Center Cinemas

42-17 Queens Boulevard,
Sunnyside, NY 11104

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Showing 1 - 25 of 32 comments

robboehm
robboehm on March 18, 2015 at 9:07 am

I think artpf may be thinking about either of the two large theaters in Sunnyside, the Bliss or the Sunnyside, which were in the 2,000 seating range. According to the 1944 FDYB the capacity of the Center was 600.

artpf
artpf on March 17, 2015 at 3:17 pm

This movie theatre CLOSED last month. The landlord is looking for someone to buy the air rights to build a big building on top of this, but says teh restaurant next door will remain. The current movie tenant said he was blind sided by his lease not being renewed.

BTW, the capacity listed above says 750 seats and 6 screens. I know for sure teh original configuration was 2013 seats.. It’s hard to believe they’d go from one screen and 2013 seats to 6 and 750. The rent on this property was around $15K a month! Please correct the header above that says it’s open.

RobertR
RobertR on February 5, 2015 at 12:18 pm

I was wondering why they were letting the marquee fall apart and go dark and leave graffiti all over the building, now I know. With this closing the nearby Jackson 3 might be worth reopening.

DARCYDT
DARCYDT on January 4, 2015 at 2:37 pm

If the theater closes after today as they say the owner rejected a 6 month stay the final pictures to play there are, The Interview, Annie, Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tombs, The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies, Top 5 and Penguins of Madagascar.

fred1
fred1 on December 11, 2014 at 4:44 pm

The owner of the property has granted the theater a reprieve http://www.timesledger.com/stories/2014/50/sunnysidetheater_tl_2014_12_12_q.html

fred1
fred1 on December 10, 2014 at 12:32 pm

The place is a gridhouse . How it lasted is anybody guess.

Metropolite
Metropolite on December 10, 2014 at 7:19 am

The theater will be demolished for Affordable Housing.

http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20141209/sunnyside/bargain-movie-theater-closing-make-room-for-affordable-housing?utm_source=Forest+Hills+%26+Rego+Park&utm_campaign=c6d26a028e-Mailchimp-NYC&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_6c3609dc85-c6d26a028e-132251089

robboehm
robboehm on December 8, 2014 at 10:00 am

I believe these are the people who brought back the Islip. Wonder how that’s going.

Greenpoint
Greenpoint on December 7, 2014 at 10:18 pm

http://sunnysidepost.com/2014/12/07/sunnysides-movie-theater-to-close-next-month/

Greenpoint
Greenpoint on December 7, 2014 at 10:18 pm

January 4th 2015 is the last day for the Center and will break my mother’s heart…

RobertR
RobertR on July 14, 2014 at 10:16 am

Any theatre no matter how much business it does is in danger if the landlord has someone willing to pay more then a theatre can. The Pacific-City Cinemas people DROOL over the money to be made for Cinema 1-2-3 it will happen as soon as the right offer comes along.

mhvbear
mhvbear on March 2, 2014 at 3:10 pm

Doubt very much the Union Square would close. It is probably the only theater complex on the East side that does any significant business.

zoetmb
zoetmb on March 2, 2014 at 2:08 pm

@LuisV: Well, it’s a year later and it’s still there, but almost all theaters are endangered, because from a real-estate perspective, theaters are a lousy business. They’re in use only part of the day, they take up a lot of space, there’s slow turnover, and in the early weeks of a movie (and today there are only early weeks to a movie), the distributor takes 90% of the money. Digital projection or not, theaters have to do a better job than what people can obtain at home, otherwise they’re not going to get any business. NYC has lost 80 screens in the last 13 years.

There are rumors that the Cinema 1,2,3 and the Union Square 14 are next on the chopping block, although those rumors have been around for a while.

fred1
fred1 on February 15, 2013 at 12:21 pm

Always a pleasure to see the Center cinemas while passing it from the 7 train

LuisV
LuisV on February 15, 2013 at 9:24 am

Sunnyside Center Cinemas is likely to be demolished in the coming years, since the Queens Boulevard-facing plot of land on which it sits was sold to an Astoria developer back in December for $6.675 million. The Sunnyside Post reports that the developer hasn’t yet decided what to do with the site—which includes a Dime Savings Bank, set to close this summer, and Irish pub P.J. Horgan’s, which has been operating for 40 years and has a lease till 2018—but guesses that it’s likely to be razed in the name of a presumably more lucrative residential project.

http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2013/02/15/longtime_sunnyside_movie_theater_faces_closure.php#more

bpmckenna
bpmckenna on September 22, 2012 at 2:10 pm

ENDANGERED! The building the theater is housed in is up for sale: http://sunnysidepost.com/2012/09/22/queens-bld-building-up-for-sale-includes-historic-businesses/#comments.

All part of an extremely ill advised rezoning (upzoning) of Queens Boulevard in Sunnyside where the theater is located because various political figures wanted to preserve the residential side streets (but not the small-scale commercial district with many charms of its own).

cmbussmann
cmbussmann on September 18, 2012 at 1:01 pm

If you miss the charms of the classic grindhouse aesthetic of the 70’s & 80’s, this place is for you: dim, cramped interior with sticky floors and broken seats. Projection that continually blurs with an image-ratio that rarely fits the screen (though this may have been solved with them recently going digital). Bathrooms that are straight out of a horror movie and concessions I would never venture to eat. Add in an indifferent staff, sagging marquee, cheap ticket prices, and a quarrelsome audience and you get a recipe for a fun night out — provided you don’t care too much about what you’re seeing there. For films like 28 Weeks Later, Taken, & Resident Evil: Extinction this place is perfect. Seeing Quentin Tarantino & Robert Rodriguez’s Grindhouse double-feature was heaven — I felt like I would walk right out of the theater and into another era. I’ve missed this place since switching from Queens to Brooklyn.

RobertR
RobertR on April 4, 2012 at 10:47 pm

The marquee is falling apart and there is terrible graffiti on the wall above it. I don’t know how the interior is but the outside looks really bad.

llumenick
llumenick on May 28, 2008 at 4:18 pm

Francis Ford Coppola mentions seeing “The Thief of Bagdhad'‘ (1940) and other Alexandra Korda productions, as well as Universal productions including Abbott and Costello movies, in a commentary track for the new Criterion Collection DVD of "Thief of Baghdad.’'

rcdt55b
rcdt55b on January 1, 2007 at 6:29 am

3 theaters upstairs have DTS. The other upstairs theater has Dolby Digital EX. The downstairs theater has analog stereo.

ridethectrain
ridethectrain on December 31, 2006 at 5:28 pm

does anyone know the capacities of each screen and does any have digital sound

Timothyart
Timothyart on August 16, 2006 at 4:53 pm

I have just recently moved to Queens after 20 years in Manhattan. During the 80’s I still was able to go to all of the great declining glory of 42nd street, all the revival houses, the few art-house screens. And of course, I saw them all go. So, I resisted going to the Center for the first 4 months that I lived here. It looked dingy and cheap. But, as a lover of movies, once I settled down in my seat with a little popcorn, I was happy to have the Center around the corner. Dingy and cramped though it may be, the sound is good, the price can’t be beat, and I was glad to learn that Sullivan’s Travels was the first film to play there, that knowledge courtesy of this website. There is a lot to be said for these old places, that were never grand in the first place, that never fell to a wrecking ball or another chain store or flea market.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on May 11, 2006 at 6:04 pm

Here’s a new link to the photo I posted on Sep 6th. The old link no longer works.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on September 6, 2005 at 5:15 pm

Snapped this photo on the way back from Manhattan with my son a few weekends ago…

View link

Also grabbed a shot or two of the former Boulevard Theater on Northern Blvd in Jackson Heights on my way in to the city this same day. The following weekend I decided to take the camera out for a real tour of some cinema sites in Astoria, Sunnyside, Jackson Heights, Flushing and even a stop in Fresh Meadows. I’ll be posting those pics as well in the coming days.