Mall Cinema Twin

Vernon Park Mall,
Kinston, NC 28504

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The Mall Cinema was opened as a single screen theatre by Stewart & Everett Theatres in 1969. It was tucked away on the northwest corner of the property behind the Vernon Park Mall. The Mall Cinema quickly became Kinston’s leading movie theatre, eclipsing its sister theatre downtown (the Paramount). The Mall Cinema had the first showing of “Star Wars” in Kinston in 1977, and generally got the biggest hits. The Mall Cinema was twinned in the early-1980’s and sold to Carmike Cinemas in 1986. The Mall Cinema Twin was closed in the late-1990’s; it was last used as a temporary location for a church following Hurricane Floyd.

Contributed by NightHawk1

Recent comments (view all 6 comments)

raysson on November 30, 2011 at 11:47 pm

Not only did “STAR WARS” played here in 1977 during its first-run,but a lot of good movies played here including “TOP GUN”, “E.T.”, “ALIENS”,“TERMINATOR 2”,and “RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK”. For a twin cinema,it did huge business in the town of Kinston and surrounding areas.

raysson on November 30, 2011 at 11:49 pm


1969-1986 Stewart and Everett Theatres
1986-1999 Carmike Cinemas

NightHawk1 on December 1, 2011 at 12:25 am

Raysson, you are correct about both the chains and the films at the Mall Cinema. Who put Cinemark up there? That chain has never been in Eastern North Carolina. S&E built upon its success at Vernon Park Mall by taking over the abandoned Plaza Cinema in 1975 and squeezed out the competing Park Theatre on North Queen Street (I can’t remember if S&E bought that one out or simply drove it out of business). By 1982 the Mall and Plaza Cinemas were Kinston’s only movie houses still in operation.

raysson on December 6, 2011 at 11:46 pm

NightHawk1: There is NO Cinemark operations in Eastern North Carolina. Period. Cinemark owned and operated movie houses in Salisbury,Charlotte,Statesville,and Asheboro. There were NO Cinemark Theatres in the Eastern part of the state. For one,I’m correct about some of the movies that played at the Mall Cinema. I do know this from movies that played here: The original STAR WARS movie and THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK did played at this theatre. So did RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK and E.T.

NightHawk1 on December 7, 2011 at 6:32 am

I saw the original “Star Wars” here in 1977 when it was first released. My family lived in LaGrange at the time and chose to see movies in Kinston rather than Goldsboro. We still lived in LaGrange when “The Empire Stries Back” came out, but for some odd reason we saw it in Greenville rather than in Kinston. The Mall Cinema was a good theatre before it was split in two. It and the Park Theatre on North Queen Street were the best places in Kinston to see movies. I was in elementary school during the 1970s and the Mall Cinema was a significant part of my childhood. Unfortunately I never saw “Raiders” or “E.T.” in a theatre, I wound up seeing those movies on VHS.

NightHawk1 on February 21, 2012 at 4:29 am

Back in the 1970s Stewart & Everett ran X-rated midnight shows at the Mall Cinema; I remember seeing posters for soft-X films displayed alongside those for mainstream features.

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