The Upper West Side is getting a new movie theater! And not just any theater, but a really cool one that serves food and drinks to you in your seat!
Yahoo! Or as the theater company said in its press release “Holy moly, you guys.”
Okay, enough exclamation points. Here are the details:
The Alamo Drafthouse, an Austin Texas theater, is going to open a new theater in the historic Metro Theater on Broadway between 99th and 100th Streets, the company announced in a press release today. That theater has sat empty for years, and been the subject of all sorts of sad legal wrangling. The Drafthouse will open next year, although the exact opening date is unclear.
Update: Check out West Side Rag’s exclusive interview with the president of the Alamo Drafthouse previewing the opening.
This is no ordinary theater company moving in: The Drafthouse offers full meal service at your seat while you watch a movie. It’s also famous for a notoriously strict no cellphone policy — they have no problem kicking people out who use their phones during a movie!
This opening news is particularly special because the Upper West Side was once known for its great independent movie theaters, before all of them closed down. For old-timers, the loss of those theaters is one of the saddest changes to the neighborhood. The Metro Theater, which opened in 1933 as the Midtown Theater, was a particular neighborhood favorite.
Here’s the release:
“Austin, TX— Thursday, April 5, 2012— Alamo Drafthouse Cinema is pleased to unveil its plans for its first location in New York. The five-screen Manhattan-area theater will be owned and operated by Alamo Drafthouse and located on the Upper West Side, occupying the former Metro Theater at 2626 Broadway.
“My often-stated top priority for the Alamo Drafthouse has been to open a venue in New York,” said Alamo founder and CEO Tim League. “When we discovered the availability of the historic Metro theater, we immediately knew we had found the perfect location for our new Manhattan home.”
The venue will feature five screens of new releases, repertory programming and the Alamo’s unique signature programming. Like all Alamo Drafthouse theaters, the Alamo Drafthouse at the Metro will provide food and drink service to your seat and will uphold its famously strict no-talking policy. The new theater is currently scheduled to open in 2013.
Alamo Drafthouse is now accepting applications for managers, kitchen staff, creative programmers, bartenders and waiters for the upcoming Manhattan theater. Employment applications can be downloaded at www.drafthouse.com/about/employment“
I’ll have more on this as soon as I catch my breath. Thanks to Gavan Vogler for the tip.
Image of Metro Theater in its heyday via Alamo Theater.