Parkway Twin

8600 Ward Parkway,
Kansas City, MO 64114

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Showing 6 comments

rivest266 on July 30, 2015 at 12:32 pm

July 12th, 1963 grand opening ad in photo section.

swdailey on March 12, 2013 at 10:44 am

What’s funny is that the current mall’s owners, RED Development, boast of this being the first multiplex “with its original two screens (since renovated and expanded to 14 screens)”. Uh, that original twin theater closed in 1978 and the current multiplex didn’t open until 1992 – in a different area of the mall. It’s close to the original location, but there is no connection. Makes for a good PR spin though I guess.

christofermeissner on March 28, 2009 at 12:24 am

AlAlvarez: you are right that there were other twin theatres before the Parkway, and that Cinema I-II in Manhattan predated it (and was likely the actual first twin theatre). General Cinema had a few twin theatres opened by mid-1963, with a few more on the drawing boards (or under construction). I think the legend that this was the first twin theatre is something that has been propagated by AMC in its attempt to grab all the credit for “inventing” the multiplex theatre. The more accurate landmark for the Parkway is that is was probably the first twin theatre to be opened that was located inside an enclosed mall—as opposed to being a free-standing building near or attached to a mall or shopping center.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on January 7, 2009 at 9:35 pm

Scott, the Cinema 1 & 2 was purpose built almost a year earlier.

Scott Neff
Scott Neff on January 7, 2009 at 8:19 pm

Often the distinction people make about the “first” twin theatre was that it was BUILT as a twin theatre. It wasn’t a single that was turned into a twin as I imagine the Cinema 1 & 2 was in Manhattan.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on January 7, 2009 at 8:05 pm

Although numerous books repeat the Durwood mantra that this was the first ever twin theatre with a common box office and common concession stand, there were others around the country in existence when this opened. In fact, even the high profile Cinema 1 & 2 in Manhattan had opened the year before.