AMC Valley View 16

13331 Preston Road,
Suite 2300,
Dallas, TX 75240

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: AMC Theatres

Previous Names: AMC Classic Valley View 16

Nearby Theaters

Panorama of lobby

General Cinemas Theatres closed its Valley View I & II (which has its own page on Cinema Treasures) on January 5, 1992, the Valley View mall was without movie theaters for more than 10 years.

This megaplex opened over the Sears store as the AMC Valley View 16 on May 14, 2004. It was closed on March 17, 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. It later reopened but closed again on February 13, 2021, this time closure was permanent. There was a change of heart and it reopened on June 25, 2021. It was closed in December 2021.

Contributed by Bruce Calvert

Recent comments (view all 15 comments)

Chris Utley
Chris Utley on February 25, 2020 at 7:29 pm

In the meantime, as it walks it’s slow death march into oblivion, AMC’s now charging only $5.99 a ticket all day every day for FIRST RUN flicks. Needless to say, they’re packing em in at those prices!

rivest266
rivest266 on May 5, 2020 at 9:45 pm

Higher quality grand opening ad posted

rivest266
rivest266 on May 8, 2021 at 2:16 pm

AMC website mentions that the theatre is “closed for Maintainance” as of May 8th, 2021. Wanna bet that it won’t reopen?

dallasmovietheaters
dallasmovietheaters on May 8, 2021 at 4:11 pm

I called there and the staff was on site trying to get it to reopen…. yet still will not be taking that bet.

MCDisney
MCDisney on June 22, 2021 at 2:52 pm

Theater still listed on AMC’s website. Theater to reopen with showing this Friday on June 25th, 2021. Same name and company.

rivest266
rivest266 on January 3, 2022 at 4:41 pm

Closed, the theatre has been removed from the AMC website.

Scott Neff
Scott Neff on January 5, 2022 at 11:49 am

Actually, last shows appear to have been on ½/2022.

CaptainRob
CaptainRob on January 5, 2022 at 11:05 pm

Not to nitpick, but the GCC Valley View actually closed on January 5, 1992. I know because I was there. We had one week’s notice. Unlike the several other local GCCs that closed that day. Also Dillards was on the North wing, JC Penneys on the West, Foleys/Macys on the West, and Sears on the SouthEast. I shopped that mall hundreds of times and my family went to the Sears before the mall was even built.

dallasmovietheaters
dallasmovietheaters on January 6, 2022 at 4:57 am

Dallas' Valley View Center Mall had a twin-screen theater in its basement from August 17, 1973 to January 5, 1992 (I was off by six days on an earlier post - very sorry) with the General Cinema Valley View I & II. But the mall would be theater-less for more than ten years until the 2004 entry of the AMC Valley View 16. The genesis of the AMC Valley View Center theater dates back to a failed attempt in 1994 by AMC and its EDG affiliated branch to build a $94 million, 24-screen entertainment and dining mall complex between Valley View and the nearby Galleria shopping mall just west of Valley View. But the AMC project lost traction as did a previous 18-screen Cinemark theater plan for that same general area that was vetoed by the Dallas City Council.

AMC soon thereafter announced a 24-screen theater to be built in 1996 at the Prestonwood Mall just North of the Valley View and the Galleria in a $125 million facelift. Its five-screen external Prestonwood theater would be replaced inside the mall. But Prestonwood would belly flop as it shedded its anchors in 1997/8 and the mall was torn down altogether. With AMC dying with its aged 5-screen Prestonwood theater not far from the flattened mall, it announced in 1999 that it would build a 20-screen theater above Sears in the Valley View Center. The AMC Prestonwood shuttered that year.

With Valley View at 93% occupancy and nearby Prestonwood and NorthTown malls both eliminated, AMC and mall specialist Macerich, the relatively new owner of Valley View, felt the1973-built mall was a winner. When the plans to build above Sears became entangled, those plans were scrapped and the project was delayed. Macerich solved the problem by opening the middle of the mall and creating a space for AMC as the focal center of the mall two floors above above the food court. The film industry trade publication Variety warned of building theaters into aged malls as the mall shakeout was in full force entering the 21st Century.

The now 16-theater concept by Omniplan Architects — the same group responsible for the nearby Northpark Mall — finally opened May 14, 2004 with two Dallas Cowboy players and the mayor in attendance. Auditoriums all with stadium seating capacities ranged from 92 to 299 seats. Optimism abounded. But within three years – as the Variety article had predicted – Valley View would begin a gradual decent to greyfield status, an industry term akin to a “dead mall”. Macy’s – which had been in the mall just over one year – had seen enough of Valley View and quickly bailed. Then Dillards. Then JC Penney. Even the mall’s carousel in the center of the complex’s lower floor departed. The mall had just a once-free standing Sears opened in 1964 as its only retail anchor. AMC had a ghost town theater sometimes with more screens than actual customers.

In 2010, Macerich didn’t make the mall payments and it was in the hands of Bank of America. Never a good sign. AMC would change its pricing structure to a low-cost first run pricing policy ($4/$6 shows) to bring in anybody as theaters within striking distance including the Look Cinema, Alamo Drafthouse, and Studio Movie Grill “Keystone” opened to the north and east. Thanks to social media from customers and certainly not due to any AMC advertising – there was none – audiences actually began gravitating to the dying mall to watch current movies. Ten years into its life, the theater had finally found its audience.

The theater was further encouraged by a new mall owner in Beck Ventures who in 2012 planned to have AMC at the heart of a $3.5 billion transformation of Valley View that would be completed by 2017. AMC hedged its bets by announcing its AMC Village on the Parkway, a 12-screen then reduced to 9-screen luxury cinema just yards away from the former General Cinema Prestonwood / Montfort theater and 2.5 miles north of Valley View. As of 2014, it was unclear if the ambitious Valley View project would be completed by 2017 or, say, 2027, so the theater soldiered on with its low price concept and its luxury cousin Village on the Parkway opening in November of 2014. 2015 and 2016 saw Beck Ventures do nothing with the Valley View Midtown project. The lack of activity was discussed at a Dallas city council meeting in June of 2016 with Beck Ventures announcing demolition at the end of 2016 with a new, smaller 10-screen theatre proposed for the former Valley View Center spot. (Rendering of the proposed and highly unlikely AMC Midtown project, is in photos.)

Then 2017 – the year when the Midtown project was supposed to have been completed – came and went taking with the lightly-trafficked Sears store, the final remaining anchor, with it. The only action at the AMC Valley View was a downgrade – the theatre was designated as an AMC “Classic” generally associated with inherited properties from Carmike or Starplex or any other circuit that were never going to see recliners or Coca-Cola Freestyle machines. Classics were also the most likely candidates for closures at end of leases.

Then 2018 passed with Valley View demolition in progress - then stalled. But, finally, the eviction notes came for the remainder of the Valley View Center tenants who had to scram by March of 2019… except the AMC 16. The mall was further razed in 2019 with the former Valley View I & II being bulldozed along with the wing containing the former Penny’s anchor, the wing containing the Dillard’s, and the wing containing the Sears. (An earlier version of this post had those directions a bit skewed - apologies to all.) The West wing anchor (Saenger-Harris / Foley’s / Macy’s) was also removed but the adjacent southwest entry remained as a fairly creepy passageway through the ghost mall that didn’t exist. That dimly-lit passage that was without HVAC – seriously cold on frosty days and balmy on hot days, and wet on rainy days - brought cinema patrons a floor above the boarded-off food court, the dead-ended center main floor of the former mall, and – most importantly - the escalators, stairway, and elevator that offered an upward climb to the AMC facility. Fortunately, the AMC theatres retained its HVAC system allowing for comfortable auditoriums and unpredictable lobby and box office conditions.

The AMC Classic Valley View 16 closed along with the rest of the chain on March 16, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 2020 was a challenging 100th Anniversary for the circuit with AMC shuttering numerous “Classic” name-plated and inherited locations during the Summer of 2020 as well as some of its larger AMC branded properties as it plotted its COVID-19 pandemic business strategy with reduced locations. The circuit removed its “Classic” designation from this location during the pandemic and it reopened on August 27, 2020 under its original AMC Valley View 16 moniker. Heading into a three-day 2021 Valentine’s Day and President’s Day weekend, the Valley View was ready for big business. Unfortunately, the temperatures plummeted and a rare and punishing snow storm changed the weekend from money-maker to near catastrophic. The theatre closed during that weekend and was on the ropes unable to reopen following the storm. The roof over the entry way proved to be porous and there were challenges to be found on AMC"s upper level, as well. This had to be the end of the line. Yet, somehow - and for reasons that aren’t really clear - the theatre came back to life one more time reopening on June 25, 2021.

The going wasn’t smooth in what would be the final stage of operation for the AMC Valley View 16. HVAC costs, already high due to COVID, were becoming an issue. The pathway to the parking lot became a challenge with the construction occurring and the theatre was downgraded to weekend-only operation. Parking illumination was another issue so the theatre reduced showtimes often to just two shows per day and often eliminating late shows. Cars had returned to the Valley View but mostly for the free COVID testing station just outside of the mall. That snake of cars often blocked the path to the theatre parking area. Inside the mall, the writing was on the wall on January 2, 2022. Employees – some dressed like Eskimos – braved the chilly lobby as temperatures dipped into the 20s in Dallas. Employees did not let on that the last day was occurring and conducted business as usual as the AMC Valley View and the carcass of the Valley View Center Mall passed into the night.

Speaking as someone who was there on opening day and closing day as well as way, way too many days in between, if remembered at all, the AMC Valley View 16 should be labeled as a fighter in a league with the Forum 6 Cinema at Arlington, the Nova 6 Cinemas in Moline, the Fox Theatre in Toledo’s Woodville Mall, and many, many others like it. These are the theaters that locals would have contended had gone out of business years earlier but the operator and employees fought on against shifting populations in ghost-town retail strips and malls in virtually impossible working environments yet delivering on their goals of providing cinematic moments to a cadre of patrons. We salute you, AMC Valley View 16.

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