A night at the Parkway
posted by Michael Zoldessy on July 10, 2007 at 7:55 am
CHICAGO, IL — Scott Marks shares some memories of his days working at the Parkway Theatre.
The Parkway was a grind house in the purest sense of the term. Located at Clark & Diversey in Chicago, the theatre never took an intermission break going from Feature 1 to trailers to Feature 2 to trailers, etc.
For years, the Parkway wallowed in Grade Z material, but late in 1979, the Landmark chain purchased the joint and turned it into a revival house. I managed the place for a couple years in the early 80s, just before home video made its debut.
Read the full post along with an image of a schedule from the theatre on Empulsion Compulsion.
at the Parkway in 1982 I was bugging the manager to run a 2000 ft reel of my old 35mm trailers, and I must’ve made such a pest of myself because one night he did! I carried the silly reel in a brown paper bag under my arm and on a friday night when scheduled feature running times proved way off he slipped it in as I sat in the audience. The program features were triple-bill Robot Monster, Attack of the Killer Tomatoes, and Plan 9 From Outer Space and the manager told me Killer Tomatoes actual running time was so short it left them with a ½+ hr gap. My trailer reel was a ridiculous mix of grade Z horror fare like Something Weird, Horrors of Spider Island, Astro Zombies, Swamp Virgin, etc specially prepared for bad laughs. The manager prefaced the reel with an annoucement of a ‘special treat’ but that none of these films were planned to play at the Parkway. It brought down the house, and I imagine the projectionist there thought it positively insane to run any film that just walked in off the street by a paying patron.