Ziegfeld Owner Denies Report Theater May Close

While the venue has regularly closed during slow periods, shutdowns during the lucrative summer season are unusual

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    Ziegfeld Theatre

    Prolonged shutdowns of the Ziegfeld, the city's largest surviving single-screen venue, had fans concerned about the venue's survival, but the theater's owner denies reports of its possible closure.

    "We have no plans to close the Ziegfield Theatre," a spokeswoman for Cablevision, the owner of the legendary theater, told NBC 4 New York in response to a New York Post report that the theater may close.

    Moviegoers were shocked to find the the Ziegfeld closed over Memorial Day weekend, the Post said. The theater reopened on June 1, but was soon closed again until last week.

    While the venue has regularly closed during slow periods, shutdowns during the lucrative summer season are unusual, the Post reported. 

    Cablevision announced in May that it wanted to sell the theater along with its Clearview Cinemas chain. The Post reported that sources familiar with the situation estimate the Ziegfeld is losing around $1 million a year.

    Operating expenses for the 1,131-seat theater were once covered by the flashy Hollywood premieres that made the Ziegfeld famous, the Post said. But in recent years there have been fewer such events and competition from Imax theaters have caused the Ziegfeld to lose out on audiences.

    A Clearview representative declined to discuss the venue's finances, but denied that the closures were a signal of the Ziegfeld's demise.

    “In addition to showing the latest blockbuster films, Clearview’s Ziegfeld Theatre is a landmark location for movie premieres and special events,’’ Clearview said in a statement. “It is normal course of business for the theater to be closed at certain times to accommodate these unique marquee activities.”

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