Southland Cinema

12615 W. Dixie Highway,
North Miami, FL 33161

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Additional Info

Architects: Manfred Mancusi-Ungaro

Firms: E. Abraben & Associates

Functions: Medical Center

Previous Names: North Miami Theatre, Southland Theatre, Under Ground Theatre, Miami Way Theatre

Nearby Theaters

Former North Miami Theatre

A self standing theatre, this location may have started out as a playhouse since it’s awkwardly uncentered projection booth seemed like an afterthought. The North Miami Theatre began screening movies on May 5, 1949 with John Wayne in “3 Godfathers” and is listed as open in the 1950 edition of Film Daily Yearbook.

A discount house in it’s latter days, the North Miami Theatre had an extended run of “I Am Curious (Yellow)” in the late-1960’s which was still a hit even though the Miami Herald refused to accept the advertisements. On November 6, 1970 it was renamed Southland Cinema.

Following its closure in 1986 it was gutted internally and converted into a medical center.

Contributed by Al Alvarez

Recent comments (view all 31 comments)

kenya on November 7, 2012 at 10:15 am

I remember going to this theater with my cousin and sister to watch Saturday Night Fever and Grease.

remkoolhaas on January 1, 2019 at 6:00 pm

Does Anybody know the date it was constructed?

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on January 1, 2019 at 8:14 pm

It started showing movies in May 1949 and was operated by E. Bramscombe, who owned the Coral Way Auto Drive-In. The opening night was sponsored by the Optimists Club. Was it a live theatre before then? The awkward location of the projection booth suggests that it was.

dallasmovietheaters on May 6, 2019 at 8:14 pm

Relaunch shown here on February 21, 1963 as the North Miami Theatre to the plans by E. Abraben & Associates firm with “A Girl Named Tamiko.

rivest266 on January 26, 2020 at 11:19 am

The North Miami theatre opened on May 5th, 1949 with “3 Godfathers” with John Wayne. Grand opening ad posted.

rivest266 on January 29, 2020 at 4:49 pm

Reopened on November 6th, 1970 as the Southland Cinema. Admission: $1. Grand opening ad posted.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on September 2, 2021 at 12:41 am

The May 14, 1949 Boxoffice article about the opening of E.E. Branscome’s North Miami Theatre said that the event, a benefit for the Optimist’s Club, consisted of five acts of vaudeville and the feature film “The Untamed Breed.” This must have been before the beginning of regular operations on May 5, 1949, but Boxoffice doesn’t give the date of the event. It was likely on May 4.

The off-center projection booth noted by some earlier commenters was probably the result of the inclusion of a small balcony that served as a smoking loge on one side of the house. Despite the vaudeville acts at the opening, the North Miami was a new build, not an old legitimate theater converted for movies.

Boxoffice gave the name of the architect as M. Ungaro. After poking around the Internet I’ve concluded that this must have been Manfred Mancusi-Ungaro, a fairly well known Miami modernist in his time, best known for designing many single family houses and small apartment buildings. I’ve found no other theaters among his works.

JackCoursey on February 2, 2023 at 9:10 pm

Any idea as to when this theatre closed? The interior has been gutted and transformed into a medical clinic. A little bit of the exterior remains intact, just enough to reveal it was once a theatre.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on February 3, 2023 at 8:19 am

It stopped showing movies in 1986 but I don’t know how long it operated as the Miami Way.

webpilot1 on February 4, 2023 at 12:04 am

Actor Phillip Michael Thomas (Miami Vice)had it as an Actor’s Theatre after the show’s run ended.

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