Lafayette Square Cinema

4220 W. 38th Street,
Indianapolis, IN 46254

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: General Cinema Theatres

Architects: William C. Riseman

Previous Names: Lafayette Cinema II, III, IV., Lafayette Square Cinema III, IV, V

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This three screen General Cinema opened on November 5, 1976 as the Lafayette Square Cinema II, III, IV. The architect was William Riseman. Seating was listed at 950. In 1977 it was renamed Lafayette Square Cinema III, IV, V. The Lafayette Square Cinema was closed on October 18, 2000.

Contributed by Chris1982

Recent comments (view all 2 comments)

rivest266 on October 31, 2015 at 4:37 pm

This opened as Lafayette Square Cinemas II-III-IV on November 5th, 1976 at 4220 W. 38th St. according to the grand opening ad in the photo section. Castleton also added 3 more screens on the same day.

dallasmovietheaters on December 7, 2021 at 6:21 am

Edward J. DeBartolo Sr. launched the Lafayette Square Mall in 1968. The first theatre there was an original tenant and was an interior 925-seat single-screen operation for General Cinema Corp. (GCC) as the Lafayette Square Cinema. Due to the success of both the mall and the cinema, GCC would add this exterior outparcel triplex - the Lafayette Square II-III-IV - on November 5th, 1976 in the southeast corner of the mall at 4220 West 38th Street.

The interior screen facility was duplexed in 1977. The interior venue was renamed as the GCC Lafayette Square I & II. Since “II” was already in the use, the interior’s new name caused the exterior facility to be renamed as the GCC Lafayette Square III-IV-V. Confused customers arriving at the wrong “II” were simply directed inside or outside. Modern megaplexes challenged GCC’s aging duplexes, triplexes and 6- and 8-screen multiplexes in the mid-1990s but these two venues held their own.

The interior I-II finally closed at the end of a 30-year lease on May 26, 1998. The exterior was renamed one final time carrying on as the Lafayette Square Cinema (Roman numerals redacted) until closure on October 18, 2000 when General Cinema was in free fall economic collapse and closing its older multiplexes all over the country.

The naming of the theaters here is a bit of an oddity in that the opening name of the original interior theatre became the closing name of the exterior. Had they simply renamed the exterior as the GCC Lafayette Square I-II-III, it would have held the distinction of the circuit’s only theatre in its history to hold the names of the xx I-II-III, II-III-IV, and III-IV-V. Somebody missed a bet!

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