Atlanta's Tara Theatre to close after nearly 55 years

An Atlanta movie theater named for one of the South's most iconic fictional locations will soon be closing its doors.

Tara Theatre, known for showing mostly independent and, in the past, sometimes even controversial films, will be closing its doors.

Rumors have been circulating since the start of the pandemic the location, situated near the corner of Cheshire Bridge and Lavista roads, would close.

Those rumors became reality this week as owners Regal Cinemas confirmed it would be shuttering the theater.

Regal Cinemas released the following statement regarding the closure:

"As part of our real estate optimization strategy, Regal has made the decision to close our Regal Tara theatre as we continue to position our company for long-term growth. We are working to support our employees through this transition, and we thank them for helping to make us the ‘Best Place to Watch a Movie.’

"All of our other Regal theatres in Atlanta – including Regal Atlantic Station, Regal Hollywood N-I85, and Regal Perimeter Pointe – remain open and are operating as usual. We look forward to continuing to serve our guests and members at these locations and providing them with the most memorable cinema experiences."

The theater opened in 1968 as the Loew’s Tara, a 1,200-seat single theater named for the plantation in the Atlanta-centric movie "Gone with the Wind." The theater would split into two in the 1970s and then would become four theaters in the next decade.

It was acquired by Regal Cinemas in 2002 and underwent a remodel that invoked silver screen legends, calls back to the golden age of film, and an art deco appearance.

No official end date has been given for the theater, which has been an Atlanta institution for nearly 55 years.