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Morristown Theater to Close Despite Bow Tie Cinema Efforts

Local theater will close May 19, despite attempts from Bow Tie Cinema to extend the lease with the landlord.

Those looking to catch a movie in town will need to look elsewhere. Clearview Cinema Headquarters will close on May 19, an announcement that comes on the heel of Cablevision selling its Clearview Cinema Theaters chain.

Last week, Bow Tie Cinemas of Ridgefield, Conn., announced it has purchased 41 Clearview Cinema theaters from Cablevision. Cablevision bought the cinemas in 1998 and put the chain up for sale last year; Clearview currently has 26 theaters in New Jersey. 

"Bow Tie Cinemas will be acquiring substantially all of Clearview Cinemas movie theaters, however the Morristown theater is not being acquired," said Kelly McAndrew, Cablevision's spokeswoman. "The lease on that facility is expiring and will not be renewed. May 19 is the last day the theater will be open." 

However, according to Christopher Beattie, Bow Tie spokeman, this quick closure of Clearview Cinema Headquarters is not what the company hoped for.

"The lease on the Morristown theater ends shortly, and it is up to the landlord to decide what he wants to do," said Beattie. "We have made extensive efforts to negotiate with the landlord and extend the lease, but we have been unsuccessful to-date. We are still in discussions with the landlord and hope to be able to reach a mutually satisfactory agreement that will allow Bow Tie to serve the Morristown community."

This 10-theater cinema is home to many screenings, such as film Girl Rising which will be shown on Wednesday night as part of a fundraiser by the NY Film Critics Series. Girl Rising spotlights the stories of nine unforgettable girls born into unforgiving circumstances. Following the screening, film critic Alison Bailes—of WOR radio and MORE magazine—will moderate a discussion and Q&A with Academy Award nominee and director Richard E. Robbins. Fifty percent of ticket sales will support girls' programs worldwide.

The NY Film Critics Series has also hosted similar film discussions in the past at Clearview such as The Perfect Family's director Anne Renton and actress Kathleen Turner as well as The Fitzgerald Family Christmas' filmmaker Edward Burns.

With this closure, we'll also be saying goodbye to another familiar face. Cleaview Cinemas is home to Eric Glover, more commonly known as "Fluffy" or "The Ticket Taker Guy," for his antics at Clearview Cinemas. Glover has taken tickets from people with the now-famous cash-register noise and smile since 1993.

In 2011, Morristown Autobody was going to fix Glover's 1987 Cadillac, as part of his present for turning 50 years old. 

Where will you go now to catch a flick?

Janie Hagmann May 08, 2013 at 12:09 PM
I think this is terrible....awfully big town to not have a movie theatre(s). Why are they not renewing the lease? what are they going to do with the space?
Ed Romanoff May 08, 2013 at 12:23 PM
Hopefully, the mayor and city council can become involved. This is a big blow to the vitality and economy of the town. The closing represents much more than just the inconvenience of going to a movie elsewhere.
Patch Fan May 08, 2013 at 12:24 PM
Excellent suggestion. Both the Morristown Partnership and the Mayor's Office need to intervene.
john May 08, 2013 at 12:40 PM
Maybe it could turn into a giant Fro Yo place.
Charlie Gaffen May 08, 2013 at 12:45 PM
This is a shame. I will miss the convenience of the theater and Eric especially.
Sam May 08, 2013 at 01:10 PM
Maybe they'll demolish HQ Plaza and build a building that makes sense. That building is a waste of space. I will miss Eric.
Phil Pine May 08, 2013 at 01:20 PM
We'll miss Eric as well. He'd be a hit at the HUGE Rockaway 16 Theater at the mall with all the people that place gets. I say take care of him 1st!
Moira May 08, 2013 at 02:14 PM
This sounds like hardball negotiating tactics. If this theater closes, we're switching to Fios. Free Movie Tesday is the only good thing about Cablevision.
karla May 08, 2013 at 02:29 PM
The town needs to make every effort to help the landlord and Bow Tie come to a resolution. Although run down, the theater was a great place for teenagers to spend time and socialize. Not much in town for them on a regular basis if the theater closes. And a bonus would be to bring it up to the standards of today's theaters so adults can have a first-class movie experience as well.
John Creamer May 08, 2013 at 02:36 PM
First, the Famished Frog decides not to provide its customers with bread with dinner anymore. And now the movie theater closes down. Is Morristown going to hell in a hand basket? What next? (I know: Several new financial "stores" could open up on South Street.)
Tryclyde May 08, 2013 at 02:51 PM
The town can open up an infinite amount of banks but can't keep a movie theater open? May 19th will be a very sad day for Morristownians.
Mike Ippolito May 08, 2013 at 02:51 PM
as someone that worked with Mr. Glover as well as other local kids in the 90's under the AMC banner, it really is disheartening to see this place go. Not to mention the fact that the theater provided a fun place for the local kids to get their first taste of a real job. Unfortunately, the building itself is a shell of itself & I fear the restuarants on the other side of the building may take a huge hit from this as well. Dinner & a movie will be a thing of the past here.
Norma May 08, 2013 at 02:53 PM
I agree with Karla.
SockPuppet May 08, 2013 at 03:07 PM
Actually, loads of banks are closing their brick and mortar shops. Invest in tumbleweed futures!
Chris May 08, 2013 at 03:16 PM
NOOOOOO!!!!!!! This is my favorite theater. Actually, its the ONLY theater I go to. Eric is the man... I hope AMC or another Theater company buys the Morristown Theater. It would be sad to see it go.
Tryclyde May 08, 2013 at 03:26 PM
Gobsmacked, not in Morristown; they're a plague here.
Al Baron May 08, 2013 at 04:39 PM
Sounds like the owners have bigger plans that they have been working on for some time. Department store ? The theater is really run down. The last 2 movies I saw there had problems.. One movie we were only charged a children s rate. They told us in advance that the movie was not the best quality. It had a line running down the center the whole time. The other movie we were told that it ended abruptly. It did end even before the credits rolled.
PeterB May 08, 2013 at 04:42 PM
@ Moira - Maybe you haven't heard but Cablevision has sold the Clearview Cinemas, there for the last day of Free movie tuesday is May 28th. So you might as well switch to FIOS now.
Prentiss Gray May 08, 2013 at 07:00 PM
Wow, Bummer. Although it looked to me as if attendance was way down for the last couple of years. It would be nice to get another theater there, or maybe even a "fork and film." It's the curse of headquarters.....
SockPuppet May 08, 2013 at 08:12 PM
Tryclyde, I do know that Chase on Park Place is going away, not sure if it's a Morristown trend yet. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323699704578326894146325274.html
homebuyer May 09, 2013 at 12:51 AM
The businesses in town should pay a tax and form a partnership that would work on there behalf. Oh wait, they have the ghost organization called the Morristown Partnership....................Do something!!!!
David Steketee May 09, 2013 at 12:45 PM
The Morristown Partnership is responsible for those light post banners that make it look like it's Halloween every day.
David Steketee May 09, 2013 at 12:48 PM
We went there once, it was horribly outdated.
Samantha May 09, 2013 at 02:38 PM
Why must we always knock someone down when they are doing something positive. Ms. Foster has done so much for Morristown. She only wants the best and ppl can't handle that. She has done more within the last 3 years then I have seen any of her predecessors. Everyone has a past let focus on what she is able to help bring to Morristown. Keep up the good work Ms. Foster.
Brother Shabazz May 09, 2013 at 06:01 PM
So much for staying in town and saving gas. I guess it's back to East Hanover, Parsippany or Rockaway...smh
Motown Resident May 09, 2013 at 10:34 PM
Ms. Foster should spearhead the dismantling of the Morristown Partnership and take the salaries saved and put the monies towards additional policemen and firemen. This is another example of that agency doing nothing to further the business interests of Morristown and it's community. Where is the Mayor on this issue? I bet if someone was running against him this election, he'd be working a little harder. The economic impact of the losing the theater reaches beyond Headquarters Plaza.
David Steketee May 09, 2013 at 11:51 PM
The Morristown Partnership does not receive much funding from the town. That said, I do think they don't do nearly as much as they could to promote the town. They could take the time to provide information to prospective businesses on the town, but they don't (or didn't two years ago when I recommended it).
homebuyer May 12, 2013 at 12:50 PM
The Morristown Partnership has a budget of about $800,000 and pays it's executive director about $180,000 plus additional staff salaries. It also pays the Parking Authority $7,000 a month for rent. (These figures are hear-say). I think for that kind of money the community of Morristown should get some sort of benefit from this organization other than light-post banners. I'm with Gobsmacked, let's invest in tumbleweed futures..................
chinola33 May 15, 2013 at 10:52 PM
I suspect there may be some "posturing" going on with Bow Tie, the landlord, and the city. If Bow Tie now owns Clearview but the lease in at HQ Plaza is not renewed, what good is owning that location? Clearview Cinema, along with the Mayo Theater, keep the numerous Morristown restaurants alive and well. With the loss of the cinema (WHOEVER owns it...), then ALL the storefronts in Morristown will turn into banks! It's true that HQ Plaza has been decaying for decades, but shamefully no one has done anything to turn it around.
homebuyer May 16, 2013 at 12:02 PM
Correction, the Morristown Partnership has a budget of 1.3 million !!!! What are they doing other than the employees feathering there own nests?? This is a great example of what could be done or at least attempt to done by the partnership. Time to reallocate the resources Mayor.

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