Air base theater to reopen

posted by danpetitpas on October 7, 2008 at 7:55 am

MISAWA AIR BASE, JAPAN — The base movie theater closed late last month and is currently undergoing renovations. Civil engineers are installing a new heating and air conditioning system and new seats in the Richard Bong Theater.

A grand opening is planned for November 26th, but Army and Air Force Exchange Service officials expect the theater to be opened before then.

Read more in Stars and Stripes.

Comments (3)

FreakGurl on October 7, 2008 at 11:31 am

I think we should open it back up! not only did we lose our theater but those people lost their jobs!!!

Simon Overton
Simon Overton on October 7, 2008 at 2:47 pm

When I was stationed at Oakland Army Base, California, 1965-65, I had a part-time job at the base cinema. Those were the days of single reel-to-reel projection -not this lazy platter system of today!

It would be interesting to find out WHO to contact for a detailed list of military base (past and present) cinemas/theaters -to post on C.T’s sight.

From those places I faithfully patronized (fifty-cents or so!!!) at Ft. Jackson, South Carolina., Ft. Sam Houston, Texas., Ft. Lewis, Tacoma, Washington., Presidio of San Francisco and Naval Station Treasure Island, they all seemed to have demure architecture except the Presidio’s beautiful Spanish theme.

JohnRice on October 7, 2008 at 5:16 pm

I have somewhat fond memories of the theaters on the Army bases where I was stationed during my 1959-1962 service years. Most of the stateside theaters were not much to look at on the outside (no marquees, just one sheet poster cases) but inside many had very nice interiors with stage and curtains, some even equipped for 4 channel mag sound. Projection and presentation was usually as good as the commercial theaters downtown. There were 5 program changes a week back then, all single features with either a newsreel, cartoon or a short and trailers preceding the feature. Oh yeah the admission price was only 25 cents…cheap even if most of us enlistees were only making $80-150 a month.

At Camp Kaiser in Korea in 1959-60 things weren’t quite as good, the 35mm post theater was a quonset hut and the Korean projectionist (probably on orders from the sergeant managing the theater) was always skipping the trailers and shorts so the staff could go home early. We didn’t even have TV at Kaiser (too far from the station at Seoul) so we valued even the missing newsreels to show us what was going on at home. The smaller theaters in the boondocks of Korea played films in 16mm rather than 35mm.

Returning to the USA in 1961 I was stationed at Fort Bliss Texas where we had two very nice post theaters. Unfortunately a few months after I arrived the bone headed post commander decreed that we had to wear uniforms or coats and ties to get our nightly 25 cents movie fix. Bummer! Most of us boycotted the post theaters from then on and went into El Paso to frequent the downtown houses (loved that Plaza!) or a carload of us got a couple of sixpacks and went to one of the many local drive ins. One of them (the Northpoint?) was 99 cents a carload, even cheaper per GI than on post!

Yeah those were the days…sort of!

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