Regal Cinemas Riverfront Twin

155 S. River Street,
Santa Cruz, CA 95060

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Regal Cinemas Riverfront Twin

Opened as the UA I & II on July 10, 1970, this once boasted one of the largest indoor movie theatre screens in Santa Cruz County. The main house, which once sat over 500 patrons, had 70mm capabilities, although it never once played any 70mm films, but still managed to grab more than its fair share of blockbuster movies in the mid-1980’s through early-1990’s, including “Gremlins”, “Aliens”, “The Fly” and “Total Recall”. The second auditorium, which shared a spacious lobby with the main house but used its own side of the snack bar, sat around 250. The projection throw was approximately the same as the main house, but was not quite as wide.

The Riverfront Twin was operated by Signature Theatres after United Artists exited the Santa Cruz market in the late-1990’s. Regal Theatres (who had purchased UATC in the meantime) purchased Signature Theatres in 2004. It often gets the second-tier movies that Regal does not book in to its nine-screen theatre a few blocks to the West. It was closed in early-July 2018.

Contributed by Edward Havens

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

rivest266
rivest266 on July 26, 2015 at 11:16 am

July 10th, 1970 grand opening ad as UA Cinema I & II in photo section.

terrywade
terrywade on July 15, 2018 at 11:46 am

This nice Santa Cruz cinema after 48 years has closed this past week. I am not surprised that Regal/UA did not to renew the lease as the main problem over the years was that the marquee was set way in the back River ST area near the main entrance. Most of the foot and car traffic is on the Front ST side of the theatre. Regal only played their not so hot first run films here and It did not even advertise what was playing. Lets hope this solid clean building with two semi large seating areas will not become a rock music club. You won’t hear sound leakage here like the newer Regal 9 down the street. Time for Drafthouse Cinemas or another movie company to take It over and show movies or live events that Regal and Landmark won’t play to this rich college/tourist area. No need to put in boring recliners and loose seating, keep it large. Bring in Dolby AtmosĀ® or another hi end sound system with curved screen and curtains. No Imax yet in Santa Cruz. Time for showmanship to return to this surf city Santa Cruz CA. Move the marquee so people can see It and offer entertainment events with movies for this hot movie starved college town.

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