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Cleveland's Tower City Cinemas Closes

File photo of showtimes listed at Tower City Cinemas in Cleveland [ideastream]
Showtimes listed at Tower City Cinemas

After shuttering its theaters in March due to the pandemic, Tower City Cinemas will not be reopening. Cleveland Cinemas, which operates Tower City Cinemas and others in the region, announced the Tower City Cinemas closure in a news release Monday afternoon.

“While Tower City Cinemas has been closed since March due to the on-going health crisis, with the lease expiring, a decision was made to not reopen the theater,” said Jon Forman, president of Cleveland Cinemas, in a written statement.  

Cleveland Cinemas Marketing Director David Huffman declined to speak any further about the closing or the effects of the pandemic on the business.

The Tower City theaters were part of a Terminal Tower redevelopment project in the early ‘90s, which included the stores and food court.  

The Cleveland International Film Festival announced last January the annual festival would leave its longtime home at Tower City and relocate to Playhouse Square next year. The film festival ended up canceling this year's in-person event and shifting to an online presentation.

When asked for comment on any plans for the theater space, Bedrock Detroit, Tower City's owner, responded with an email statement: “At this time, there are no updates to share on Tower City other than it remains a top priority for Bedrock. We’re working hard to ensure that what is included is something that is welcoming and that fits into the atmosphere and feel of downtown Cleveland.” 

Cleveland Cinemas recently reopened Cedar Lee Theatre in Cleveland Heights and Chagrin Cinemas in Chagrin Falls. Two other locations, Apollo Theatre in Oberlin and Capitol Theatre in Cleveland, remain temporarily closed, but Cleveland Cinemas plans to share reopening dates soon, according to the news release.

In 2019, Cleveland Cinemas stopped operating the Shaker Square theaters and Atlas Cinemas, another independent theater operator, took over the space.

Carrie Wise is the deputy editor of arts and culture at Ideastream Public Media.