Iconic Jersey Shore Cinema To Reopen After Pandemic Closes
Historic Jersey Shore cinema gets a second chance after shutting down during COVID-19 pandemic.
Atlantic Cinemas in Atlantic Highlands opened a century ago, but had to shut down during pandemic shutdowns.
“Like I say to everyone when they say, ‘Congratulations,’ I say, ‘Well, thank you. I’m freaking out, ”says theater operator Tony Zertuche.
Zertuche admits it’s an uncertain time to run a movie theater. But the Atlantic Highlands playwright with a film degree says films have always fascinated him.
He rented the five auditorium theater, which was closed by its owner-operator last year. He plans to reopen it next month.
“I’ve had so many people say to me, ‘This is where I met my wife or had my first date. This is where my parents met, ”says Zertuche.
He says he’s counting on community nostalgia and the post-pandemic desire to get out there and do things.
The box office has been spotty since the start of the pandemic, with up to 25% of theaters still closed in the US “A Quiet Place Park II” has set pandemic box office records in ticket sales. But “In The Heights” didn’t reach the high box office rating the industry expected.
Zertuche says he plans to show blockbuster films, as well as arthouse and independent films. The theater will be renamed The Atlantic.