If you’ve driven by the Casa Linda Theater’s marquee lately, you’re probably wondering why the movie Mighty Joe Young is still playing in our neighborhood months and months after its opening (and fairly quick closing) everywhere else in America.

The answer, as you probably know, is that the theater closed shortly after premiering the movie, and it has been vacant ever since.

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So what’s up with the building now?

“We’ve had lots of interest in the property,” says listing broker John Levinski with Cushman & Wakefield.

“At first, we thought it would eventually be turned into more retail space. But things change, and here’s where we are today.”

A local group has the theater property under contract while considering plans to turn the building into a “Granada-type dinner theater,” Levinski says. He didn’t want to identify the group or hazard a guess about when their feasibility would be complete, other than to say it could be “quite a few months.”

Interestingly enough, the theater isn’t part of the surrounding shopping center property. Instead, Levinski says, it’s separately owned by the estate of the late Gordon McLendon, a Dallas radio pioneer.

Levinski says the theater’s equipment mostly left with operator Rich Petersen (Petersen was basically forced out of the property after his lease expired), but many of the theater seats remain.

Petersen couldn’t be reached for comment, but considering the apparently low demand for retail conversion of the property, McLendon’s estate might as well have let Petersen hang around a bit longer.

The former JoJo’s restaurant at Northwest Highway and Jupiter could be heating up meals again someday soon.

According to a real estate source, the brothers who own the nearby Chubby’s and Chubby Cat restaurants offered to purchase the property from Denny’s (which purchased all of JoJo’s assets) a number of months ago, but at the time, their offer was put on hold.

Now, according to the real estate source, the brothers are back with a lower offer, which has prompted Denny’s to wonder what happened to the property’s original value.

One of the brothers, when contacted by telephone, flat-out denied having made any offers on the former JoJo’s building and said they weren’t, had never been, and never would be interested in the property.

So there you have it.

Let us know if you have questions or comments about neighborhood real estate deals – what’s happening with vacant land or empty buildings, or who’s planning to move locations or shut doors.

Awhile back, neighborhood Realtor Missy Vanderbilt suggested we cover this information in a column, and from time to time (as information becomes available), we’ll see what we can do.