New Jersey movie theater closes doors after nearly 92 years

The Warner Movie Theater in Ridgewood, New Jersey is closing its doors after nearly 92 years, but there is hope that the building could be re-imagined.

The theater will close after the evening shows on Sunday, Jan. 28.

Originally opened on June 15, 1932, as a single-screen movie theater premiering "The Dark Horse" starring Bette Davis, The Warner Theater transformed over the years. 

In 1978, it was converted into a two-screen venue, and in 1984, two more screens were added, bringing the total to four.

Back in 2013, Bow Tie Partners purchased the Warner Theater, and everyone had hoped for another century in business, but then the pandemic hit. 

Despite the closure of the movie theater, Bow Tie Partners expressed its commitment to remaining a part of the downtown Ridgewood community. 

"It's a big loss for Ridgewood," Mariam Ebraheem said. Ebraheem manages the candy shop nearby and worked closely with the theater for years.

"Even a lot of people that don't live in Ridgewood come to this theater because it's quieter," Ebraheem said.

The company is actively exploring various redevelopment scenarios for the movie theater space, with one option being the conversion back to a single auditorium for use as a performing arts venue.

"We offer our sincere thanks and appreciation to all of our loyal customers who, over the past 11 years, have provided us the honor of hosting them at the movies in Ridgewood," Ben Moss, Owner of Bow Tie Partners said.