Source: Steve Bielawski
It's interesting that Phoenix Theatres took up the lease on this theatre. In 2003, they assumed the lease on the Movies at West River in Farmington Hills, which had been a United Artists theatre. In 2007, they assumed the lease on the Frenchtown Square Theatre in Monroe, which Regal Theatres had allowed to lapse. These two, along with the Bel-Air in Detroit, gave them three theatres in their chain.
Then, in the summer of 2009, they suddenly closed the Bel-Air and apparently sold the West River to Dipson, a chain which mostly operates in Pennsylvania and Upstate New York. I had assumed that they didn't have the money to keep going, and were just keeping on with the Frenchtown Square because they had given it new renovations and because it was the only theatre in town (with the Denniston closed).
Then, in December, all of a sudden, Phoenix leased the Laurel Park Place 10, which AMC had abandoned in October. It is nice to see the theatre get new ownership, but for me, it is even nicer to see some smaller operators stay in business. Mind you, I have nothing against the big chains, but I especially like seeing the little guys own and operate movie theatres. My grandfather was one such, and my mom's family ran that theatre for a long time, so I have a soft place in my heart for movie theatre owners who are not big chains. I think that I'll have to go back there again from time to time.