AMC Classic Woodbridge 5
4626 Barranca Parkway,
4626 Barranca Parkway,Irvine, CA 92604
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I remember those movies coming out thar weekend at the Edwards Woodbridge because I was the General Manager of that theater
Francis Ford Coppola’s 1983 adaptation of S.E. Hinton’s coming-of-age classic “The Outsiders” opened at the Woodbridge 40 years ago this weekend (March 25, 1983).
Starring Matt Dillon, Ralph Macchio and a bevy of up-and-coming young stars (including Rob Lowe, Diane Lane & Tom Cruise) the film opened at number two on over 800 screens (increasing to over 1,000 by early April) and remained in the top ten through early May, finishing with a domestic take just south of $26 million.
Also opening at the Woodbridge the same week: “The Black Stallion Returns” & “Max Dugan Returns.”
The 1983 romantic adventure “High Road to China” opened at the Woodbridge 40 years ago this weekend (March 18, 1983).
Starring Tom Selleck (in his first headlining feature film), Bess Armstrong & Wilford Brimley, the film debuted at number one on over 1,500 screens, knocking “Tootsie” out of the top spot after 13 weeks, and remained in the top ten until mid-April, finishing its domestic run with a take just north of $28 million.
Not a big hit, but an entertaining film with a wonderful score by John Barry.
The 1983 comedy “The Sting II” opened at the Woodbridge 40 years ago this weekend (February 18, 1983).
Starring Jackie Gleason, Mac Davis & Teri Garr, the quasi-sequel to the Oscar-winning 1973 original debuted at number three on over 1,200 screens (the largest roll-out of the new year) but didn’t find the success of its predecessor, grossing just $6 million during its initial run before leaving theaters in early March.
It did receive a lone Oscar nomination, however, for Best Adaptation Score (Lalo Schifrin).
The 1982 comedies “The Toy” starring Richard Pryor & Jackie Gleason & “Airplane II: The Sequel” starring Robert Hays & Julie Hagerty both opened at the Woodbridge 40 years ago today (Dec. 10, 1982).
Each film debuted on over 1,000 screens with high hopes for the holiday season but “The Toy” proved a bigger hit with audiences, finishing with a total domestic take of $47 million compared to $25 million for “Airplane II,” a far cry from the success of the 1980 original.
Heard from the Woodridge Village Assocation that the temporary closure is only a plumbing issue and that the Woodbridge should re-open Monday.
It appears the Woodbridge is once again “temporarily closed” as of today. Disconcerting at best since they just re-opened a month ago after a six-week renovation.
According to the AMC website, The Woodbridge is again open for business starting today with first showings kicking off at 6PM.
All five screens now feature AMC Signature Recliners & reserved seating. A quick look of the online layout shows one theater has 80 seats, three have 70 seats & one has 64 seats. Definitely a more intimate, pared-back set-up compared to its 240-seat average back in the day.
It also appears starting tomorrow weekend matinees will resume for all five films starting at 1PM.
With new amenities come higher prices, though: matinees before 4PM are now $11.09, children $8.99. Shows after 4 PM are $15.89, $12.89 for children. However, their website for this theater still carries the banner “Low Ticket Prices Starting at $5.49 (before 4 PM). Better fix that.
“House II: The Second Story” opened at the Woodbridge 35 years ago today (August 28, 1987).
Starring Arye Gross, Royal Dano & John Ratzenberger, the stand-alone sequel opened on over 1,000 screens but wasn’t exactly the sleeper hit its predecessor was the year before.
I saw it at the Woodbridge opening weekend and have always found it an amusing 90-minute diversion with a memorable performance by Dano as Gramps.
Just got an email from the Woodbridge Village Association: the Irvine Company is telling them the Woodbridge 5 reopening is currently scheduled for Sept. 9.
As the initial post regarding the Woodbridge’s summer renovation project has been deleted for some reason, I’ll provide an update: the Woodbridge has been closed since late July as AMC is installing reclining seats, updating restrooms and refreshing its concession stand to include a small bar.
According to the Woodbridge Village Assocation, the repairs were scheduled to be completed by August 25. However when I dropped by yesterday (Aug 25), the lobby was still full of workers & materials & the process appeared far from over.
Renovation photos posted.
Regal, Cinemark and AMC here in Asheville NC did that when they were installing the recliners. It was summer and Christmas time.
Who closes for renovations in the middle of summer? I guess when your opening at 4 pm & only using two of five screens it really doesn’t matter.
Disney’s groundbreaking sci-fi cult classic “Tron” opened at the Woodbridge 40 years ago this weekend (July 9, 1982).
Starring Jeff Bridges, David Warner & Bruce Boxleitner as the titular hero, the film debuted at number two (again behind “E.T.”) on 1,091 screens and was considered Disney’s event film for the year, complete with storybooks, action figures and its own arcade game.
Unfortunately, like most films that summer that didn’t feature a stranded space alien, it failed to find a foothold, dropping out of the top ten after just three weeks & seeing its theater count slashed in half within a month. It ended its run with a gross of $26 million, against a $17 million budget, finishing the year as the 26th highest-grossing film of 1982.
Like “Blade Runner & "The Thing,” “Tron” developed a cult following on home video where its unique, groundbreaking cinematic contributions (it was basically the first film to use extensive CGI) were studied & extolled by new generations of cinephiles over the years. A successful sequel was eventually made in 2010 (“Tron: Legacy”) with another film in development.
I saw “Tron” as an 11-year-old opening weekend at the Woodbridge, the same theater where that eponymous arcade game would rob me of so many quarters the next two years of my life.
Ridley Scott’s visionary sci-fi cult classic “Blade Runner” opened at the Woodbridge 40 years ago this weekend (June 25, 1982).
Starring Harrison Ford, Sean Young & Rutger Hauer, the film opened at number two (behind juggernaut “E.T.”) on 1,295 screens with high hopes of being a major summer release for Warner Brothers & The Ladd Company. Unfortunately, it was not an initial hit, remaining in the top ten for just three weeks before seeing its theater count slashed in half the next week. It finished the year with a gross of $27 million against a $30 million budget.
It wasn’t until Scott released his Director’s Cut in 1992 that the film was embraced by critics & audiences alike, mainly on home video, and anointed a “classic.”
I was just 11 years old and couldn’t convince my mom to let me see the R-rated “Blade Runner” in ‘82, but I do remember it adorning the marquee at the Woodbridge & flipping through the official souvenir magazine at the nearby drugstore that eventually became the Barnes and Noble.
Looks like the Woodbridge has ceased weekend matinees again as the schedule for April 23-24 shows only two screenings of each film per day with none starting before 4PM.
Weekend matinees have returned to the Woodbridge, as a quick check of the schedule for April 2 & 3 show at least a 1-1:35 PM start time for all four films.
Looks like the Woodbridge continues to operate with just two screenings a day per movie, with none starting before 4pm, even on weekends.
Kind of sad neighborhood kids really don’t get to experience Saturday matiness like I did at the Woodridge growing up. Can’t imagine not having a noon or 1pm show to ride my bike to with friends, as it remains a very fond memory of my youth. Glad I grew up when I did.
The wife & I watched Scream Factory’s new 4K UHD/Blu-ray release of the 1980 cult flick “Alligator” last night & while perusing the advertising extras found a print ad listing the Woodbridge as a featured theater opening day back in November of ‘80.
Never saw the film in theaters as a kid but remember those great TV spots with the alligator busting through the sidewalk. They’re on the disc as well.
New print looks great, by the way.
David S. Ward’s barely seen 1982 dramedy “Cannery Row” opened at the Woodbridge 40 years ago this weekend (Feb. 12, 1982).
Adapted from the John Steinbeck novel, the film starred Nick Nolte & Debra Winger & was Ward’s directorial debut, nearly 10 years after winning the Best Original Screenplay Oscar for 1973’s “The Sting.”
Ward would later score a hit writing & directing 1989’s “Major League.”
Dropped by the Woodbridge Village Center on Monday (Jan. 31) & noticed the Irvine Co. wasted no time in removing all exterior signage from the now-shuttered Barnes & Noble, which closed its doors for good Jan. 23 after nearly 30 years at the center.
Looks like they even slapped on a fresh coat of white paint over the large portico where the large gold “Barnes & Noble Booksellers” sign once hung.
Funny, since most city’s vacated stores can sit for months if not years with the former tenant’s brand, or outline of a brand, over the doors. Not the case in Irvine, though.
I hate AMC’s website, by the way.
A quick check of AMC’s website today shows the Woodbridge hosting screenings again: three films (Spider-Man, Sing 2 & Scream) with no show starting before 4 PM, funny since there’s a big “Low Ticket Prices Starting at $5.49+tax (before 4pm)” banner under the theater’s name.
Guess their temporary closure wasn’t for a renovation, unless they finished it in two weeks.
Back when AMC bought Starplex, we were told they planned on eventually conducting a remodel (similar to what they ended up doing with the former Starplex sites in Bakersfield and La Mirada). After taking over the site a full facility survey was conducted and some preliminary plans were created. I remember questioning the awkward positioning of the freestyle soda unit and was told that they wanted to leave room for installing a bar later on (the area currently occupied by video games). I suspect the delay in starting anything was merely the result of timing; the company’s unstable finances, followed by the pandemic, forced them to place such plans on hold and keep the theatre operating as more or less of a placeholder.
Of course, I’ve been out of the AMC Woodbridge loop for a few years now and their plans may have changed. However, being that they signed a new lease recently, I’d assume the original plans are back on the books. The site’s track record, area’s demographics, and the Irvine Company’s willingness to reinvest/share in construction expenses hold too much potential for them to walk away from (someone else would likely step in if they did).