Bijou Cinema

110 Front Street,
Worcester, MA 01608

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MrDJDude
MrDJDude on October 21, 2014 at 9:17 am

As of 10/21/2014, this cinema is a pile of rubble, as the CityScape project is finally moving forward and the section of the old Fashion Outlets it was housed in has been razed. Please update the listing accordingly – thanks!

sat123
sat123 on March 16, 2012 at 3:17 pm

The theatre was located on Foster Street (not Front Street) on the lower level of the former Worcester Center Galleria shopping complex. It was initially operated by General Cinemas and offered first-run films. (I can remember seeing more than my share of Disney films here when I was growing-up) For a time in the mid-to-late 1980s they started adding foreign and what we’d now call “independent” films on one of the screens before General Cinemas called it quits.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 17, 2009 at 4:00 am

The Bijou appears to be a shopping mall theater, opened in 1973 according to the post on 11/30/74. It doesn’t fit.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 17, 2009 at 3:35 am

Was there another Family Theater in Worcester? This was in Boxoffice magazine in January 1960:

WORCESTER, MASS.-The E.M. Loew circuit, operator of the Family Theater here for many years, has placed a “For Rent or For Sale” sign on the marquee. The house has been shuttered since last spring. The circuit continues to run the Plymouth, a first run, here.

jeanneclaire
jeanneclaire on January 11, 2008 at 9:25 am

I had just moved to the Worcester area in 1978, when it was the Worcester Center Cinema. I remember walking the mall, then going to see a movie afterwards. We used to joke about the size of the screens :–)
If I remember correctly, didn’t they used to show plays there too?

strawberry
strawberry on April 5, 2006 at 2:53 am

Although it sounds like this isn’t the same theater, there was another theater called the Bijou in Worcester. It played silent films in 1912. Later the building was turned into a five-and-dime store. It sounds like the old Bijou was located at Eighth and Millbury Street.

for more information, there’s a 1978 audio interview (with transcript) with one of the owners at
http://historymatters.gmu.edu/d/102

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on August 26, 2005 at 3:20 pm

In July of 1984, when this was the Galleria, I saw Electric Dreams. The last films I saw here were Zelary, a very long Czech film, and the director’s cut of Donnie Darko on November 6, 2004, shortly before the place closed.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on April 1, 2005 at 1:39 am

Here’s a photo of the Bijou marquee and entrance area taken a while back.
View link

David Wodeyla
David Wodeyla on December 1, 2004 at 3:37 am

This Cinema was originally the Worcester Center Cinema, opened by General Cinema around 1973. the three auditoriums had a total of only about 700 seats. Actually, the lobby was larger than the three screens combined. It was my first theatre as Manager, from June 1975 until November 1975. It was a busy summer, with Benji and Pete’s Dragon amoung the films shown that summer. October of that year was a distraction from the movies, as the Red Sox were in the World Series.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on November 24, 2004 at 9:48 pm

The Bijou Cinema has closed as of Saturday, November 20, 2004. For the reasons see their website http://bijoucinema.org/ Among the last films shown, appropriately, was a revival of “The Last Picture Show.” No admission was charged.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on March 26, 2004 at 7:30 pm

As I response to an email I sent the Bijou regarding the above concern of mine, I received this response:

Mr. DeLuca,

Since becoming a nonprofit and with the resultant management change we have made many changes. I understand the importance of having the correct equipment and we purchased a 1:33 aspect ratio lens several months ago. Recent films shown at the Bijou including Modern Times and The Animation Show have all used the lens, as did The Boy with the Green Hair. This film was the children’s matinee title for the past two Saturdays and has finished its run. The new matinee film for the next two Saturdays is The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm.

I hope this puts your concerns to rest, that we have dealt with the matter accordingly.

Sincerely,

Cynthia Newton
General Manager
Bijou Community Cinema
Phone/fax 508-757-5311
www.bijoucinema.org

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on March 26, 2004 at 3:13 pm

Last year at the Bijou I had a very bad experience with the post-war German film series. The projectionist had to choose between cutting off heads or cutting off subtitles. So he cut off heads. I went into the projection booth to speak to him. He understood the problem but said he could do nothing about it because the theatre did not own the correct lenses or aperture plates for a proper screening. I asked for a refund and left. This is an extremely important issue…showing the image as it was meant to be seen, not arbitrarily cropped. The theatre would have trouble showing the current “My Architect” properly as well, because that is also a 1:1.33 Academy ratio film.