The Best Independent Movie Theaters in New Orleans

2CA1D3W New Orleans, Louisiana/USA - 8/1/2020: World War II Museum from Magazine Street
2CA1D3W New Orleans, Louisiana/USA - 8/1/2020: World War II Museum from Magazine Street | © William Morgan / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Sarah Ravits
14 April 2018

Often dubbed “Hollywood South,” New Orleans is a cinematic town that boasts some cool, small theaters that screen the big hits, as well as work created by its own independent filmmakers. Here are a few spots to check out for your next movie-going experience.

The Broad Theater

Movie Theater

One of the newest theaters in the city, The Broad Theater quickly became a local favorite, in part because it has created more than a theater space. It’s also a gathering spot for residents of the neighborhood, who are drawn to its cozy lobby area, which has comfortable seating, a bar, and a pop-up restaurant that serves Filipino cuisine. They even host a happy hour from 4–6 p.m. and standard candy and popcorn snacks are also available. One of the coolest things about this theater is that the staff accommodates their audiences’ requests and frequently hosts independent or foreign films that aren’t being screened elsewhere in the city. The Broad Theater is also supportive of local filmmakers and they are one of the destinations at the annual New Orleans Film Festival, as well as other small film fests.

Prytania Theatre

Cinema, Theater
Prytania Theatre, Prytania Street, Uptown New Orleans
Prytania Theatre, Prytania Street, Uptown New Orleans | © Infrogmation of New Orleans / Flickr | © Infrogmation of New Orleans / Flickr
Built in 1914, the Prytania is the only single-screen cinema in Louisiana and the oldest operating theater in the New Orleans metro area. Standing at the corner or Prytania and Leontine Streets, this vintage movie joint was the first theater in New Orleans to convert to digital cinema, and now features an eccentric variety of films to satisfy any audience, including cult classics and current blockbusters. Inside this 100-year-old theater legacy, movie lovers can enjoy everything, from featured old films and films screened at horror movie festivals to influential documentaries and popular national shows, such as the Oscars.

Prytania Theatres at Canal Place

Movie Theater

One of the more upscale theaters in the city, the Prytania Theatres feature multiple screens and possibly the most luxurious seats of any theaters in the city. It’s technically not an independent theater, as it was recently obtained by Regal Entertainment Group, but it does offer local flavor, providing ice cream and other desserts from an iconic dessert shop in New Orleans, Angelo Brocato’s. Management has also decided that in addition to screening blockbusters, they will also feature more arthouse films. Another bonus is that, with the press of a button, you can order food or drinks, and we’re not just talking about soda and popcorn. There’s an extensive Mediterranean menu, as well as cocktails and wine to choose from. Situated inside the posh Canal Place shopping area, the theater offers a more upscale take on the movie-going experience.

Solomon Victory Theater

Movie Theater

Located inside the National World War II Museum, the Solomon Victory Theater offers a one-of-a-kind experience for visitors, who can watch the heart-wrenching, interactive four-dimensional cinematic experience, Beyond All Boundaries. The film was produced exclusively for the National World War II Museum by Tom Hanks and Phil Hettema, and it can be booked for a private showing after-hours. The theater also frequently hosts special events and occasionally shows other screenings.

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