When the Showcase Cinemas opened in Black Rock in 1992, it was a big deal for the neighborhood that saw its last picture show at the Beverly on Fairfield Avenue in 1985. Now it appears they will go dark in favor of National Amusements’ movie houses just around the corner in Fairfield. Both the Beverly and Merritt Theater in the North End closed around the same time. If you want to see a movie in the city, check out the Bijou Theatre Downtown.
From the CT Post:
This could be the last July 4th weekend that the explosions, gunfire and screams synonymous with summer movie blockbusters rock the walls in the Showcase Cinemas on Canfield Avenue.
After two decades, the owner of the old Black Rock neighborhood movie house–National Amusements–announced it would put the multiplex on the market, further reducing film fanatics’ options in Greater Bridgeport.
Full story here.
Smh wow, love this theater why not close the one in Fairfield instead. The Bridgeport theater has way better comfy seats, etc.
With the new train station, turning that theater into condos would be a goldmine. Plus, bringing consumers into town would be good. More people spending more money and doing it local.
“We have no plans to discontinue operating Showcase Cinemas in Bridgeport prior to sale,” she emphasized. That quote by Rachel Lulay, spokesperson for the property, is in direct contrast to the CT Post headline it appears, but that is nothing new for the paper. Headlines are meant to be cute or sensational to stimulate readers. And Post personnel never respect the headlines sent in with a story.
In any case, the failure of the Fairfield developer to complete the initial phase of the rail parking project required the State to come in with funds and that changed the financial status of Fairfield, as well. Now the parking lots are not overflowing with cars routinely, and the developers want to change the project to housing in the main instead of retail and office space (that puts less pressure on schools but pays tax revenues to the Town).
I am a movie goer and attend at each theater. I had not really focused on seats in one being more comfortable than the other. Probably true. And hospitality of one group of employees to the public is also something of which I am not aware. The defining element of the two theaters is the type of programing they carry and here I find more serious, including Independent style films in Fairfield, in contrast to action/destroyer movies and foreign films with little or no promotion at the Bridgeport location.
The owner/taxpayer made no distinction as to which of the two properties was relatively more profitable. It may be the Fairfield format may appear easier to sell in the future so first things first? The property may be on the market for some time inasmuch as a new owner would need money for the property purchase and the conversion to a new use, and then face the tax burden the rest of us contribute to annually.
The Bijou has attempted to use its space for live entertainment as well as film, a good idea for serious moviegoers who would have to travel far to see the “shorts” and other special programs. Changes … yes. What will be? Time will tell.