Cinema I & II

5757 Pacific Avenue,
Stockton, CA 95205

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Scott Neff
Scott Neff on May 22, 2014 at 12:04 am

From General Cinema internal documents, they show that they operated a theatre at 5757 Pacific Ave from 12/20/1968 until 03/17/1983.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on September 14, 2013 at 7:25 pm

I believe that the Cinema I & II is the house listed by CinemaTour as the Sherwood Plaza Cinemas, at 5757 Pacific Avenue. The Cinema Theatre was listed at that address with “No. 17” appended in a directory of the period.

It was originally one of the Henry George Greene-designed single-screen houses built by ABC in the late 1960s-early 1970s. According to its entry on the Stockton Theatres page from Wright Realtors, it was twinned in the 1980s.

Both CinemaTour and Wright Realtors have this listed as a General Cinema Corporation house, but I believe they might have conflated it with the Sherwood Theatre, which was a General Cinema house, and which was located in a different shopping center nearby called Sherwood Mall. The confusion over the shopping center names may be why Sherwood Plaza was eventually renamed Stonecreek Village. The name Sherwood Plaza has since been taken over by a small strip mall nearby.

The finding aid to the Interstate Theatre Collection (Interstate was an ABC-Paramount affiliate) at the Dallas Public Library lists a box containing records of feature film receipts from ABC’s theaters from 1960-1969, and there is a listing for the “Sherwood (Stockton, Calif) Aug. 1968 – Nov. 1969.” That must have been this house, and I think we can take August, 1968, as the likely month the house opened.

A complication arises from a plan of Sherwood Plaza from its leasing corporation (PDF here) which shows the theater space and labels it as “General Cinema Theater.” Unfortunately, the plan has no date on it. Perhaps General Cinema did take over the house eventually, but it was still being operated by ABC successor Plitt Theatres in the early 1980s. In fact I’ve come across one reference calling it the Plitt Sherwood Theatre in 1983.

There is a lot of conflation of these two houses on the Internet, but the photos show that they were indeed two different theaters. I wish their operators (and the developers of Stockton’s shopping centers) had shown more imagination in naming their various projects.