201 N. Stanley Avenue,
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Previously operated by: Joy's Theaters Inc.
Previous Names: Eastgate Cinema
The Eastgate Cinema opened June 23, 1965. It was located on N. Stanley Avenue at Betin Street. This theatre originally opened as a 685-seat single screen.
It was twinned in June 1969, and converted into a four-screen cinema in 1985, when the seating capacity was listed at 790. The theatre was owned and operated by Joy Theatres.
In the early-1990’s it became a dollar house, and was closed around 2003. Any further information on this theatre would be appreciated.
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Recent comments (view all 6 comments)
I worked at this theatre for a summer in 1977, I think. Jack Pope was the owner (and partner of Joy’s Theatres). His son Jackie was the manager at that time. I was a ticket taker but learned how to be a projectionist there (barely). I think Andy was one of the projectionists…can’t remember the other guy’s name.
Jack Pope’s grandaughter has a post on Cinema III, which was another Joy’s Theatres property.
The Googlemobile’s camera was not working. Therefore I uploaded an aerial of the cinema.
The above info it totally wrong…in 1985 the big house was turned into 4 smaller houses. It became a dollar house in the early 90’s and close after Silver Cinema bought it about 10 years ago. Jack Pope is my grandfather. He died 1/30/2001. Jackie is my uncle. My grandmother Dorothy(Jackie’s mom) died 1/17/2013. I grew up at Eastgate….
I clearly remember the premiere of Soggy Bottom USA at the Eastgate theater w/ Ben Johnson in ‘81. I wasn’t there but I sat glued to my radio listening to the “remote broadcast” on FM102. I don’t remember if it was “Humble Hunter” or Lorri Clary doing the dj work. I do remember one of the stars (Ben Johnson) was there signing autographs though. Eastgate’s days ended (along w/ alotta other businesses) when Pecanland Mall opened.
The Monroe of the 70’s & 80’s was soo full of rich life & culture. I remember eating a lot of Johnny’s Pizza, watching the fireworks on the levee of the Ouachita river, shopping at Howard Griffin Land O' Toys, Selber Bros., Fiesta Nutrition Center, Orange Juliua, Musicland, the big slat wooden benches in Twin City Mall, Picadilly, Tonga Island, the iron-on Tshirt cart, etc., etc..
I loved life in Monroe.
I stumbled across this site and thought I would add a little info. I worked at Eastgate during high school from 1981 to 1983 starting as a ticket taker with my cheap suit jacket and clip on tie and eventually ending up as assistant manager. Jackie Pope was my daily supervisor with Mr. Pope coming in mostly on Sunday or Monday nights to prepare the new movie ads for the newspaper on the upcoming Fridays. The Pope family also owned or had interest in of course Cinema 3 and the theater in the mall in West Monroe for which I can’t remember the name. Being assistant manager meant I would fill in on occasion at the other theaters if their managers were out. I also had the honor of changing the billboard in the Eastgate Shopping Center parking lot for the new movies starting most every Thursday night after the last movie started for the evening. Rain, cold, ice, wind or whatever the billboard had to be changed with that 10'-0 slick metal ladder at 10 to 11 pm hauled over with Jackie’s old beige Ford truck. Andy and Dale were the main projectionists at Eastgate. Great guys. I was working during that Soggy Bottom USA premiere day. Crazy crowds. The biggest draw in the summer of 1981 was Raiders of the Lost Ark. It started very slow but as people found out about it the crowds started rolling in. Conan the Barbarian with Arnold Schwarznegger was also showing at the same time. Without exaggeration there were times the line was over an eighth mile long on some days. I moved away after college and do remember on a visit back in the late 80’s/early90’s the big main theater being split into four theaters and the second largest theater being split in half with the smallest theater becoming the largest. If I remember correctly, in the original configuration the large middle theater was well over 600 seats, the second theater over 200 seats and the smallest theater around 200 seats. It was quite a crowd on those summer days when we would sell out all three shows 2 to 3 times a day. And back then there were no cash registers for concession stand workers. Calculating purchase totals were done mentally with maybe a pad of paper to calculate large orders. The Popes were great people and it was a valuable learning experience working with them.
Joy Theatres' Joy Houck and Jack Pope opened their new build $300,000 685-seat Eastgate Cinema on June 23, 1965. The one million dollar Eastgate Shopping Center had opened March 9, 1961 without a theatre. The theatre’s modern screening facility and presentation allowed it to have reserved-seat road shows including “Doctor Zhivago” in 1966, “Thoroughly Modern Millie” in 1968 and “Oliver” in 1969. In 1967, Joy Theatres displays artists renderings of the new twin screen Eastgate Twin Cinema No. 1 & No. 2. But the theatre twinning doesn’t occur until June of 1969. The twins were twinned forming a quad. And then the theater concluded as a second-run discount house.