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Architectural plans were drawn in 1963 by famed theater architect Robert E. Collins for the Florida State Theatres circuit. A 1963 picture of Florida State Theatre executive Harry Botwick shows him holding the Collins' drawings.
Architectural plans were drawn in 1964 by famed theater architect Robert E. Collins for the Florida State Theatres circuit.
Robert E. Collins, architect
This was one of the last theaters, if not the last, designed by famed architect Robert E. Collins.
Samuel M. Puder of South Miami was the architect of the original Loew’s 167th project (sketch in photos.) The mural work and interior design were Rochester-based Patrick Casey and Joseph Schuler. It opened as the circuit’s 114th theater.
In 1985, Gen-Star took on the venue under the name of Gen-Star’s 167th Twin Theatre. Gen-Star also operated the Kendall, and Bay Harbor at that time. In February of 1986, Wometco took on the venue as its final operator under the name of Wometco’s 167th Twin Theatre. It closed with that name on September 7, 1990 with “Air America” and “Pump Up the Volume.” The theatre was said to have been demolished in 1992 for a new-build Pep Boys garage.
The Skylake Twin Cinema closed February 13, 1997 as a sub-run discount house with “Set it Off” and “Daylight” on Screen I and “Space Jam” and “Jingle All the Way” on Screen II. At that point, the mall had 48 vacancies in its 71 storefronts and the cinema was able to opt out of its lease early at the 15-year mark.
It may well be but the local paper reports that the Valentine’s 1982 incident occurred at the Plitt Sunny Isles Twin Theatre and that the movie the man and his wife were on their way to attending did play at the Sunny Isles Twin on Valentine’s Day, 1982. The jury award payout occurred in June of 1986.
In 1978, Henry Plitt formed Plitt Theatre Holdings with some partners to buy ABC`s Southern Circuit of theaters includng ABC’s Florida State Theatres for $49 million including the Southern Isles Twin. Plitt operated the venue from December of 1978 until closure on February 2, 1984 as as Plitt’s Sunny Isles Twin.
It reopened as an independent as the Sunny Isles Twin the next day. It closed on March 4, 1984 with “Boarding School” and “Angelo, My Love” placing a “Closed for Remodeling: Returning on May 3d.” But the venue thought better of the plan making the March 4th closure permanent. Following its conversion to retail operationes, the Sunny Isles Twin theatre was in the news one last time in 1986 as Plitt lost a $1 million lawsuit for a 1982 injury incident in its parking lot.
The Holiday Theatre closed at the end of its 20-year leasing period on July 5, 1990 with “The Hunt for Red October” splitting the single-screener with “Miami Blues.”
The Intracoastal Mall on the waterfront of North Miami Beach opened in 1987 with discount clothing chains T.J. Maxx and Marshall’s, grocer Winn-Dixie, and a General Cinema multiplex theater as its anchors. Restaurants included Shooters and a Ruth Chris Steak House. The General Cinema Intracoastal 8 launched with “Orphans,” “Deadline,” “Killing Time,” “When You Were Here,” “Dirty Dancing,” “Someone to Watch Over Me,” and “The Sicilian” on October 23, 1987.
Ten years later, General Cinema was watching aggressive building of new destination theatre complexes in the “megaplex era” devour aging 6-8 screen multiplexes. Unfortunately for the circuit, they held a huge portfolio of such multiplexes and they witnessed their death in slow motion. GCC’s Intracoastal was the very definition of an aging and uncomfortable multiplex. The circuit closed all eleven of its remaining Florida locations on “(GCC) Black Friday” September 29, 2000 along with 13 others (five in Atlanta, three in New Orleans, as well as Seattle, Albuquerque, Houston, Raleigh and Columbus, Ohio).
On May 4, 2001, the venue was reopened as the Sunrise Intracoastal Cinemas 8. The venue featured independent films, international films, and hosted events including a question and answer with the director of “Play the Game” in 2009. Sunrise moved on in November of 2011. That same month, it was taken over as the Intracoastal Cinemas 8 operated by Frank Theatres. Frank also moved on as the theatre staggered, by all reviews, toward its April 27, 2014 closure in need of repairs and air fresheners.
The theatre received a much-needed transformation in 2014 when Boca Raton-based iPic Theatres completely gutted the existing space and created a premium dining/bar/theatre experience with seating drastically reduced to just 50 to 90 seats per the eight auditoriums. The iPic North Miami Beach launched (deciding not to include “Intracoastal” for reasons unknown) on November 10, 2017. As the retail portion of the Intracoastal Mall staggered, an ambitious master plan was announced for the Mall that would turn it into a mixed used facility. The iPic North Miami Beach continued to operate as the plan was under consideration.
The Meyerland three-plex was a profitable venue during General Cinema’s halcyon days of twins, tris, quads, and assorted other multiplexes. The GCC Meyerland Plaza reached its 30-year leasing with aplomb serving legions of customers. Its genesis is within the original Meyerland Plaza Mall Shopping Center that had opened theatre-less on October 31, 1957 with a Meyer’s and a Henke & Pillot as anchors followed by a Woolworth’s. As a portent of both good and bad times to come, the Plaza would add retailing chains including Service Merchandise, Venture, Borders Books, Palais Royal and - on a nearby outparcel - Kmart. All of these players, of course, were ingredients for retail highs and incredible lows as each would race toward obsolescence.
As for its theatrical chain, in 1964 the Meyerland Plaza Mall had added an annex and announced that General Cinema Corporation would build one of its three, twin-screen theatres in the Houston area. They were placed within Northline Shopping City, Gulfgate Shopping Center, and the Meyerland Plaza Mall. Now one might ask why the Meyerland Plaza Mall Shopping Center didn’t just do as many other warm-climate open air shopping centers had done prior to it and enclose the “mall.” Sadly, the second floor of the Meyerland was an innovative transportation portal allowing trucks to make deliveries on upper, “unseen” floors allowing for more efficient usage of ground floors. So, the open-air Meyerland Plaza Mall Shopping Center was never enclosed.
The General Cinema Meyerland Plaza Cinema I & II launched April 14, 1965 with “Mister Moses” with Robert Mitchum and Carroll Baker. Mitchum would make the trek to all three new Houston twins in support of the film. The Meyerland venue would become a triplex remaining profitable. But the Meyerland Plaza Mall would go into free fall as 20-, 25-, and 30-year leases reached expiry. The Plaza saw a major exodus of retailers in the 1980s as it reached “greyscale” status, a term akin to a dead mall featuring a completely desolate open air center courtyard. The yard’s trees had reportedly matured without enough care - a symbol of neglect for the Meyerland.
The 1980s / 1990s story of the Mall was very much a cautionary tale of that period for Houston. The Plaza had been owned by a single entity but then became a labyrinth when the property was divided up amongst several major players in the early 1980s. It all seemed to be an exercise in futility with the center in freefall, an economic downturn due to issues and unemployment within the oil industry, and a savings and loan crisis. The Plaza’s players couldn’t make their payments and Meyerland next ended up in the hand of two financial institutions on default: Continental Savings and Loan and Lamar Savings. Perhaps fortuitously, during the savings and loan meltdown, both of these entities were dissolved as insolvent. The bad news was that the center languished terribly with no upgrades and lots of deterioration over a seven-year stretch.
GCC was likely in the best shape of the occupants (along with the center’s booming video game arcade) as the theater was still booking good films and drawing crowds. General Cinema was undoubtedly going to opt out at its 30-year expiry in 1995 so likely just wanted to wring each dollar it could at the dying plaza. That plan changed in 1993. A single entity, Wulfe & Co., was able to untangle to labyrinthian ownership, liens and assorted legal issues plaguing the Meyerland. Architects Hermes & Reed along with Ray Bailey would take the Meyerland Plaza back to relevancy in 1994. In that stunning redevelopment would be the razing of the GCC Meyerland Plaza I, II, III which would be replaced by an 8-screen General Cinema’s multiplex. The three-plex closed January 15, 1995 with demolition occurring soon thereafter.
The replacement 8-screen GCC Meyerland 8 has its own CinemaTreasure listing. And the regional retail Meyerland Plaza would become relevant once more. But - spoiler - the new theater doesn’t have a happy ending as GCC should have gone much bigger there and everywhere else failing to adapt to the multiplex world of the mid-1990s. The new facility would be operated by three circuits before being demolished all within ten years.
The Deerfield appears to have operated fairly consistently for its first 25 years. It had short periods of inactivity between various operators over the years including March of 2011 when it closed after the expiry of a 25-year lease. Two operators appear to have relit the venue thereafter including TFG which closed the Deerfield Cinemas 5 permanently on October 6, 2013. The venue was listed for sale thereafter becoming a house of worship.
The Gold Coast opened March 23, 1956 with a double-feature of “Forever Darling” and “Bad Day at Black Rock.” It was closed with a double-feature on November 26, 1978 with “Jaws II" and “Gray Lady Down.”
Local architects - Vander Ploeg & Associates of Boca Raton - helped design the $1 million cinema as an original anchor of the Schmier & Fuerring Properties' Mission Bay Plaza announced in 1987.
GCC closed here on September 28, 2000.
Wometco announced its 1,000-seat Boca Raton Theatre in 1963 with a groundbreaking and time capsule ceremony November 28, 1963 attended by the Mayor of Boca Raton. The venue had an open house on May 26, 1964 followed by a World Premiere showing of “Flipper’s New Adventure” on May 27, 1964 to open the theatre. Mitzie, the porpoise who played Flipper, was transported from Miami to Boca to attend the premiere as was local Channel 6 personality Chuck Zink in his role as “Popeye Playhouse” emcee Skipper Chuck.
The theatre operated on a 20-year lease. Not long after the half-way point, a plan was drawn up to divide the auditorium into two. As noted above, the venue relaunched as a twin on June 25, 1976 with “The Sailor Who Fell From Grace With The Sea” and Walt Disney’s “Peter Pan” with “The Horse with the Flying Tail.” The venue then closed quietly on August 16, 1984 with “"Revenge of the Nerds” and “The Philadelphia Experiment.”
Shadowood Square Mall was announced in 1981 opening theatre-less in December of 1982. As part of its expansion at the five-year mark, Wometco Theatres announced this project in June of 1987. It launched on November 20, 1987 as the Shadowood 12 Theatre in Boca Raton.
No and I’m afraid its past will soon be forgotten.
The Midway Drive-In launched March 29, 1952 with Robert Ryan in “The Best of the Bad Men” and Dana Andrews in “Sealed Cargo.” Opening ad in photos. It appears to have closed in the 1960s and was later razed. The modern day address is at the confluence of Highway D and US-61 once in Lilbourn and now considered within New Madrid. Two addresses are correct for the former o-zoner: 51 Highway D or 6733 US-61, New Madrid, MO 63869, now site of a car / towing operation.
The theatre was demolished in the 2000s
The Grand Opening ad is in photos for the Morehouse Theatre on December 24, 1939 with “The Wizard of Oz” supported by a comedy short and newsreel.
The Rex Theatre launched March 31, 1935 with “The Ruggles of Red Gap” supported by the short, “In the Spotlight” and a cartoon in downtown Sikeston. The theatre was given a streamline moderne makeover just two years later.
In 1956, the Rex was retrofitted with widescreen projection to present CinemaScope titles. But when the Rex booked an X-rated feature in 1970 in the porno chic era of movie exhibition, public sentiment took a turn for the worse at the 35-year old Rex.
On February 22, 1971, the Rex was shut down with Debbie Osborne in “Tobacco Roody.” The theatre made a brief comeback but appears to have either stopped advertising or closed after the Debbie Osborne X-rated opus, “Cindy and Donna” On April 11, 1971.
This 1935-era movie house is a thrice-named venue that has had a magnificent run. Its original operator, I. Walter Maple had run Bethany’s Elite Theatre in the town’s former Auditorium 1923 to 1929 on a 7-year lease. He then equipped it for sound for the Cozy to remain viable on a new lease. but the Cozy closed permanently when a fire early in the morning of February 2, 1934 destroyed the Auditorium building housing the Cozy.
This led Maple to construct the Roxy, a new-build theatre. Unfortunately for Maple, Lester Robinson and Joe Noll also decided to build a new theatre at the same time seeing an opportunity. Maple took a space in the Knights of Pythian Castle Hall to create the temporary replacement Cozy Theatre to continue his bookings. That theatre became the Cozy-Castle and, finally, Castle Theatre.
In the race to see who could open their theatre first, Maple’s Roxy opened with a political speech on October 3, 1935 by Senator Roscoe C. Patterson. But Robinson/Noll technically won the race when the new Noll Theatre opened with a movie on October 17, 1934. Maple then had the Roxy Theatre’s true theatrical Grand Opening opening with the film, “Wake Up and Dream,” on October 26, 1934. The town had reached its high-water mark of three simultaneous hardtop theatres.
Maple would shutter the Cozy-Castle Theatre turned Castle Theatre permanently on December 15, 1934. Maple cited “bad roads” as the reason for closure instead of too many theaters in the small town. Maple retired in 1938 dying in 1942. But his Roxy Theatre had a long run. It was given a makeover by new operators Mrs. and Mrs. Bill Pollock relaunching as the Royal Theatre. It had a soft launch on July 11, 1969 playing films including “Doctor Dolittle” during this period and an official grand opening on July 27, 1969 with “Finian’s Rainbow.” The Royal Theatre and Restaurant closed in 1977 and was auctioned off. The winning bidder at $19,000 was R.L. Adkins. At some point, it was renamed El Teatro Real and then the BigTime Cinema operating into the 2020s.
The small town of Bethany had a race to see which of its new streamline moderne theaters would open first. Lester Robinson and Joe Noll of the new Noll Theatre was technically crowned the winner by lunching with “Big Hearted Herbert” on October 17, 1934. I.W. Maple of the Castle Theatre was actually able to have his grand opening two weeks earlier with a political address. But Maple’s first showing at his new Roxy was nine days later on October 26, 1934.
The Auditorium Theatre took up about half of the footprint of the replacement Noll Theatre named after Jacob Noll. It was razed for the new venue. Operated by F.F. Chenoweth in the 1960s, the Noll operated seasonally with the Frontier Drive-In. The Noll closed part-year during the summer months. Subsequently, the Noll Theatre closed in the early 1970s and the building was razed.
Grand Opening for the Frontier Drive-In was on July 17, 1953 with Joel McCrea and Barbara Hale in “The Lone Hand” supported by three Warner Bros. cartoons.