Two weeks after arthouse film fans in Los Angeles found out they were losing a beloved institution in the Landmark Theatres Pico, the Landmark Theatres company announced Thursday it has signed a long-term lease to operate at the Playhouse 7 in Pasadena, with plans to open in the summer.
“The Playhouse acquisition is important for Landmark, as we’re able to continue the tradition of showcasing quality film to Pasadena’s movie-going community,” Landmark Theatres President Kevin Holloway said in a statement.
“This theater has a deep history, which we look forward to honoring and building upon in the years ahead.”
The company plans to undertake a series of renovations in the coming months to the seven-screen, 1,300-seat venue located at 673 E. Colorado Blvd. Planned improvements include upgrades of the sound and projection systems and modernized seats.
The venue’s concession stands will get an upgrade, too — with the company promising “gourmet and healthy food items,” alongside traditional fare such as popcorn.
Beer and wine will continue to be available, with plans to expand the offering to full spirits, according to the company.
The Playhouse 7 was built by Laemmle Theatres and opened Feb. 5, 1999. It’s been run by that company ever since, though Laemmle sold the building to GD Realty in 2020, to shed debt, and leased it back.
Earlier this month, Landmark announced it will close its Pico location at the end of May after 15 years.
“For months, we’ve worked to extend our tenancy of The Landmark Pico but have been unable to reach terms. We send our deepest appreciation to the Pico staff, guests and the filmmaking community for their support over the years,” Holloway said at the time.
The Pico location was Landmark’s westside flagship.
At the time of that announcement, Hollway also said, “We’re exploring opportunities to expand our Los Angeles footprint, which we hope to be able to share more on soon.”
Landmark’s other Los Angeles locations — the Nuart Theatre in Sawtelle and the Landmark Westwood in Westwood Village — remain open.
The Pico’s demise followed news last April that the ArcLight Cinemas and Pacific Theatres chains would not reopen after shutting down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Movie-goers quickly launched a petition on Change.org in an effort to preserve the ArcLight’s Cinerama Dome on Sunset Boulevard. As of Thursday, nearly 29,000 people had signed the petition. The Dome’s owner announced late last year plans to reopen the movie house, but no official plans have been finalized.