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Laemmle movie theater in downtown L.A. shutting down

October 5, 2009 | 11:15 am

In another sign of downtown L.A.'s struggles during the economic downtown, officials have announced that the Laemmle Grande 4-Plex movie theater will shut down later this month.

For two decades, the Laemmle has been showing mostly art-house fare under a hotel on Figueroa Street. At times, it was the largest movie theater downtown.

The closure comes as a new 14-screen Regal cinema is set to open next to Staples Center.

The Regal cinema has met with much anticipation after the opening of the L.A. Live entertainment complex. L.A. Live describes the cinema as "the West coast flagship for Regal Cinemas ... including 140,000 square feet of state-of-the-art cinema with 14 screens and 3,800 seats including an 800-seat house suitable for the industry’s most glamorous movie premieres."

More on the closure of the Laemmle from blogdowntown:

Laemmle Director of Operations Kevin Gallagher confirmed that the staff was informed of the announcement on August 1. While the company discussed the option of focusing on art films or commercial crossover indie films, it felt that the specialized market needed more than locals to fill the house. "It's always been difficult to bring people downtown and even though the image of the city [is] changing, we felt it was best to close the doors," said Gallagher.

-- Shelby Grad

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