San Jose

San Jose Theater Brings the Show to the Roof

NBC Universal, Inc.

After being shut down for more than six months, one South Bay theater is getting creative by taking the show… to the roof.

As big chains around the country are closing, the director of 3Below Theaters and Lounge in downtown San Jose said it’s time to switch it up by putting together a rooftop theater.

It opened Thursday, and they’ll have daily showings until November 1.

“It’s exciting to be out of the house for an event, instead of just going to the store,” said Keita Wangari of San Jose.

Dan Leavitt, also of San Jose, agreed.

“It also feels a little odd to be going somewhere, other than commuting from my bed to my home office,” he said.

Many safety precautions at the theater are in place, including cleaning protocols, spaced out chairs and hand sanitizer.

Tickets are $25 and come with a food voucher.

The co-owners started the “up on the roof” showings out of necessity during the pandemic. The downstairs theater still can’t open.

“We were able to work with the city and county to make that happen, by virtue of restaurants being able to open outside,” said Scott Guggenheim, director at 3Below.

Movie theaters are struggling nationally. Regal Cinemas closed most of its theaters again, and most don’t know if they’ll survive.

“The arts were the first thing to get shut down and will likely be the last thing to reopen,” Guggenheim said. “Having this opportunity is at least some way of getting people together and having some community.”

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