Event Cinemas’ Tower Cinemas to close next month
One of the landmarks of the Newcastle CBD, Event Cinemas’ Tower Cinemas, will screen its final movies next month, much to the dismay of many local residents.
The 1,500-seat, three-screen location will shut its doors on December 5 after 42 years. The move follows the closure of Event Cinemas’ five-screen cinemas in Cairns and Darwin City.
Attendances had been badly impacted by the construction of the Newcastle light rail project but the cinema traded well during the school holidays. All team members will be offered redeployment options at Event’s cinemas in Glendale and Kotara.
“Like Cairns and Darwin, the decision is based on our strong commitment to keep reinvesting in our other venues in the region,” an Event spokesman told IF. The company has not revealed its plans for the site.
The venue has not been upgraded since it opened in 1976 so it still has the original seats, but patrons are lamenting the loss of the last remaining CBD cinema on social media.
One resident, Linda Drummond, posted on ABC radio Newcastle’s Facebook page: “I am devastated. I love the wide range of options at the Towers, which has shown dedication and commitment to a broad range of films – especially with community film festivals.
“What will happen to the smaller, independent films now? This cinema offered something totally different to the shopping centre cinemas. Paving paradise… but they’ll probably put up an apartment block – not a parking lot.”
Charmaine Clark said: “I am very disappointed to see this cinema close. While the seats did need an upgrade the quality art films, festivals and fundraisers will surely be missed. The quality of seats at Event Kotara is average and I hate how you can hear the sound from adjacent cinemas in the multiplex.
“I hope another cinema operator will redevelop and continue to offer the cultural mix that filled a need in Newcastle.”
Daniel Kavanagh said: “This makes me so sad. 42 years this cinema has been part of our cultural heritage. Another closure contributing to the ghost town that used to be the best city in the world.”