IDS Center Theatre

80 S. 8th Street,
Minneapolis, MN 55402

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A small cinema located in the basement of the IDS building, Minnesota’s tallest skyscaper. It was short lived, lasting only from 1972 to 1976.

Contributed by Kirk J. Besse

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

tjo2
tjo2 on May 10, 2011 at 3:39 am

It was operated by the Hopkins, MN based Engler Theaters chain. It opened up as a revival house, showing MGM and WB musicals and dramas from the 40’s and 50’s. They later changed the format to arthouse pictures with “The Mad Adventures of Rabbi Jacob” and “The Best of Your Show of Shows”. When the cinema was closed and demolished, the red seats from the IDS Center theater were installed in the new St. Anthony Main 5-plex cinema, one mile away. I was there three weeks ago and the red seats from the theater as still in two of the auditoriums there.

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on May 10, 2011 at 4:22 pm

PLEASE CHANGE NAME TO:

IDS CENTER CINEMA

PLEASE CHANGE ADDRESS TO:

80 S. 8TH STREET

80 S. 80th Street is at American Blvd W & Morgan Cir S, about 8 miles South of the correct location.

The theater was located in the shopping area of the IDS Building, what is in that area now?

More info and photos are always welcome.

AT2

CJ1949
CJ1949 on September 18, 2012 at 9:03 am

It was called the “IDS Center Theatre” more often than anything else. It was in business 1972 to 1976. These are the correct dates.

Engler was the 2nd and last operator of the theatre. It was started by a partnership called Movieland, Inc. which ran the theatre for about 13 months. Engler took it over in December 1973 and got the first run of “The Laughing Policeman” (Fox) as its Christmas picture.

It was not a repertory theatre. There were a handful of showings, over its four-year life, where it played some W. C. Fields and Marx Brothers, but during that period many theatres would do that. There were some midnight shows promoted with radio stations however. There were a lot of “repeats” of pictures that were a few years old.

The IDS Theatre could never get any product. The operators were desperate to have anything on the screen. The other failing of the theatre is that the public could not find it. It was below street level – you had to take an escalator down. There was no marquee or signage on the street. You just had to know where it was. When the theatre closed, it was converted to conference and banquet rooms.

Capacity was 384 and ran hour reels.

Interesting that the seats from the IDS were put into St Anthony Main. That was Engler too, but there is a 9-year gap between the closing of the IDS in 1976 and opening of St Anthony Main 5 in 1985. Engler got out of that one after two years and UA Theatres took it over. The IDS seats were in storage for nine years?

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