3Below Theaters & Lounge

288 S. 2nd Street,
San Jose, CA 95113

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Camera Cinemas

Functions: Live Performances, Movies (Independent), Special Events

Previous Names: Camera 3

Phone Numbers: Box Office: 408.831.3168

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POV from Back Row

With the success of the Camera One, Camera Cinemas opened the 3-screen Camera 3 on May 18,1984. Located on the bottom floor of a high-rise in downtown San Jose, this has been the premier place to see art and independent films. The main auditorium seats 300, the two smaller auditoriums seat 100 each.

With the opening of the Camera 12 across the street(in the former UA Pavilion 8), this closed July 8, 2004. It briefly became a stand-up comedy venue, but has since reopened as an art house cinema.

Contributed by scottfavareille

Recent comments (view all 10 comments)

GaryParks on June 22, 2004 at 12:52 pm

Here’s hoping that Camera Cinemas will save the beautiful, neo-moderne vertical sign from the Camera 3. Maybe it could have a new home on the Camera 12? Being that it simply reads, “Cinema,” this would be an excellent idea. Downtown San Jose needs all the illuminated signage it can get.

Eric on July 1, 2004 at 11:25 am

The sign was saved and moved to the Camera 12.

scottfavareille on July 2, 2004 at 10:01 am

According to the Camera Cinemas website, this will be closing on July 8.

GaryParks on July 2, 2004 at 1:47 pm

Yes indeed, the former Camera 3 neon vertical sign is in place on the Camera 12! The original red letters reading, CINEMA are still in place, and between them, new white neon letters reading, CAMERA 12 blink on and off. In addition, aluminum sheet metal strips of “film” snake in and out over the formerly stark entrance. These “filmstrips” are backed with blue neon. In addition, the sides of the building feature new CAMERA 12 horozontal neon signs. At last, a welcome touch of flashy showmanship has come to what was once a plain building. Congrats, Camera Cinemas!

johnnyeponymous on May 21, 2005 at 9:59 am

The Camera 3 is coming back!

The Folks at eth Cameras have said that teh Three is re-opening come Summer 2005!


FoxFan on May 21, 2005 at 10:44 am

Yes, Camera 3 will be back! It’s true!
But someone told me it will be EXCUSIVE INDIAN FILM-FARE -
not really what I envisioned.

johnnyeponymous on May 21, 2005 at 4:22 pm

I was told by one of the managers that it was going to be art house again.
The Towne did go Indian, whcih was OK

johnnyeponymous on August 7, 2006 at 7:51 am

It’s now the San Jose location for National Comedy Theatre presents ComedySportz. I think they started playing there in December of 2005.
I guess they aren’t reopneing the movie theatre anytime soon

nobodyimportant on December 27, 2018 at 10:43 pm

The theater has been renovated and the name has been changed to 3Below Theaters and Lounge. Got changed to a blend of events and film. Occasionally show first run independent films, but not nearly as much as they used to.

rivest266 on April 20, 2024 at 10:40 am

This opened as Camera 3 on May 18th, 1984. Grand opening ad posted.

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