Remembering Cinerama (Part XI: Syracuse)

posted by Coate on November 14, 2008 at 10:00 am

REMEMBERING CINERAMA
Part XI: Syracuse

The following is Part Eleven in a series of retrospectives on Cinerama, the legendary motion picture process that kicked off the widescreen revolution. The series focuses on providing a market-by-market, film-by-film breakdown of when and where Cinerama and its multi-panel clones were exhibited. The easy-to-reference articles also serve to provide nostalgia to those who experienced the Cinerama presentations when they were new and to highlight the movie palaces in which the memorable events took place.

Part I: New York
Part II: Chicago
Part III: San Francisco
Part IV: Houston
Part V: Washington, D.C.
Part VI: Los Angeles
Part VII: Atlanta
Part VIII: San Diego
Part IX: Dallas
Part X: Oklahoma City

And now…Part XI: Cinerama Presentations in Syracuse!

THIS IS CINERAMA
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 08 January 1958
Engagement Duration: 17 weeks
Format: 3-Strip Cinerama
Promotional Hype: “Here’s the only entertainment that’s really ALL NEW…not just a big picture with scope but sensationally ALL NEW in camera, projector, screen, sound…even in a specially equipped theatre. At Cinerama, you’re lifted out of your theatre chair, moving breathlessly with the picture, surrounded by adventure, spectacle and grandeur such as you have never before experienced. Cannot and will not be shown in any other theatre in central New York state and will never be shown on TV!”

CINERAMA HOLIDAY
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 08 May 1958
Duration: 12 weeks
Format: 3-Strip Cinerama
Hype: “The New, The 2nd Cinerama Adventure. It’s Every Holiday You Ever Dreamed Of…Come True!”

SEVEN WONDERS OF THE WORLD
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 28 July 1958
Duration: 15 weeks
Format: 3-Strip Cinerama
Hype: “The New, The 3rd Cinerama Adventure. No vacation trip this year could possibly give the thrills of SEVEN WONDERS OF THE WORLD. This picture cannot and will not be shown in any other theatre between N.Y.C. and Cleveland.”

SEARCH FOR PARADISE
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 10 November 1958
Duration: 6 weeks
Format: 3-Strip Cinerama
Hype: “The one Cinerama experience you have to see…to believe”

SOUTH SEAS ADVENTURE
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 19 December 1958
Duration: 8 weeks
Format: 3-Strip Cinerama
Hype: “Order your tickets to the tropic splashed excitement of the South Seas…”

THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF THE BROTHERS GRIMM
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 29 August 1962
Duration: 10 weeks
Format: 3-Strip Cinerama
Hype: “The First Full-Length Dramatic Story In Cinerama With A Dazzling Array Of Stars In Fascinating Roles”

HOW THE WEST WAS WON
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 16 May 1963
Duration: 12 weeks
Format: 3-Strip Cinerama
Hype: “The Great Dramatic Motion Picture That Puts You In Every Scene!”

CIRCUS WORLD
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 30 September 1964
Duration: 4 weeks
Format: 70mm
Hype: “Cinerama Puts You in the Middle of the Most Action-Filled You’ve Ever Seen!”

BATTLE OF THE BULGE
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 05 January 1966
Duration: 9 weeks
Format: 70mm
Hype: “Finally The Super Action Show In Super Cinerama Hurling You Headlong Into The Sight And Might Of The Most Amazing Forces Ever Unleashed!”

THE BATTLE FOR KHARTOUM
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 10 August 1966
Duration: 5 weeks
Format: 70mm
Hype: “The Great Cinerama Adventure!”

GRAND PRIX
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 13 June 1967
Duration: 5 weeks
Format: 70mm
Hype: “Get Ready For The Ride Of Your Life In The Most Spellbinding Spectacle Your Eyes And Ears Will Ever Experience!”

2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 26 June 1968
Duration: 10 weeks
Format: 70mm
Hype: “An Epic Drama Of Adventure And Exploration!”

KRAKATOA, EAST OF JAVA
Theater: Eckel
Premiere: 13 August 1969
Duration: 4 weeks
Format: 70mm
Hype: “The New Cinerama Hurls You Into The Incredible Day That Shook The Earth To Its Core!”

NEVER SHOWN IN CINERAMA
WINDJAMMER
HOLIDAY IN SPAIN
THE BEST OF CINERAMA
IT’S A MAD MAD MAD MAD WORLD (35mm general release at Loew’s & Lakeshore Drive-In)
MEDITERRANEAN HOLIDAY (70mm CineVision presentation at Shoppingtown)
THE GREATEST STORY EVER TOLD (35mm reserved performance at Cinema North)
THE HALLELUJAH TRAIL (35mm general release at Loew’s & DeWitt Drive-In)
RUSSIAN ADVENTURE
CUSTER OF THE WEST
ICE STATION ZEBRA (35mm general release at Eckel & DeWitt Drive-In)

No details could be found for the 70mm 1973 re-issue of THIS IS CINERAMA.

Compiled by Michael Coate & Robert Throop

Source: Syracuse Herald-Journal, The Post-Standard and Variety

Comments (3)

muviebuf
muviebuf on November 15, 2008 at 8:35 am

The reason that “Mad World” and “Hallelujah Trail” did not play at the Eckel was the product split that then existed in downtown Syracuse. The UA product was divided 50% between Shine’s (who had the Eckel and the Paramount) with the other 50% to Lowes which had the State (now the Landmark) and the Capitol (which had closed in 1958). “Mad World” and “Trail” went to Lowes on the split.

It wasn’t too long after “Krakatoa” that the Eckel degenerated into running blaxploitation such as “Up Tight” and others of that era which hastened its demise.

MPol
MPol on November 16, 2008 at 6:30 am

I saw “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World”, ‘How the West was Won", and “2001: A Space Odyssey”, all during the times when they were popular, as an adolescent. The rest of the ones on the list, however, I was either too young to see, or not really able to deal with the subject matter of. The series of blaxploitation films took hold in our area as well, and, while I never thought about it, I think you’re right about their also having contributed to the demise of many of the various movie palaces, as well as the movie industry itself, which, imho, began its decline in earnest during the 1970’s, even though there were still some good films to be had.

RJT70mm
RJT70mm on November 19, 2008 at 1:04 pm

Jonathan,
Didn’t you mean to say that Loews had the State and Strand?

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