2240 Union Street,
No one has favorited this theater yet
Last known as the Mercury Theatre, but probably best remembered as the Rio, this little Union Street theatre opened in 1913 and closed on February 3, 1986. Its first name was the Cory, then Capitol, then Crown, then Rialto, then Union, and, finally on November 20, 1941, Rio.
Strictly a secondary neighborhood hole-in-the-wall operation, it gave nearby residents a place to send the kids on Saturday afternoon, or see a rerun of some older film for one last time. In the late 1950’s it was somewhat remodelled in Asian style and renamed Toho Rio; as such, it became San Francisco’s primary venue for Japanese films, and quite popular.
In 1968, needing a moveover house for their first run Metro two blocks away, the United Artists Theatre Circuit took it over and renamed it Metro II (August 16, 1968); UATC also used it to play off films of lesser importance which did not warrant a run at the larger Metro.
It once again changed hands and became the Rio again on October 20, 1982. On March 11, 1983, it was taken over by John Buckley, former operator of Cento Cedar Cinema (qv) who renamed it the Mercury, with a foreign film policy. It failed to spark, and closed permanently on February 3, 1986. It was torn down in 1990.
Just login to your account and subscribe to this theater