GROSS: The Ritz Bullying Indie Cinema Outta The 215?


The Ritz at the Bourse pulled “In the Valley of Elah” from its screen Tuesday, telling callers to the box office that the decision had been made “for legal reasons” and referring would-be moviegoers to the Roxy Theatre (2023 Sansom).

Roxy owner Bernard Nearey [NOT pictured] says Landmark Theatres, which bought the three Center City Ritz theaters in March, is trying to muscle him out of showing first-run movies. Sources say Landmark told Warner Independent, the film’s distributor, that it pulled the film to protest the Tommy Lee Jones‘ movie being booked at the Roxy, too.

“It’s an example of corporate greed,” Nearey says. “I’ve got 140 seats in each auditorium here. They have 12 screens in town. Why should a large corporate organization be able to muscle out an independent operator?” he asks. “They think when they bought the Ritz, they bought the rights to screw other theater owners,” Nearey says of Landmark. Landmark declined to comment yesterday, and a call to Warner Independent was not returned by deadline.

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