Forget about being a Maverick. Mark Cuban is jumping onto the dinner-and-a-movie bandwagon, with his Landmark Theatres chain looking to follow the lead of popular local establishments such as Nitehawk Cinema and Alamo Drafthouse.
The art-house theater chain, which owns 54 cinemas nationwide including the Landmark Sunshine on the Lower East Side, is scouring the five boroughs for spaces ranging from 25,000 to 50,000 square feet to open multiple locations.
The billionaire investor’s company has tapped broker Brad Schwarz at Lee & Associates to lead the search.
As movie theaters face competition from the Internet and in-home entertainment, attendance hit a two-decade low in 2014, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
In response, cinema owners are shifting toward providing moviegoers with an enhanced experience by offering drinking and dining options in front of the big screen.
Local examples include Williamsburgh’s Nitehawk Cinema and Yonkers’ Alamo Drafthouse, which is set to open up shop this year at City Point in Brooklyn. (Gary Barnett’s Extell Development bought the last development parcel at the site in June for $120 million.)
Landmarks’ cinemas won’t serve food in the theater, though they will feature a bistro-style food-and-beverage component.
In addition, The Boca Raton, Fla.-based iPic Entertainment inked a deal late last year to open its first New York City location at the Howard Hughes Corp.’s 11 Fulton Street at the South Street Seaport and is looking for more spaces, as is the Cinemex company out of Mexico City.
Cuban’s Landmark chain, which the Dallas Mavericks boss owns with investment partner Todd Wagner through 2929 Entertainment, had sought a liquor license back in 2012 for the Sunshine theater on East Houston Street in an effort to boost attendance.
The local community board balked however, and earlier this year the site was being shopped around as a potential residential development site.
Cuban, who is a co-host of the TV show “Shark Tank,” is reportedly taking on an activist-investor role in Reading International, which owns Angelika Film Center, the Minetta Lane Theatre and the Orpheum Theatre.