The staple Lincoln Plaza Cinemas in Manhattan is slated to close in January, after the landlord decided not to extend the lease, a spokesperson for the theater said Friday night.
"It's disappointing. You know, these are the little places that make New York fun — neighborhood places," one man outside the theater said. "So we're sorry to see it go."
The six-screen multiplex on the Upper West Side has been around for more than 35 years.
In a statement, a spokesperson for Milstein Properties, who built the theater in 1978, says the building that houses the theater needs "vital structural work" to repair and waterproof the plaza, which they say can begin now that the theater's lease has expired.
"At the completion of this work, we expect to re-open the space as a cinema that will maintain its cultural legacy far into the future," a spokesperson for Milstein Properties said in a statement.
The owners, Dan and Toby Talbot, said that they did all they could to keep the theater running.
"I think it's a shame. And we've come over from all the way over on the East Side," said another moviegoer. "We come a great distance to come to this theater because it's an institution."
Many films debuted with exclusive engagements at the cinema.
The owners said plans are being made for an official goodbye next month.