Prime Cinemas Takes Over Sierra Cinemas

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Tue, 12/12/2023 - 09:46 -- Nick Dager

Prime Cinemas has taken over Sierra Theatres in Grass Valley, California. New owner Brian Young says, “We’re planning for a seamless transition just in time for the holidays. Operations will continue with most movie-goers noticing no changes. In the new year, we plan to make some improvements but mostly we want to continue the quality movie-going experience that folks expect in Grass Valley.”

Pictured, left to right, Azriel LaMarca, Michael LaMarca, Brian Young and Katherine Young in the lobby at Sutton Cinemas in Grass Valley.Sierra Theatres has been operating for several decades in Nevada County. The company got its start in 1979 when owners Mike and Barbara Getz started the Nevada Theatre Film Series on Sunday nights in Nevada City. I

In 1989 the Getz’s opened Sierra Cinemas on East Main Street in Grass Valley and eventually took over Sutton Cinemas and the Del Oro Theatre in the early 2000’s. The company became a true family business during the 2010’s as the Getz’s daughter and son-in-law, Azriel and Michael LaMarca, got involved and expanded the business to add food and beverage sales at the Sierra Cinemas CineCafe, remodeled Sutton Cinemas and renovated the Del Oro marquee and tower.

Sierra Cinemas closed in 2020 due to the COVID pandemic. The company was able to reopen its other two Grass Valley locations – Del Oro Theatre and Sutton Cinemas — in 2021.

“At this point, the movie business is recovering from the COVID disruptions and looking to the future,” says Azriel LaMarca. “We felt it was a good time for us to close this chapter of our lives and move on to new things. We’re pleased to have found another independent theatre owner with similar values to take over our business and continue the movie-going experience for our community. It’s bittersweet, and definitely the end of an era. But we are looking forward to the change for our family and we wish Prime Cinemas success.”

The Getz’s will remain the owners of the Del Oro Theatre building; Prime Cinemas will lease the theatre for its business operations.

Prime Cinemas has operated a six-screen movie theater in the town of Red Bluff, California for the past 15 years.