Chautauqua Mall Cinema Manager Speaks On Closing

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LAKEWOOD, NY (WNY News Now) – The closing of a local movie theater came as a shock to many, leaving many movie-goers disappointed. WNY News Now had the opportunity to speak with the Chautauqua Mall Cinema manager about why the theater closed its doors. 

The cinema had been open for many years and was a beloved staple of Lakewood and of course the Chautauqua Mall. 

“The movie industry has been faced with lots of challenges post-COVID, including the imminent threats of streaming. What people don’t realize is that you don’t get that experience, you don’t get the sound, smell, and taste of movie theater popcorn, you don’t get that massive surround-sound and the enjoyment of one hundred people surrounding you and laughing and enjoying the experience with you,” said the manager, Jake. 

Many of the patrons that had viewed a movie in this cinema touted the joys of the comfortable seating and are sad to see it go, however staff at the theater would like to alleviate this concern. Over 50 of the mall location’s seats have been removed and will be installed at the Lakewood Cinema 8 location in the upcoming weeks. 

As for the reasoning behind the shut-down, many factors played into the decision and it was not an easy one to make for the owners. 

“With the mall, we’ve been there for decades, since the 70’s, and while we didn’t want to see this happen and I can say on behalf of the owners they did not want this to happen, they did everything they could over the last several years to make this not happen, and it came down to the mall needs a lot of repairs and we have no bearings on those repairs, we carry no weight or leverage to get them done, so whatever the plan is for the mall, we wish them the best. The owner is a nice guy and it just doesn’t involve us,” Jake explained. 

The Chautauqua Mall Cinema does not have any intentions of reopening at this time. 

While news of the closing is disheartening, the manager is looking forward to National Cinema day on Sunday and is anticipating a busy and happy crowd at the Lakewood Cinema 8 location. 


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