Westwood Twin Theatre

3440 North First Street,
Abilene, TX 79603

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1977 photo credit Traces Of Texas Facebook page.

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Located on First at Willis just off Highway 355, The Westwood opened on July 28, 1966 as a single screen house seating 800. The Westwood Theatre was twinned in July 1977. It is a very pleasant and well maintained thesatre. It has a large rectangular marquee over a blonde brick building. It is more or less the anchor of the small shopping plaza that it is located in.

The front wise walk is unique in that it is a terazzo and highly polished marble granite lines the lower portion of the front of the building. A large double window box office to the right side of the entrance.

Ther lobby is nice even though it is small. The auditorium are narrow with eight seats on each side of the center aisle. One auditorium is done in a burnt orange and one is done in yellow. The walls are lined with sound draperies in these respective colors. The floors of the auditoriums are sloped for rather good site lines. The sets are comfortable but seem to be the original seats. (No cup holders).

Great sound and all in all a visit to the Westwood Twin is really an enjoyable night out to the movies. It was closed November 15, 2014.

Contributed by Chuck Van Bibber

Recent comments (view all 8 comments)

Steven Rogers
Steven Rogers on April 9, 2005 at 10:07 am

I think the Westwood opened in the early 70’s as a single theater, and was subsequently split. I saw Star Wars there many times (1977). A few of us in the local astronomy club brought telescopes to the theater a few times to show various sky sights to the crowds as they exited from Star Wars. The news even showed up to cover it once.

I’m pretty sure the 1978 opening date is incorrect. I would guess more like 72 or 73. 1978 could be the date when it was split.

JamesEBohenek
JamesEBohenek on October 29, 2006 at 8:31 pm

I can’t tell you when the Westwood opened, but I saw Paper Lion there in October 1968. I saw 2001, A Space Odyssey there and I was very impressed with the magnetic stereo sound system. I still think Hal’s voice was in the surround speakers. Paint Your Wagon was another great magnetic stereo presentation. I was always amazed that Funny Girl, Hello Dolly, Fiddler on the Roof and Ben-Hur weren’t stereo. I believe the theater was part of the Interstate chain as was The Paramount. When the Westwood was twinned the screen was acquired by a Cooper High School teacher to be installed in the school auditorium.

Coate
Coate on May 5, 2009 at 4:05 pm
*the Westwood opened in 1972 and was twinned in 1978.*

It continues to amaze me how much information on this website (and the Internet in general) is just plain wrong!

For the record…Interstate’s Westwood opened on July 28, 1966. The debut feature was “Stagecoach.” The theater was twinned in the summer of 1977. The debut attractions upon becoming the Westwood 1 & 2 on July 1, 1977 were “A Bridge Too Far” and “Star Wars.” Source: Abilene Reporter-News.

rivest266
rivest266 on August 15, 2009 at 11:15 am

You are right, Mr. Coate, ad (with picture of the theatre) at View link

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on September 17, 2011 at 4:35 am

The Dallas Public Library’s Interstate Theatres Collection includes 16 sheets of plans for the Westwood Theatre by architects Bridges, Campbell & Associates, dated March 24, 1966. John M. Bridges, Jr and George F. Campbell, Jr, were the principals of the firm, according to the 1962 AIA Directory.

Scott Neff
Scott Neff on October 9, 2011 at 11:51 am

You mean people saw Star Wars in that teeeeny tiny bowling alley theatre???

http://www.cinematour.com/tour/us/4644.html

malcolmdbc39
malcolmdbc39 on June 27, 2012 at 7:13 pm

The Interstate chain opened the Westwood in 1966 and they closed the Queen downtown at the same time.

malcolmdbc39
malcolmdbc39 on November 19, 2014 at 1:39 pm

The Westwood theater should now be listed as closed and for sale. The movie house opened in 1966, meaning it’s 50th anniversary would just be ahead. At the time it opened, moviegoers could choose from the 4 downtown theaters, (The Metro, The Majestic, The Paramount and The Queen). The Interstate chain closed The Queen down on the day before The Westwood opened. Sonny and Cher came to The Westwood in April 1967 as part of a Texas tour for their movie, “Good Times”. It was twinned in the summer of 1977. In the last several years it became a bargain cinema. You could get in for less than $2.00 and get a large bucket of popcorn for $5.00 with a free refill. True the seats were falling apart and the sound and projector broke down a lot, but it made for a cheap date. Later in 1969, National General Cinema built a theater in the Westgate shopping mall. Shortly after that, The Radford Hills 3 was built and a Jerry Lewis Cinema, causing a glut of theaters for a town the size of Abilene. The Westwood officially closed November 15, 2014. I attended the Westwood most of its theater life and am saddened to see the old girl go. Hopefully someone will invest in it and give it a new life.

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