Will Spider-Man Have a New Landlord? Broadway's Foxwoods Theatre Is For Sale
By Kenneth Jones
Live Nation Entertainment is seeking to sell Broadway's Foxwoods Theatre, currently home to Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, according to an offering announcement by commercial real estate giant Jones Lang LaSalle Americas. Executives in the Broadway producing community received notification of the offering on Dec. 5, Playbill.com learned.
The Jones Lang LaSalle firm is working with Live Nation Entertainment on the sale of "100 percent controlling leasehold interest" in the Foxwoods Theatre, the cavernous 83,706-square-foot legit theatre in the heart of New York's Times Square Theatre District. The four-story theatre has entrances at 213 W. 42nd Street and 214 W. 43rd Street.
With the sale comes the ability for a new owner to change the name of the 1,932-seat venue, which is a mid-1990s construction that conflated two historic Broadway houses/facades — the Lyric (1903) and Apollo (1920) — into Broadway's largest theatre. Its first marquee name at the time of the 1998 reopening was Ford Center for the Performing Arts; the massive musical Ragtime was the opening show there.
It was later called the Hilton Theatre. In 2010, it became Foxwoods Theatre. Built for large-scale, splashy musicals, its tenants have included Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Mel Brooks' Young Frankenstein, the 2001 revival of 42nd Street and the 2000 revival of Jesus Christ Superstar, among other shows.
Jacqueline Peterson, a spokesperson for Live Nation, confirmed on Wednesday that sale information had been distributed by the real estate firm starting Dec. 5, adding, "While the Foxwoods Theatre is a beautiful theatre with rich history and a very promising future, the venue is ideally suited for Broadway theatrical performances, and most of our similarly situated venues have been sold or otherwise divested in previous transactions. We are exploring our options for this venue as part of our larger strategy of continuing to concentrate our focus and resources on our core business of live music performances and venues."
Foxwoods Worldwide's naming-rights expires on May 31, 2013, according to the executive summary distributed by Jones Lang LaSalle to a select group of "qualified investors." Playbill obtained a copy of the summary from an executive in the Broadway community.
Any sale is not expected to disrupt the life of Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, which is "expected to continue its robust performances for many years to come," according to the firm. The new owner would assume the license agreement for the show.
Offers will be accepted on a date to be determined.
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