September 19, 2011
In a strange coincidence, two British cinemas were victims of fires this past weekend, the Savoy Cinema in Kettering and the Essoldo Kings Heath. While the Savoy’s fire is suspected to be from an arson attack, the cause of the Kings Heath cinema’s fire is still unclear.
July 27, 2011
July 1, 2011
May 31, 2011
April 19, 2011
DAYTON, OH — Without ceremony, or any public announcement, demolition of the former Page Manor Twin Cinema (Page Cinema Arts Theatre) located in the Riverside section of Dayton, began on Monday the 11th of April. Tearful onlookers shared childhood memories of The Page as bulldozers started razing the theatre that had served the area since the early 1970’s. Opened originally as a single screen by Century Theatres, the property was taken over by Chakeres Theatres of Ohio and Kentucky who operated The Page as a twin cinema for several years. As a first run theatre, The Page was a popular venue for the area near Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and the Air Force Museum. Several owners operated the theatre following Chakeres' exit and The Page remained a popular sub-run and eventually bargain venue. The Page Twin closed and remained dark for several years.
In 2009 Nouveau Cinema Group, Inc., NCGI, a Dayton-based, 501 c 3, non-profit Corporation, expressed interest in renovating and reopening the long-shuttered venue as a reperatory, classic film and live venue. The cinema was renamed The Page Cinema Arts Theatres and met with great public and community support. NCGI’s plans were curtailed when it was discovered that one of the groups founders had used the majority of funds raised for his personal use. The case is currently being handled by the Montgomery County Prosecutors office.
March 30, 2011
CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND — Three Christchurch cinemas were demolished in March 2011 as a result of the September 11/February 22 earthquake. They are the:–
Joyland/Princess cinema, New Brighton. Opened in 1918 abd closed 1946. It had a seating capacity of 500.
Harbour Lights Cinema, Lyttleton. Opened March 20,1917, closed 1979-1985. Seating capacity was 575.
February 3, 2011
LAKE CHARLES, LA — When it opened in 1970, the Charles Theatre, later the Charles I-II-II, was a model of modern suburban single screen theater design. It closed in 2006 after it survived a battering by Hurricane Katrina and a subsequent tornado, ending its movie exhibition days as a discount house. It will soon only be a memory, as demolition preparations are underway.
It’s a landmark that brings back memories for many if not most long time residents of Lake Charles— the Charles Cinema. When it was first built it was what local preservationist AdleyCormier calls the “first suburban style movie house” and an early version of a multi-plex movie house with three screens showing three different movies at one time.
A story with video is here.
December 30, 2010
TOLEDO, OH — Once a prestige first-run and 70mm Cinerama house, the Showcase Toledo has been leveled. The theater was closed in 2005 by National Amusements. It originally opened as twin in 1964 and ended its days as a five-plex.
In fact, Waniewski says water leaks inside of the building left it in bad shape. He also says the theater’s seats had been damaged and that repairs would have been too costly for the building that just wasn’t selling.
The price tag has dropped from more than $7 million to around $3 million and a potential investor pulled out within the last year.
The story with a demolition video is here.
December 22, 2010
WOODSTOCK, ONTARIO, CANADA — The Capitol Theatre opened in 1908 as the Woodstock Opera House, has been demolished as demanded by the city last June when the structure’s roof collapsed. It was long operated by Famous Players and closed in 1999.
The Capitol, with its gold and burgundy carpeting, was where I worked as a teen in the ‘70s, where I met my future wife – she a cashier of some skill, me a red-coated usher, flashlight tucked neatly into my inner (ripped) pocket.
Then-owner Tom Naylor used to pull up in front of the theatre on packed Friday nights, parking his car Batman-style in a No Parking zone, an acknowledged, flashy perk for the only theatre owner in a small city.
The full reminiscence, with a picture, appeared here.
November 1, 2010
HATTIESBURG, MS — A fire early in the morning of October 30 destroyed the Beverly Drive-in. The theater had been closed since 2005, but there were hopes it might eventually reopen. The Beverly originally opened in 1948 and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Only two operating drive-ins remain in Mississippi.
A fire that started around 3 a.m. reduced the historic landmark to nothing but a smoldering memory. Hattiesburg firefighters gained control of the blaze by 4:15 a.m., but by then only the screen’s metal framework remained. The cause of the blaze is not known.
The story, with a picture, is in the Clarion-Register.