Every passing year brings a spate of closings among New York’s treasured institutions, and 2018 is off to a running start with the announcement that Sunshine Cinema on East Houston will close its doors for good on January 21. The closing date was confirmed by Landmark, the theater’s operator, to Deadline.
“We’ve known it was coming,” Landmark Theatres CEO Ted Mundorff told Deadline, saying that there’s no special send-off planned at the theater. “There’s nothing to celebrate.”
East End Capital and K Property Group purchased the Lower East Side’s Sunshine Cinema on East Houston Street for $31.5 million in May, and laid out a plan that would see the century-old building converted into a mixed-use development with retail and upstairs office space. But those plans changed come November, when the developers filed an application to demolish the building.
Developer East End Capital’s website says that they’re now planning on charging forward with a “new, best-in-class office building with retail at the base.”
The theater, a favorite for cinephiles, opened in 2001. Rising rents put the theater into financial duress; it was served a death blow in 2012 when the Lower East Side community board rejected Landmark’s proposal to offer food and beverage service at the theater.