Columbus: Dark Days for Small Theaters

by Maureen McCabe on February 19, 2013

Marcus Cinema CrosswoodsThe movie industry is changing.  Are these dark days for theaters in small towns?  Are there dark days for smaller independent theaters  as the movie industry goes digital?

Columbus movie theaters include mostly chains…The big changes in the movie business could make small town movie theaters a thing of the past.  A video from WBNS 10 TV News tells the story of  two small independent theaters, Studio 35 in Clintonville and a Circleville, Ohio theater, The Movie House.   The video tells what the movie theater in Clintonville was able to do to remain viable in 2013.

Each new digital movie projector costs $80,000.

I don’t go to all that many movies but this makes me glad to live in a city where I can go to a first run movie when I want to. Did you realize the small town theater might be a thing of the past in 2014?

Columbus and central Ohio theaters include:

Rave at Polaris


Dublin Village Center
Lennox Center




Grove City

Studio 35 in Clintonville is one of those smaller theaters you’d wonder about if you heard a theater need to invest in equipment to show digital films.

Central Ohio small non-chain theaters

Are Gateway Film Center and Arena Grand Theatre independent?  They are both new, multi-screen theaters with lots of bells and whistles.  Beer, bistros and other events.  Gateway Film Center and the Arena Grand Theatre in popular urban Columbus neighborhoods both seem to have enough traffic.

Grandview Theatre

Drexel in Bexley

The Strand in Delaware

The Grandview Theatre serve beer and have local pizza, pastries, chocolates, etc as well as popcorn, soft drinks and the usual movie theater candy.  The Grandview Theatre has karaoke every 2nd and 4th Saturday.  The Grandview Theatre’s site says “Since 1926.” WOW!  The Grandview Theatre’s site also says “Single-screen and proud of it!”

The top image is the Marcus Cinema at Crosswoods in the Worthington area built in the early 1990s.


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1 Jenna February 19, 2013 at 04:26 pm

This is a very poorly written article. You haven’t said much of anything. I was excited to read this article because I really like Studio 35 and with a title like “Dark Days for Small Theaters”, I expected to read about how the small theaters are going under or what some, like Studio 35, are doing to combat that fate. You could have said something about what it is doing differently from other theaters (indie or not), you could have talked about how the small indie theaters have been finding new ways to compete nowadays with beer tastings and TV screenings and classic movie nights. Instead you basically said, “Here is a list of movie theaters and the cities they are located. Wow, movie projectors sure cost a lot nowadays!!!!”

Next time, actually write something worth reading.

2 Maureen McCabe February 19, 2013 at 06:06 pm

Hey Jenna, thanks for stopping by. I guess thanks to for your honest critique of how this post does NOT meet your needs. I am sorry I was NOT able to please you. You probably NEED to just move along and read someplace else though because I do NOT have the time to do the research you need me to do for your reading pleasure. Sorry to let you down!

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