The Elvis Cinemas chain, which counted a trio of movie theaters in Denver, Littleton and Arvada, has closed for good after more than two decades in business, according to a posting on its website.
“Thanks to everyone who was a part or was a patron for the last 23 years,” owners wrote on elviscinemas.com this week. “We will miss all of you.”
The family business represented one of the only multi-location exhibitors in Colorado that wasn’t owned or operated by out-of-state concerns. It may have flown under the radar for some moviegoers looking for the biggest, brightest and loudest experiences possible.
But for many longtime metro-area residents, and especially kids, it held a special place as an affordable entertainment option and refuge from the world.
Owners did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Thursday morning.
The reduced-price movie houses attracted families, people on dates, and anyone looking to get away from the crowds at $20-per-ticket megaplexes, supporters said. The closure sent fans to social media to mourn the loss and recount their best memories there.
“I grew up going to this theatre,” wrote Facebook user Isabella Aragon. “I’m 23 years old, and I had my first ‘date’ with my bestfriend Andres Romero watching ‘Moonrise Kingdom’ in 2012. To this day we are still best friends and that memory I talk about to everyone! Thank you for allowing me and my uncle to have so many memories there too. I’m forever grateful.”
Elvis Cinemas was long known for showing second-run movies, which played for discounts after moving out of big, first-run chains — but also stayed there awhile before heading to home video. Streaming has since changed that model, collapsing the distance between exhibition and online availability to mere hours in some cases. As such, Elvis had switched to first-run features before its closure, showing Marvel’s “Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania,” “Knock at the Cabin” and “80 for Brady” at the time of its final announcement.
“This is terribly sad. So many memories of my dad taking us here as a single parent,” wrote Facebook user Eliz Dolcé. “Thanks for providing a wonderful opportunity, especially for single parents on a tight budget. We will miss you!”