-run house.

Sadly, vandals and gangs took their toll on the entire area. Fast food restaurants added bullet proof glass to the drive-in windows and one by one ALL of the above mentioned theatres closed. A shooting in the Salem Mall Cinemas was the final bell for the cinemas that had been struggling to stay open under new, local ownership. Eventually the entire Salem Mall was closed and torn down. While I’m not aware of serious problems IN the Cinema North, parking lot, vandalism there and other locations hastened the decade-long demise of this once proud area.

The sad truth is that many cities have experienced similar problems, or worse. It’s a shame to see so much history and beauty destroyed by a handful of hoodlums and thugs. It’s so much more relaxing to watch a movie when the person behind you isn’t “packing heat!”

TerryBear
TerryBear on November 9, 2008 at 7:58 pm

This theater and the Fox Kettering originally opened as National General theaters. Both got roadshows of movies like “Tora Tora Tora”, “Cabaret”, and “Planet of The Apes”. Comfortable seats, very large screen, and friendly personnel. The theater was built on the border of what was then an upscale area of Dayton.

ZookieFreddie
ZookieFreddie on February 22, 2009 at 7:45 pm

There are two references to a shooting during the showing of Boyz/Hood. Only one is correct, sorry to tell you. The shooting, which resulted in death, was at the SALEM MALL theater in 1991 and not this one.

Mike Richardson
Mike Richardson on May 17, 2009 at 7:29 pm

I just got back from the Dayton Amateur Radio Convention. This is what I saw. The sign out front says: Available, Anchor Associates, Contact: Amy Holter, (513)784-1106. All glass is now covered with wood. All plastic and lamps are out of the marquee. The bulbs and some glass are smashed in a pile in the lot behind the newer section in the rear. Only the metal skeleton of the marquis is left. All three RTU’s above the new section on the rear are missing side panels. Garbage dumped at rear of back lot.

Mike Richardson
Mike Richardson on July 20, 2010 at 3:09 pm

We got some shots of this while up attending the Dayton Amateur Radio Convention. They’re on Cinematour.

rivest266
rivest266 on January 17, 2014 at 6:25 am

This theatre has the same design as the Valley Circle theatre in San Diego.

MovieMad52
MovieMad52 on April 5, 2014 at 7:40 pm

The comment from Terrybear was incorrect about CABARET playing at the Northwest Plaza. Allied Artists made a circuit wide deal with National General after it had secured a date with the McCook Theatre. The owners of the McCook sued and the date was restored to the McCook.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 10, 2014 at 12:22 am

rivest266 is right. The Cinema North bears a striking resemblance to the Valley Circle Theatre in San Diego, California. It looks as though National General used the same plans, by Beverly Hills architect Harold Levitt, for both theaters. I recall seeing a photo of another almost identical theater (somewhere in Missouri, I think) but I can’t recall the name of it.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 10, 2014 at 1:27 am

I remember now that the other theater of this design was the Mark Twain Theatre in Sunset Hills, Missouri. Boxoffice attributes that design to Harold W. Levitt, Ernest W. LeDuc, and William H. Farwell, all of Los Angeles. LeDuc and Farwell were members of the firm of Harold W. Levitt & Associates.

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