Alamo Drafthouse Cinema Opens Theater In Chicago’s Historic Wrigleyville Neighborhood

The cinema company opens their Chicago theater along with Video Vortex, a standalone cocktail bar/video rental store
Alamo Drafthouse Chicago to Open Friday, January 27
Photo: Official
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On Friday, January 27th, Austin-based cinema-eatery Alamo Drafthouse Cinema will welcome film lovers from Chicago to their brand new theater, Alamo Drafthouse Wrigleyville.

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Tickets are available for purchase now at drafthouse.com and the Alamo Drafthouse mobile app with the cinema company’s mix of new releases and classic films available. Through February 5th, guests will be welcomed into the new cinema with a 25% discount on food and non-alcoholic beverages.

Across from Wrigley Field in Wrigleyville at 3519 N Clark St. (at Addison), on the third floor, the 6-screen, 372-seat theater is the company’s first location in Illinois. All theaters will be equipped with state-of-the-art Cinionic 4k laser projectors and immersive Dolby surround sound. The theater is easily accessible by car with metered street parking and $10 validated garage parking, and is only a five minute walk from the Red Line and a less than a 10 minute walk from the Brown and Purple Lines. The new location will also house Video Vortex, a standalone cocktail bar with an actual video store (11,000+ curated VHS, DVD and Blurays are available to rent for free.) Video Vortex also features retro video installations by the art collective Media Pollution. Video Vortex is a love letter to the video store culture of the ‘80s and ‘90s that fostered the cinema company’s love of film and will feature trivia, music and other radical events and parties.

“Alamo Drafthouse Wrigleyville is something we have been looking forward to for a very long time,” says Alamo Drafthouse CEO Shelli Taylor in a statement. “This is our first theater in Chicago, a city with a storied movie history, and our first ever in Illinois. We’re thrilled to be here, and we’re excited to show Chicagoans everything we have to offer to the cinema experience.”

Alamo Drafthouse Wrigleyville is committed to celebrating everything that makes Chicago unique, and that starts with its location in the historic Wrigleyville neighborhood.

“Wrigleyville has always been associated with local Chicago pride and we want to add
something incredible to the neighborhood and all of Chicago,” says Alex Shebar, Community Marketing Manager for Alamo Drafthouse Wrigleyville.

In honor of the city’s deep cinematic history, the cinema-eatery will feature a lobby photo op themed on Chicago director John Hughes’ film, FERRIS BUELLER’S DAY OFF. The photo op will recreate the unforgettable moment when Ferris’ reluctant co-conspirator, Cameron, sends his father’s beloved sports car flying out a window.

Alamo Drafthouse Wrigleyville opens amidst the continuing resurgence of the cinema industry.

With a name like Drafthouse, it makes sense the cinema-eatery would include a standalone bar. Video Vortex is the theater’s unique cocktail bar concept celebrating the video rental store culture of the ‘80s and 90s. The retro-themed design features art installations with video screens playing VHS clips and VHS-themed decor. The bar will feature a menu of custom and classic cocktails along with 32 beer taps. The back bar will also be available to host small events, parties, and even film screenings on giant screens that cover the walls.

In addition to its drink options, Video Vortex will feature an extensive collection of 11,000+ DVDs and Blu-rays available to rent for free, along with 200 VHS tapes, curated by the Found Footage Festival, Midnight Rental, and Chicago’s own Bric-A-Brac Records and Strange Tapes Zine. Any guests who haven’t held onto their DVD player or VCR will be able to rent one for a small fee.

Alamo Drafthouse Wrigleyville will also continue the exhibitor’s long tradition of repertory programming and memorable live events. Guests can look forward to interactive Movie Parties of classic films complete with games and props.

To further commemorate the occasion, Alamo Drafthouse Wrigleyville is giving a few lucky Chicago cinephiles a chance to win some prizes including tickets to an invite-only, VIP Grand Opening event before the theater opens to the public and a year of unlimited free movies through Alamo Drafthouse’s monthly subscription service, Season Pass. For a chance to win, simply follow any of the Alamo Drafthouse Chicago social channels.

Lisa Hay

Lisa is a staff reporter for What Now Media Group. She covers new restaurant, retail, and real estate openings across all of our markets. A true foodie, this Air Force veteran has lived all over the world — from Aviano, Italy to Nairobi, Kenya — but her favorite spot is NOLA for its rich history, architecture, culture, and of course, its good eats.
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