What city needs a cinema?

posted by shanadavid on March 21, 2010 at 9:45 am

I’ll just throw this question out there:

Can you think of a city, preferably in the Northeast, that makes you shake your head and say, “Why can’t I ever see a smaller movie in this town?” A burg that you think is just dying for a well run cinema drafthouse?

An empty movie theater in good shape is by no means a prerequisite, we’re prepared to renovate a grocery store if necessary. Having just opened a twin arthouse in a Midwest town of 80,000 we’re open to ideas, but want to move closer to family in NY.

Comments (9)

Roger Katz
Roger Katz on March 21, 2010 at 10:46 am

Just about any city in Connecticut could use a cinema drafthouse. The only towns in CT with cinemas with dining are Canaan and Winsted which are both in the rural northwest corner. New Britain is probably the largest city in Connecticut with no movie theatre of its own.

moviebuff82 on March 21, 2010 at 11:05 am

Many years ago, New Jersey used to have a cinema for every town. Nowadays, it’s the megaplexes that are eating up the small fry. Maybe a drafthouse cinema might come to NJ.

dennisczimmerman on March 24, 2010 at 1:34 pm

Here I go again. I am a resident of Lancaster, PA. It is about 60 miles West of Philadelphia. There is a small town in Lancaster County called Mt. Joy. It is located about midway between Lancaster City and Harrisburg, PA – which is the state capital. There is a theatre in Mt. Joy which used to be called the Joy Theatre. It has not been used since the early 1960’s. However, the building that houses the theatre has been maintained. The building has a “pizza/sandwich” shop and apartments included as well. The owner of the pizza place owns the entire building which he has put on the market. The lobby of the theatre now houses a real estate office. The theatre itself is only missing the seats. I have pictures I took when I toured the theatre for another interested party about two years ago. Stacy Rutherford is the manager of the Main Street Mount Joy organization that is helping to get the theatre reopened. Her phone number is 717-6534227 and email is I think still is still in that position. There is another theatre in Marietta, PA which is currently being restored by the Marietta Historical Preservation Group. Both of these theatres are listed on Cinema Treasurs. Fact is they are exterior pictures on both threads as well. Although they are located in small towns, there is quite a population to draw from. This area has no cinema drafthouse. If I can be of any other assistance please contact me – As I said I have some pictures of the interior of the Joy Theatre, although the lighting was not the greatest when I took the pictures. Hope you find what you are looking for.

dennisczimmerman on March 24, 2010 at 9:43 pm

The Joy Theatre closed in February of 1965 and has never been used since other than for storage by the owner of the building. However, as I said in my previous comment, the building has been maintained. Even the portals are there for the projection room, but the projectors are long since gone.

iccinemas on April 10, 2010 at 8:30 am

Available: 3 screens, 1st run, 900 seats, operational in mid Mi. 5 acres splitable commercial prop with highway access on 2 sides.

stefanee on April 10, 2010 at 8:50 am


I am new to this website and the conversations are very interesting. I live in Jonesboro, AR BUT I grew up near West Helena/Helena, AR.

As you may (or may not know) Helena is in the"deep" Delta with much history of culture, Home of the Blues, etc. There is NO CTIVE MOVIE THEATER. There used to be a twin cinema, but the previous manager made very bad decisions, and the theater closed.

I am really really interested in re-opening the theater. I have been in the building numerous times in the last3 years (it’s been closed since the early 1990s). I have obtained measurements, etc.

This is the first website that I have encountered that may have individuals that may have actual knowledge of what they are talking about.

Please give me advise/knowledge on where I can obtain financing/help on re-opening the theater. It is in such a great location in West Helena and it is very wanted in the community. PLEASE HELP ME!

hhspangler on April 16, 2010 at 11:18 am

Hi, I live in York, PA which is about 45 min to an hour north of Baltimore and 45 minutes south of the state capital, Harrisburg.

Just saw in today’s paper that the Dallastown Theater is for sale. Up until six months or so ago, they showed movies there. So, it’s all in working order.

The public sale is Wednesday, April 28 at 5 PM. The auctioneer is Gary Gladfelter 717-854-7358

“1928 beautiful old style one screen movie theatre contained within a brick structure having a/c and gas heat. Offered as a complete unit including real esate and contents. If not sold as a complete unit contents will be sold just after offering of complete turnkey unit.
10% down day of sale, balance 45 days for settlement. Open house April 18 2 – 4 PM. Call for appt 717-469-4025
35mm Christie projector, 35 mm platter system, antique popcorn m/c, newer ice maker, antique spotlight, antique projector housing (1920’s,) antique lighting fixtures, movie screen, 311 plush movie seats.”

Good Luck!

Dramatrauma on May 5, 2010 at 5:44 pm

Any luck stefanee or Shana-D?

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