Squire Cinemas

115 Middle Neck Road,
Great Neck, NY 11021

Unfavorite 2 people favorited this theater

Squire Cinemas

The Squire Theater was a small single screen cinema that opened around 1935. It was later converted into a triplex with three shoe-box theaters (2 downstairs, 1 up).

After UA filed for bankruptcy, the Squire Theater sat closed for a couple of months, until being taken over and reopened by Clearview Cinemas. They have since chopped up the auditorium again, and it now functions with 7 small screens.

In June 2013, Bow-Tie Cinemas took over most Clearview locations, including this one. From April 1, 2019 it is operated by an independent operator.

Contributed by SteveSmith

Recent comments (view all 35 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 11, 2013 at 4:48 am

A reminiscence by Anne Meara, who grew up in Great Neck in the 1930s, includes a paragraph in which she mentions going to the Squire Theatre with her mother:

“She loved movies and would take me with her whenever she could. I was thrilled. We would walk down Middleneck Road to the Squire theatre. The Squire Theatre was the Enchanted Wood of Great Neck circa 1935.”
If the Squire was open around 1935, it was probably the proposed house that was announced in the April 11, 1935, issue of The Film Daily:
“DeLuxer for Great Neck

“A 700-seat deluxe house, with adjoining parking space for 250 cars, is to be built in Great Neck, L. I., on a site owned by Pomander Square, Inc. House has been leased to a client of D. Seymour Wolfson, attorney, who is withholding the lessee’s name for the present.”

I’m not familiar with Great Neck, so I don’t know where the parking lot would have been, assuming it was built.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 11, 2013 at 4:50 am

Here is a link to the Anne Meara piece cited in my previous comment.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on December 5, 2014 at 2:41 am

In 1941, the Esquire Theatre company, operators of the Squire Theatre, were involved in an arbitration case with five major film companies and the operators of the rival Playhouse Theatre. Esquire had filed a claim that the 30-day clearance given the Playhouse was unfair. As part of their case they compared the condition of their newer theater with that of the old Playhouse which had grown a bit shabby. An article about the case in the July 19, 1941, issue of Showmen’s Trade Review included this description of the Squire:

“…approach to the theatre is made through a store on Middle Neck Road, 20 feet wide and 80 feet long, which has been subdivided into a series of vestibules and lobbies, and this terminates in an auditorium approximately 70 feet in width by 135 feet in length. The auditorium is divided into two parts, the lower level and the stadium level, the lower level containing approximately 660 seats, and the stadium containing 330 seats.

“After leaving the entrance lobbies, one approaches a large promenade which terminates in a lounge approximately 16 by 30 feet in size, off of which are anterooms, and the toilet facilities for ladies and gentlemen.

“Part of the original lot, which was 90 feet in width, has been devoted, to exit facilities and boiler room and heating and cooling apparatus. The stadium is completely fireproof in construction, as is the projection booth and the adjacent spaces in the projection booth.

“In addition to the adequate lighting facilities throughout the auditorium Acousticon units for hard of hearing have been installed on 20 chairs.”

robboehm on May 19, 2015 at 7:18 pm

Photo with original marquee uploaded.

bmccinemash on November 27, 2015 at 4:19 am

The history of the Squire is a little off, U.A. did not close the theatre because of bankruptcy, they sold the building to a gentleman by the name of Warren Whurtzberger who then renovated the theatre to 7 screens and because of his money problems he sold the 7 plex to Clearview Cinemas in 1996. I know this because I was the Division Manager for Clearview Cinemas for Long Island at the time of the sale and was responsible for bringing the Squire into the fold as well as the Franklin also owned by Whurtzberger, who had overextended himself with loans from Boston Concession in order to by and renovate the Squire

bmccinemash on November 27, 2015 at 4:35 am

The strange thing about the Squire was that U.A. Eastern Theatres offices were on top of the Theatre when I worked for U.A. in the 70’s as a Manager at the U.A. Quartet so I spent a lot of time in the Squire, where at the time Mr. Al Lowey was the Manager of both the Squire and the Playhouse and Hope Masades was his Asst., So when Clearview took it over in 1996 it was like a old homecoming for me. I left Clearview in 2001 a year after Clearview was brought by Cablevision and they changed our operating procedures so I left to buy theatres in Florida and form my ow3n company with 2 partners

ridethectrain on April 1, 2019 at 9:43 pm

The theater was taken over by the former owners of Movieworld Douglaston

DARCYDT on April 12, 2019 at 4:31 pm

The former owners of the defunct Movieworld in Douglaston, NY have taken over the Squire.

robboehm on April 12, 2019 at 8:47 pm

The Squire was a leased property and Bow Tie was not the sole owner. Was just the management of the theater taken over or a purchase made? The original Squire lease only ran until 2020.

wally 75
wally 75 on April 13, 2019 at 3:23 pm

I was what UA called a “City Manager” of the Squire and Playhouse back in 70’s before moving on to the Rivoli N.Y. 1975. The only reason I mention it, was talking to someone about when it snowed on Easter Sunday…and there were lines down the block at both theatre’s. Maybe someone can remember the year and what was playing at the Squire and Playhouse.

You must login before making a comment.

New Comment

Subscribe Want to be emailed when a new comment is posted about this theater?
Just login to your account and subscribe to this theater