Gala Twin Cinemas
8546 Bird Road,
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Previous Names: Teatros Cuba, Teatro Miami Twin Cinemas
The Gala Twin Cinemas opened on November 17, 1972 with with “Goldie Hawn in "Butterflies are Free” in screen 1 and John Mills in “Swiss Family Robinson” & Walt Disney’s “101 Dalmations” in screen 2. It played Linda Lovelace in “Deep Throat” in both screens from March 2, 1973 and was an adult movie house for quite a while. In 1981-1982 it became a live theatre named Teatros Cuba. In 1982 to 1984 it became Teatro Miami Twin Cinemas. It was closed on August 30, 1989. It was converted into a gymnasium. It now operates as a church.
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The Gala Twin opened in 1972 as a subrun house but quickly switched to porn when it stumbled onto DEEP THROAT which had recently been banned from Miami Beach’s Sheridan. Located in an incorporated part of Dade County, no city official had the jurisdiction to shut the Gala down.
This operated again in 1983-84 as the Miami Twin with Spanish language and subtitled films.
I worked here from 1978-1980. I remember long lines for The Deer Hunter, Apocalypse Now, American Gigolo, Halloween, Dawn of the Dead and my favorite Breaking Away.
If this theater was in the corner of the L-shaped shopping center it has been a church, Iglesia Internacional de la Gracia de Dios, for several years or more.
The church address matches 8546 Bird Road and to me looks like the only storefront that could have been a cinema. I walked by last night on my way to observe the death of Fidel Castro celebrations along Bird Road by the La Carreta restaurant in front of the shopping center, and remembered the church being there when I last walked by years ago.
The movie theater was located in the corner of the strip mall behind La Carreta on Bird Road. The is a Medical device store there…Quirantes…at the end of the mall. Well the movie theater was right past (to the right) of Quirantes. It actually was located where the mall connected “the L shape corner.” I remember going there in 79 and 80 to watch the Deer Hunter, right after it won the Oscar for best picture, and saw the Horror pic there..Phantasm in 1980. I never went to it again, cause newer and bigger theaters were opening up around town.
The Gala Twin theatre opened on November 17th, 1972. Grand opening ad posted.
Deep Throat engagement started on both of its screens on March 2nd, 1973.
According to the local paper, this venue was built and briefly launched as a Jerry Lewis Cinema promising family films. A change of ownership as the Gala Twin and controversy with the showing of “Deep Throat” drove traffic to the Gala for years. As the neighborhood’s population shifted, the cinema became Teatros Cuba for a brief period in 1981/2. It then was rebranded as Teatro Miami Twin (advertised as the Miami Twin Cinema 1982-1984 in English-speaking newspapers) from 1982 until end of lease August 30, 1989. The space was retrofitted as a gym.
I don’t think this was ever a Jerry Lewis Cinema. The nearby Astor and Miller Road were.
As Teatro Cuba it only presented live shows according to El Nuevo Herald.