“2001: A Space Odyssey” 45th Anniversary – The Cinerama Engagements

posted by Michael Zoldessy on April 2, 2013 at 11:00 am

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“2001: A Space Odyssey” 45th Anniversary
The Cinerama Engagements

Compiled by Michael Coate

Presented here in commemoration of the 45th anniversary of the release of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey is a list of the science-fiction classic’s Cinerama-promoted roadshow engagements in the United States and Canada, which offers an opportunity to honor some once-glorious movie theaters. These engagements of 2001 were shown exclusively in major cities prior to the film being given a traditional nationwide release and included reserved seating with an advanced admission price and an average of only ten scheduled showings per week. And, as with most roadshows, these original presentations included an overture, intermission, entr’acte and exit music. As well, souvenir programs were sold.

The list that follows focuses on the roadshow engagements of 2001 that had reserved seating and were promoted as a “Cinerama” presentation (in this case, a 70-millimeter print featuring six-track stereophonic sound projected onto a large, deeply-curved screen with the Cinerama brand touted in the film’s credits and in newspaper advertising).

Although not included on the list, it should be mentioned that there were roadshow engagements of 2001 in several cities lacking a Cinerama-branded theater, and these presentations were promoted as “70mm” (Austin, Raleigh, San Antonio, etc.), “Dimension 150” (Little Rock), “Vistarama” (Memphis), or, in some cases, no format at all, suggesting a 35mm presentation. Within a few months of its release, some theaters (not included on the list) started booking the film as a “modified roadshow” whereby the reserved-seating policy was relaxed, but maintained were the exclusivity, advanced pricing, scheduled showtimes, and, in some cases, the 70mm presentation. By early 1969, most new engagements of the film were of the general-release type (continuous performances, popular prices, 35mm, no overture, etc.).

This article/list was created as historical record of a famous motion picture, but also is a celebration of the (mostly) now-closed and fondly-remembered “Cinema Treasures” in which it played. The bookings are arranged chronologically by premiere date, and duration data, measured in weeks, has been included for most of the entries.

04.02.1968 … Washington, DC – Uptown [52 weeks]
04.03.1968 … New York, NY – Capitol [24 weeks]
04.04.1968 … Los Angeles, CA – Warner Hollywood [80 weeks]
04.10.1968 … Boston, MA – Boston [36 weeks]
04.10.1968 … Denver, CO – Cooper [47 weeks]
04.10.1968 … Detroit, MI – Summit [47 weeks]
04.10.1968 … Houston, TX – Windsor [31 weeks]
04.11.1968 … Chicago, IL – Cinestage [36 weeks]

05.22.1968 … Philadelphia, PA – Randolph [30 weeks]
05.28.1968 … San Diego, CA – Center [44 weeks]
05.28.1968 … Seattle, WA – Cinerama [77 weeks]
05.29.1968 … Atlanta, GA – Martin Cinerama [22 weeks]
05.29.1968 … Baltimore, MD – Town [20 weeks]
05.29.1968 … Cincinnati, OH – International 70 [19 weeks]
05.29.1968 … Dallas, TX – Capri [24 weeks]
05.29.1968 … Miami Beach, FL – Sheridan [23 weeks]
05.29.1968 … Montreal, QC – Imperial [24 weeks]
05.29.1968 … New Orleans, LA – Cinerama [29 weeks]
05.29.1968 … Providence, RI – Cinerama [20 weeks]
05.29.1968 … St. Louis, MO – Cinerama [29 weeks]
05.29.1968 … Phoenix (Scottsdale), AZ – Kachina [25 weeks]
05.30.1968 … Toronto, ON – Glendale [127 weeks]

06.06.1968 … Charlotte, NC – Carolina [13 weeks]
06.07.1968 … Honolulu, HI – Cinerama [29 weeks]
06.12.1968 … Birmingham, AL – Eastwood Mall [8 weeks]
06.12.1968 … Columbus, OH – Grand [27 weeks]
06.12.1968 … Dayton, OH – Dabel [20 weeks]
06.12.1968 … Harrisburg, PA – Trans-Lux
06.12.1968 … Jacksonville, FL – 5 Points [14 weeks]
06.12.1968 … Kansas City, MO – Empire 2 [27 weeks]
06.12.1968 … Pittsburgh, PA – Warner [22 weeks]
06.12.1968 … Salt Lake City, UT – Villa [22 weeks]
06.12.1968 … Tampa, FL – Palace [15 weeks]
06.12.1968 … Toledo, OH – Showcase 1 [14 weeks]
06.13.1968 … Portland, OR – Hollywood [42 weeks]
06.19.1968 … Buffalo, NY – Century [13 weeks]
06.19.1968 … Cleveland, OH – State [21 weeks]
06.19.1968 … Hartford, CT – Cinerama [26 weeks]
06.19.1968 … Norfolk, VA – Rosna [25 weeks]
06.19.1968 … Omaha, NE – Indian Hills [17 weeks]
06.19.1968 … San Francisco, CA – Golden Gate [73 weeks]
06.19.1968 … Wichita, KS – Uptown [15 weeks]
06.26.1968 … Calgary, AB – North Hill [14 weeks]
06.26.1968 … Des Moines, IA – River Hills [20 weeks]
06.26.1968 … Fresno, CA – Warnor [17 weeks]
06.26.1968 … Hicksville, NY – Twin South [39 weeks]
06.26.1968 … London, ON – Park [8 weeks]
06.26.1968 … Louisville, KY – Showcase 1 [14 weeks]
06.26.1968 … Milwaukee, WI – Cinema 1 [25 weeks]
06.26.1968 … Minneapolis (St. Louis Park), MN – Cooper [31 weeks]
06.26.1968 … Sacramento, CA – Esquire [35 weeks]
06.26.1968 … Syracuse, NY – Eckel [10 weeks]
06.26.1968 … Tulsa, OK – Fox [15 weeks]
06.26.1968 … Vancouver, BC – Capitol [15 weeks]
06.27.1968 … Indianapolis, IN – Indiana [20 weeks]
06.27.1968 … Nashville, TN – Belle Meade
06.28.1968 … Huntsville, AL – Westbury [9 weeks]

07.02.1968 … Las Vegas, NV – Cinerama [15 weeks]
07.10.1968 … Chattanooga, TN – Brainerd
07.16.1968 … Oklahoma City, OK – Cooper [33 weeks]
07.17.1968 … Montclair, NJ – Clairidge [36 weeks]
07.23.1968 … San Jose, CA – Century 21 [87 weeks]
07.24.1968 … Knoxville, TN – Capri-70
07.31.1968 … Springfield (West Springfield), MA – Showcase 1 [12 weeks]

08.09.1968 … Orlando, FL – Beacham [11 weeks]
08.21.1968 … Akron (Cuyahoga Falls), OH – Falls [17 weeks]
08.28.1968 … Lawrence, MA – Showcase 1 [12 weeks]

09.04.1968 … Reno, NV – Century 21 [9 weeks]
09.16.1968 … New York, NY – Cinerama [cont. from Capitol, 13 (37) weeks]
09.18.1968 … Worcester, MA – Showcase 2 [13 weeks]

10.02.1968 … Albuquerque, NM – Fox Winrock [13 weeks]
10.17.1968 … Rochester (Penfield), NY – Panorama [17 weeks]
10.30.1968 … Fargo, ND – Cinema 70 [5 weeks]
10.30.1968 … Moline (Milan), IL – Showcase 1 [7 weeks]

09.30.1969 … Oakland, CA – Century 21 [11 weeks]

10.14.1969 … Orange, CA – Cinedome 21 [27 weeks]

The first domestic roadshow booking of 2001: A Space Odyssey not promoted as a Cinerama presentation was held at the Broadmoor in Shreveport, Louisiana, where it began July 11, 1968, and ran 8 weeks.

The first international roadshow bookings of 2001: A Space Odyssey commenced April 10, 1968, in Japan, at the O.S. Cinerama in Osaka and the Theatre Tokyo in Tokyo.

The domestic general release of 2001: A Space Odyssey began in autumn 1968.

References: This article was compiled by referencing regional newspaper promotion and various articles in Boxoffice and Variety.

Image: The Washington Post; April 2, 1968.

Special Thanks: Al Alvarez, Jim Barg, Evans A. Criswell, Nick DiMaggio, William Hooper, Bill Huelbig, Mark Huffstetler, Bill Kretzel, Mark Lensenmayer, Paul Linfesty, Stan Malone, Gabriel Neeb, Jim Perry, Sam Shapiro, Grant Smith, Bob Throop, Joel Weide, Vince Young, and the librarians who helped with research for this project.

Comments (11)

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on April 2, 2013 at 3:09 pm

This New York Daily News review from April 4, 1968 taught me a great lesson at the age of 13: movie critics' opinions are no more valid than my own. I’d have to see the movie for myself. About two months later, I did, and it’s still my all-time favorite. But I have to admit I was seriously hoping for a 4-star review in the Daily News that day.

MPol
MPol on April 2, 2013 at 9:25 pm

I saw 2001: A Space Odyssey when it first came out, and at least afew times since. It’s a cool film, and certainly a good product of its time, like lots of many other great films of that general period.

ChasSmith
ChasSmith on April 2, 2013 at 9:47 pm

Thanks to a good friend who was way more aware than I about this new film, I saw it on several occasions at the State in Cleveland, once at the Summit in Detroit, and of course countless subsequent times in other venues over the years. The runs at the State and Summit were simply magnificent. I will never forget those experiences, or that incredible summer over which ‘2001’ loomed so large.

As always, thanks for the great research marking a notable anniversary and revitalizing some wonderful memories.

Nick DiMaggio
Nick DiMaggio on April 2, 2013 at 11:30 pm

Several have said “2001” was a life changing experience for them but for me it’s been a lifelong love affair. I first saw “2001” at a Thursday matinee showing the day following the opening at the Palace in Tampa. From the start I was mesmerized by both the film and the music and I knew the audience and I were in for something truly extraordinary. I saw it again the following Saturday evening at a sold-out showing and many times since as well as purchasing the soundtrack album. Seeing the film in 70mm on a curved Cinerama screen is the only way to provide the viewer with the ultimate “2001” experience.

JSA
JSA on April 2, 2013 at 11:44 pm

Nothing like my all-time favorite film to get me back posting!

First time was at the Metro, San Juan, Puerto Rico in 1968. Latest viewing was at the Samuel Goldwyn, LA, in celebration of the 40th anniversary. In between, a few times at the Cinerama Dome, and one at Cal State Long Beach. All in 70 mm.

The visual, intellectual and sonic impact of this film are, personally, beyond description. After a 25+ year engineering career in the aerospace business, it is still a source of inspiration and hope. Would like to mention Wally Weevers, Douglas Trumbull, Con Pederson, Ray Lovejoy and Geoffrey Unsworth, who crafted the imagination of Arthur C. Clarke and Stanley Kubrick.

JSA

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on April 3, 2013 at 12:28 am

Like Nick it became my favorite at age ten on the big screen at NATIONAL HILLS THEATRE in Augusta,70mm pretty sure for awhile at least it was reserved seating.781 seats.

neeb
neeb on April 3, 2013 at 12:50 am

I saw a P&S VHS on a 19" TV in 1993 and it blew my mind. It’s that good.

Whoman Jim
Whoman Jim on April 3, 2013 at 12:57 am

I helped Mr. Coate in regards to info on the Las Vegas Cinerama engagement(s) – there were 2 – the original First Run “Roadshow”, and the ‘74 re-release / re-issue.

Well Done, Mike!

JodarMovieFan
JodarMovieFan on April 4, 2013 at 11:00 am

The first time I saw ‘2001’ was, around 1980, at the then twinned Flower Theater, in Takoma Park MD, and 35mm MONO! The film still had its visual appeal and it was sci-fi, one of my favorite film genres. I still remember walking out at the end, an older kid saying he would not be seeing “THAT FILM” again, as he just didn’t get it.

When DC’s Uptown had a 70mm ‘virgin’ print around ‘90 or so, now that was something special. As they say, they don’t make em like they used to anymore.

In 2001, when they had another re-release, I took my friend, who absolutely hated it. I tried to tell him it was one of those thinking movies like K-Pax, which came out around that time. He absolutely hated it. Being brought up in the post-MTV generation, movies have to be under 100 minutes, with quick 3 second edits and something BIG happening every 20. No matter how I tried to explain it to him, how the pacing may be slow, its deliberate and for reason. He just doesn’t get it. It reminds me of that comment Rock Hudson allegedly made after seeing this movie..he didn’t get it either.

Its now a joke, between us, that when he gets me to see a movie I don’t want to see or end up not liking, that I will make him sit through and watch this again when it comes to town. Or, when talking about seeing a ‘new’ movie, I will tell him there’s a sequel…2061: The Next Odyssey and its 4 hours with two intermissions! :-D

GaryParks
GaryParks on April 5, 2013 at 12:44 am

I didn’t see the film until its re-release in 1974 or ‘75, at the Rio Theatre in Santa Cruz. I was in 6th grade, and went with my friend Scot. We were both into Star Trek and science fiction, and we were blown away by the visual appeal of the movie. We both were growing up in homes where Classical/symphonic/orchestral music was valued, so we loved the music as well as the visual aspect. We didn’t understand the latter part of the movie, but we talked about it for weeks afterward, trying to figure out the meaning. Until the coming of Star Wars, it was the most visually rich depiction of outer space and space technology I’d seen.

raysson
raysson on April 10, 2013 at 7:38 pm

70mm and 6 Track Stereophonic Sound in North Carolina:

RALEIGH: Ambassador

DURHAM: Center

GREENSBORO: Terrace

WINSTON-SALEM: Winston

Only Charlotte’s Carolina Theatre was the only theatre in the state that showed this in CINERAMA.

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