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Iconic Sunnyside Center Cinema Sign Likely to be Demolished

(Photo: SunnysidePost)

April 10, 2014 By Christian Murray

The iconic Sunnyside Center Cinemas sign was damaged this morning and is likely to be demolished.

The building manager Michael Christopher said that a truck hit the sign while it was traveling along Queens Blvd. Another man said later today that a truck backed into the sign.

However, there was no sign of a truck on the scene.

Workers from the Department of Buildings were on their way to the theater to determine whether the sign should be destroyed.

A firefighter who evaluated the condition of the sign said it was rotten inside and would most likely have to come down.

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Paul Maringelli

According to what we were told by a fireman on the scene, the marquee was knocked down by a FIRETRUCK with a “cherry picker” as it was backing up so that firemen could inspect the roof of the building next door.
NYFD caused the damage.

Preschool Teacher

That marquee survived the 2 recent hurricanes with just a nick! When are bad drivers going to be held responsible for their actions?!! Buses stopped there for 50 years and never crashed into it!! Fix the marquee! Don’t take it down!






A box truck is high enough to hit it. I heard it backed into the sign and the left the scene.

jimmyz got some new moves!!

no pic of jimmee behind a podium looking pissed demanding we rebuild? was he busy today??

Danny C

Bambi, Death Wish 3, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Karate Kid 2, Powder, Major League 1 & 2, a few Friday the 13th’s, A few Nightmare on Elm Street’s, Batman (1st one w/Keaton), Big, Police Academy 2 & 3, Hand That Rocks The Cradle, Arachnophobia, Harlem Nights, The Three Amigos, Matrix, Another 48 Hours, Apollo 13, Copy Cat, and many other movies I’ve seen there.. Loved Super Tuesdays $3..

Major Ma'condo

I grew up in Sunnyside and Woodside and this theater was one of 3 in the nabe, the Bliss, The Sunnyside and The Center, and this was the Center. I cant count the times I was in here and as a kid, it was plush with great seats, velvet curtains covering the screen, so those days are gone obviously, but in the day, this was no dump, when mom and day brought you here it was a cinema experience.

This does sound like an intentional insurance job, given the status of the rest of the block. I’d say a new apartment building will be there within 3, maybe 4 years. I’d almost bet money on it. MM



Look, I’ve been the first on here talking about the hipster state of affairs but let’s be honest this theater SUCKED. I’ve seen bootlegs with better quality. Last time I was there I got bit by a bed bug, I know it was a bed bug because I get a very specific reaction.

Tear it down.

Marilyn S.

I remember the glory days of the Center Cinema in the 1950s, then it’s period as a cinema for “Adult Movies”–but even then it was never cheesey–just showed explcit films for adults. It was a lovely art deco establishment. In recent years it had become very dirty and unpleasant on the inside–bad upkeep and no respect for the customers.

I’m always sorry to see small cinemas go down until we are left with only the mostly ugly Multiplexes. Almost the only really nice cinema in New York these days is the Paris by Central Park South.

Hope something good for the neighborhood comes out of the demolition and destruction of the 43rd St. QBlvd site.

jimmyz got some new moves!!

great, now we get a better look at all the graffiti on the rest of the building!


Great attempt at insurance fraud. “A truck hit it!”

Was it driving on the sidewalk?

Tear that dump down.

Celtic Bark

“Workers from the Department of Buildings were on their way to the theater to determine whether the sign should be destroyed.”

Uhm, from the look of it, I’d say the sign already has been pretty much destroyed.

Me, resident

The Sunnyside Movie Theatre, located on Queen’s Blvd., and 43rd Street, is just one of many Sunnyside businesses shutting down. As a long-time resident of Sunnyside, the area seems to be on the down-fall–businesses closing left and right. Not in the best interests of current landlords, who are asking outrageous, rental prices and will not negotiate a lower price. This is not going to attract newer people who want a great neighborhood at a much lower price (for which Sunnyside has been known). Decent families and singles will look elsewhere. Landlords, think twice about your asking price for a rental. I fear the worst is yet to come in Sunnyside, Queens.


I hope the sign gets repaired and whoever the truck driver is should be held responsible for the damage.

P.S.: @me & @JOR
This theater is trying to get as much cash as possible to spruce the place up. So at least have some respect. If you don’t like it, move out of Sunnyside, Queens then.


so instead JOR and me we should pay $15 at kaufman for hollywood garbage. this theatre is a great deal and allows moviegoers a no frills experience.


By the way, I guess the same truck that brought the space shuttle to the museum in Cali a couple of years back must have been heading west on Queens Blvd. last night and nobody noticed.


Frank – wait.. Chips closed? I was just there a few weeks ago. No way!

I love our little crappy theatre. I hope it stays!


It seems like Marvin the Torch visited the place. Dirty dealing all over Sunnyside. The place is crawling with money whores.

Frank Daykin

It’s probably just the first sign of the whole thing coming down due to redevelopment. Very suspicious, in light of the vacancy of the bank, and the closing of Chips.


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