By Carol Tannenhauser
Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine greeted WSR by phone Monday night with the words, “It’s real!”
He was referring to the plan announced this morning for the Metro Theater to become a “multi-screen cinema center, with restaurant facilities and community meeting rooms on a rental basis,” by Metro owner Albert Bialek.
Levine said the magic words: “I spoke to the owners of the entity and they have signed a lease.”
The name of the entity is being withheld for fear of inducing competition.
That’s it for now!
I hope this report is correct – but found this recent article (4 days ago):
https://patch.com/new-york/upper-west-side-nyc/metro-theater-upper-west-side-set-become-retailer-permits — which states: “The landmarked theater on Broadway between West 99th and 100th streets is being prepared for a retailer and will not continue as an art center, according to Building department records.”
Maybe the mysterious plans require some kind of retail permit? Otherwise, sounds like we may be disappointed again…
I believe Bialek did that in order to could start building out the place. He probably has to have the space a certain way before the principals get the keys.
“The name of the entity is being withheld for fear of inducing competition”. What does that mean? Why would naming the entity induce any competition?
Could be an entity like Netflix that could spur other chains and steamers to open other cinemas nearby.
Long overdue, UWS was once a haven of movie theaters.
Now all that’s left are 2 theaters that make you choose your seats in advance without seeing them!– and one of those catering only to the wealthy.
Don’t forget the Riverside and the Riviera!
Yes! Don’t forget the Paris, west of 5th Avenue on 58th street. I loved that theater, since it was an old small theater, no disgusting food smells, attentive audience that didn’t feel the need to have their phones out, or chomp on food whilst watching films. It pulled people from east and west, and was great to go to the movies and walk through the park.
The Paris is indeed open again, with Netflix as the owner. They needed a screen to show their films to qualify for the Academy Awards. So, who else is making films that doesn’t own a theater or film distributor and is based in California? Apple.
Isn’t the Paris Theater open again now?
Yes, it is.
Those theaters had only one or two screens each. The AMC theaters have many more screens so the total is probably about the same.
The romantic days of independent theaters with personality is over. It has been for a long time. It’s not a NY thing.
On the positive side, large theater chains provide a much better movie experience once the lights are off and the movie starts. Seating, sound quality, picture quality.
There are at least four, really five. AMC 84th St, AMC Lincoln Square, Film at Lincoln Center has two, and the replacement for Lincoln Plaza in the church on 86th St. Which one caters only to the wealthy?
AMC Lincoln Square 13
Child Age 2-12 $14.99
Senior Age 60+ $16.49
Or “Kick Back and Enjoy the Show” for about $350 for the screening.
AMC also offers a daily 30% discount for any movie before 4pm and $5 tickets on Tuesdays.
If you join the AMC Stubs program, it’s a monthly flat fee of $19.95 that entitles you to see up to three movies a week including IMAX.
I can’t believe more people don’t do this. Nor can I believe people are complaining about being able to reserve a seat in advance so you don’t have to get to the theater early and watch 20 minutes of trailers.
— “…one of those catering only to the wealthy.”
How does a theater “cater to the wealthy”?
If you mean “high ticket prices” or the cost of a bucket of popcorn, does Yankee Stadium then “cater to the wealthy”?
It’s expensive to live in New York City — we all know that. Maybe that means that the entire City “caters to the wealthy”?
“The most expensive regular adult ticket in New York City is for $17.99 at the AMC Loews on Manhattan’s Upper West Side…The least expensive regular adult ticket in New York City is for $7.50 at Main Street Cinemas.”
I have lived in the area since before it was a Spanish porno place. Even back then when we went to the movies, we were smart enough not to buy soda, candy etc at the theater You always brought in in your jacket pockets.
“Maybe that means that the entire City caters to the wealthy”
Yes, it does.
I’ve seen so many deals announced over the years that I won’t believe this until it actually opens. And the comment about “inducing competition”? You have to be kidding me–this theater has been vacant since 2008. Alamo Drafthouse was so confident it had a deal in 2012 that it hung a banner on the marquis. I have a photo to prove it!
More theaters in the area would be most welcome.
Do people still even watch movies anymore? So 20th Century.
These days it’s all about Youtube and Tik Tok videos. Everyone knows that.
Just ask anyone under 50 years old. /s
I can’t remember the last time I went to a movie theater. It might have been Metro before it closed, seriously.
Inducing competition? That’s funny.
Don’t know how to start a new thread but I was just told Suba pharmacy is closing on April 15.
As a former longtime resident of the UWS you left three off the list: The Riverside (96th& B’way), the Rivera (96th & B’way) and the Symphony (95th & B’way.
You can read about them here:
you who Metro Theater; the link for new job opportunities? please share👌🏼
Is it possible the wages would be a living wage for the UWS in order to walk to work or work from home and live in the neighborhood too?
This is FABULOUS news! One of the many great things about the UWS in years past was the plethora of movie
houses showing GOOD pictures….WELCOME BACK,
Maybe an Alamo Drafthouse?
Alamo is based in Texas. WSR previously reported that these principals/the entity is from California.
“Something big is happening at the Metro Theater,” Bialek told West Side Rag. “
When he says big does he mean something “Giant” from California? Maybe Burbank
Most of the dine-in theater chains are based in Texas.
I did a quick search of California-based theater chains that served meals, and I only found one named IPIC which does have a theater on Fulton Street.
There is also vintagecinemas.com, but they seem to focus on replicating the “classic” film experience.
And Vintage Cinemas sold the Visa Theater to Quentin Tarantino. Maybe he’s involved with this. The fact that he’s incorporating other uses at that location (the arcade) makes it more likely.
How about the Edison, Nemo, Riverside and Riviera?
In 1981, Manny Kirchheimer’s (my husband’s) documentary film, We Were So Beloved: The German Jews of Washington Heights had an extended run at one of the two screening rooms at the Metro Theater. The other room was showing Spike Lee’s She’s Gotta Have It at the same time.
Spike Lee was in school in 1981. “She’s Gotta Have It” was released in 1986.
Maybe that was a typo. The film WWSB was released in 1985.
Having the multi theaters idea is great but please,No food in them! Drinks ok,popcorn too,but the smell of that greasy stuff!!!!
Have a out of theater cafe for all that crap.
Of its so “real” why did the crew load up every last tool/bit of equip they had and when asked by a number of folks different members of the crew said there was a “problem” and their bosses told them to pack it up