East Northport's Elwood Quad cinemas, which closed during the pandemic,...

East Northport's Elwood Quad cinemas, which closed during the pandemic, is reopening, the theater owner said. Credit: Newsday/Steve Pfost

The Elwood Quad movie theater, a longtime fixture in East Northport, is reopening, the theater owner said Friday.

The theater closed in October 2020, a casualty of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Jay Levinson, who ran the theater for 20 years before it closed, said renegotiating rent with the landlord and signing on two new business partners enabled him to reopen the theater. He said the theater's concession stand will offer a new adult beverage. 

“We’re working on the building as we speak, and I hope to be open in June, but definitely by July,” Levinson said. “We’re sprucing everything up. We have added deluxe recliner seats, new floors, new screens and projector, a LED sign for the marquee and much lower prices than the bigger theaters. And we’ll have liquor.”

Levinson said he’s in the process of applying for a liquor license. He also has hired new management to run day-to-day operations. An old favorite — birthday parties, with no price increase — will also be back.

“Even better is that we can do the parties anytime of the day,” he said. "We will continue to have first-run movies, too." But Levinson said the theater won't open in time for Tom Cruise's new movie.

In March 2020 the theater closed under a statewide executive order from then-Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo because of the pandemic. On Oct. 29 that year Levinson announced the independently owned theater was closing. 

At the time he said he couldn't afford to hang on, especially, with concerns that the coronavirus was reemerging.

"It was a tough decision but it had to be made," he said. 

The landlord, Englewood, New Jersey-based Treeco/Elwood Limited Partnership, could not be reached for comment Friday.

Levinson said the theaters will be smaller because of the new, larger recliner chairs, but patrons will be pleased with the new experience.

“I hope people come back. I know it’s been a long time but when they come back everything will be spiffy and new,” he said. 

Levinson said he is also reopening The South Bay Cinemas in Babylon. 

“I’ve changed almost everything there,” he said. “But we will keep the low prices and will do the same birthday parties at any time.”

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