Altamonte Cinema 8

303 E. Altamonte Drive,
Altamonte Springs, FL 32701

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dallasmovietheaters on September 15, 2021 at 4:41 am

The General Cinema Renaissance Center project was announced in 1986 but the City put the project on hold over a road project. Since the circuit already had a presence at the Altamonte Mall, the wait likely wasn’t as urgent as for the center’s owners. Renaissance Center launched in Fall of 1989 and the General Cinema Altamonte 8 Renaissance Center opened May 25, 1990 along with the General Cinema Lake Mary Centre 8.

GCC closed the twin-screen venue in the Altamonte Mall’s parking lot on March 23, 2000 at the end of a 25-year leasing agreement. That property was razed. But General Cinema was headed toward bankruptcy that same year. The chain’s reliance on aging multiplexes was decimated by other chains which built modern megaplexes. Retaining symmetry with the Lake Mary, General Cinema closed both locations on September 28, 2000. General Cinema also vanquished the Colonial Promenade and Fashion Square that day to exit the Orlando market altogether. GCC would announce its bankruptcy plans which found its skeletal remaining portfolio of theatres eventually sold off to AMC Theatres.

AMC would open an 18-screen megaplex in 2003 at Altamonte leaving time for more money to be squeezed from the 8-screen multiplex. Entertainment FilmWorks Circuit of Florida took on the Altamonte and Colonial Promenade locations in 2001 on five-year leases. SunStar Theatres took on the Lake Mary 8 on January 19, 2001. The Altamonte then re-emerged on July 20, 2001. The Promenade was the first of the GCC venues to re-closed just a year later on October 31, 2002.

The Altamonte 8 passed from EFW Circuit to Theatre Management Inc. / TMI Theatres Circuit of Deland on December 15, 2002 continuing first-run films. The AMC 18 launched on June 27, 2003 and TMI closed its Altamonte 8 on July 20, 2003 transferring ownership to new operator Jim Norton of JPN Cinemas. The Altomaonte returned that Friday on July 25th repositioned as an art film venue with some second-run titles in August of 2003 under the name of Altamonte Cinema 8. It closed on January 2, 2005.

TouchStar Cinemas, which had taken on the former GCC / EFW Colonial Promenade, gave the Altamonte 8 one last chance as an ultra discount, sub-run house. It relaunched June 17, 2005 in time for the Memorial Day weekend offering $1 popcorn, drinks and films. It added Middle Eastern films to its second-run mix and almost inexplicably gave the theatre an overhaul in January of 2006. TouchStar left the venue on August 17, 2006 with programming ostensibly continuing at the Picture Show at Alamonte Springs.

Scott Neff
Scott Neff on November 28, 2016 at 1:29 pm

This theatre has since been demolished.

rivest266 on November 27, 2016 at 11:36 am

May 25th, 1990 grand opening ad for this cinema and the Lake Mary 8 in the photo section.