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The River Oaks Theater will reopen after Sugar Land-based Star Cinema Grill purchased the historic location, Kimco Realty, the company that owns the shopping center where the theater sits announced Wednesday.

The theater closed in March of 2021 after the owners were not able to pay rent due to the pandemic. After the theater closed, prominent Houstonians, like rapper Bun B, rallied together to try and find a way to reopen the theater. Now, the location will include the staple feature of other Star Cinema Grill locations: a dine-in option.

“This is not going to be a Star Cinema Grill, I want to make this very clear,” Star Cinema Grill director of development Jason Ostrow told CultureMap. “There will be a dine-in component; it’s to be determined on how it functions.”

Don’t expect to see big block busters at the newly reopened River Oaks Theater. Although it will be a Star Cinema Grill, it will primarily feature indie films and movies by local Houston directors.

There is no set date for the theater to reopen, but considering the building is getting a refresh — it likely will not open before the end of the year.

“The decor will feel like you’re in 1930, but it’s going to feel very new and updated and fresh,” Ostrow told the Houston Chronicle. “So we’re designing custom-made seats for this facility that are only going to be in River Oaks.”

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