UA Forest Hills Twin Theatre

107-16 Continental Avenue,
Forest Hills, NY 11375

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UA Forest Hills Twin Theatre

Opened on February 5, 1922, the large Forest Hills Theatre is located around the corner from the more famous (and still operating) Midway Theatre in the Queens, New York neighborhood of Forest Hills. It was remodeled in 1937. It was renovated in 1961 to the plans of architect John J. McNamara. It was twinned in the 1970’s.

After seven decades of showing movies, the theatre was sold, along with the Midway Theatre, by United Artists to a local developer in 1998.

On August 28, 1999, the Duane Reade opened, with the theatre’s façade restored. The original building beyond the façade was demolished for construction of the Duane Reade drugstore. In July 2015 a Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant opened in the upper section of the front of the building. The closed down on October 31, 2020.

The project was given a local design award – ostensibly for the meticulously preserved exterior. The interior, however, is now part of Forest Hills' history.

Recent comments (view all 53 comments)

Bway
Bway on April 6, 2009 at 9:24 am

Does the lobby part of the building exist, or just the exterior facade?

NativeForestHiller
NativeForestHiller on January 13, 2010 at 3:43 am

Hi Everyone! This is my Forest Hills Theatre flickr photoset, courtesy of Rego-Forest Preservation Council, which I founded and chair:

View link

You can click the thumbnails to enlarge the photos, and view them in a low, medium, high resolution, or original (maximum) resolution, as well as download them for future reference.

If anyone can contribute any vintage photos or ads to this photoset, I will be happy to give you credit. All images help preserve the spirit of the former Forest Hills Theatre, and may contribute to other great preservation projects. Let’s be proactive!

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on August 3, 2011 at 8:34 pm

This photo of the Forest Hills is dated 1940, which the titles on the marquee bear out. Thanks to Tinseltoes, who introduced me to this website (for The New York City Organ Project) by linking out to pictures on other theater pages.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on August 10, 2011 at 3:42 pm

Thanks for posting, kurt. I remember seeing Radio Days here during your time as manager. A few years earlier, I did see a more conventional (and sort of goofy) fantasy/adventure flick here called The Beastmaster. Last movie I caught here was Trainspotting, upstairs in the summer of 1996. I miss this theater. Enjoyed watching films in both auditoriums, but really liked the raked seating of the balcony room.

paktype
paktype on June 25, 2012 at 5:00 pm

I saw Blade Runner here in 1982. The biggest problem with this theater, as with the Midway, was parking.

Metropolite
Metropolite on July 8, 2013 at 4:56 pm

DNAInfo.com is reporting …

Buffalo Wild Wings, the popular barbecue chain, is slated to open a massive location at the former Forest Hills Theatre soon.

The new location, at 107-16 71st Ave. — between Austin Street and Queens Boulevard — will measure around 10,000 square feet, which is about 40 percent larger than a typical Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant, said James Bitzonis, president of Four M Capital, LLC, the group launching the restaurant.

The restaurant will not interfere with the building’s classic features, Bitzonis said, and it “will pay homage to the theater and Forest Hills” by displaying memorabilia, including photos and jerseys representing local sports teams.

The company is in the process of receiving a number of historical photos showing the building and the neighborhood. “We are enlarging them and framing them,” he said.

Overall, there will be about 100 pieces of memorabilia displayed at the restaurant.

The scheduled opening is July 15.

Bway
Bway on July 10, 2013 at 12:43 pm

I think only the facade remains? Wasn’t the entire theater destroyed and the building rebuilt?
Was even the lobby retained?

Comfortably Cool
Comfortably Cool on May 7, 2019 at 8:57 am

The Forest Hills had a prior modernization in 1937, when it was closed for the entire summer. Photo of gala re-opening ceremonies and new marquee can be viewed here

Greenpoint
Greenpoint on October 27, 2020 at 12:34 pm

I was in the Buffalo Wild Wings. They are ceasing operations at that location this week. They cancelled their lease.

ridethectrain
ridethectrain on October 29, 2020 at 12:06 am

Please correct, it was a twin theatre. The balcony was theatre 2 and the orchestra was theatre 1 with Dolby. Don’t know when UA twin the theatre, it was probaly in the 1970’s When closed it was the UA Forest Hills Twin

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