June 16, 2008
RIDGEFIELD PARK, NJ — Here’s a touching account of the final night screening of “Cinema Paradiso” at the closing night of the Rialto Theatre.
Then, as my car slowed in anticipation of a traffic light, I could see the letters — those six red letters, evenly separated and against a yellow backdrop, which brought back the memories like a biblical flood.
As I passed the movie theater that has forever influenced my life, I could see the title of the movie I had come to see up on the marquee: “Cinema Paradiso,” an Italian fable about the magic of movies and the lasting presence of friendship.
Read the full story at The Leader.
May 30, 2008
WATSONVILLE, CA — The Historic Fox Theatre of Watsonville is back and alive and reopened!!! We just wanted to let you know. We had our grand re-opening May 1st with “Iron Man” and it was a success. It is open and alive.
Address is 15 Maple Street, Watsonville, CA 95076 The phone number for movie times is 831 761-8200. The web site is www.foxtheatre3.com
May 28, 2008
May 23, 2008
NORTH KANSAS CITY, MO — North Kansas City’s old Armour Theatre (a.k.a. Centre and Paradise) reopens this Friday with the new Indiana Jones.
In its heyday, the 80-year-old Armour Theatre was the mainstay of entertainment for residents north of the Missouri River.
Nestled in the heart of North Kansas City’s retail corridor at 408 Armour Road, it was one of the area’s last single-screen neighborhood movie houses before going dark in the 1980s.
Now the structure that local movie theater owner Butch Rigby bought for $600,000 last summer has been restored and will reopen this week as the Screenland Armour.
The Kansas City Star article can be read here.
May 12, 2008
SYCAMORE, IL — The State Street Theater reopened after renovations to update it while still maintiang its classic charm.
Sycamore’s State Theatre, 420 W. State St., has recently undergone some major renovations.
The theater reopened Friday with the release of “Iron Man” after being closed for two weeks due to renovations.
The improvements include new, handicap-accessible bathrooms, full remodeling of the lobby and new computer systems that accept debit and credit cards.
Read the full story in the Northern Star.
May 5, 2008
SAN FRANCISCO, CA — It’s sort of a cross between a reincarnation and a re-opening, but there’s once again a functioning Marina Theater in San Francisco on Chestnut Street. This San Francisco Chronicle article describes the fight to save the theater space and keep it as a cinema, although only a portion of the exterior appears to be what remains of the original theater.
The Marina, 2149 Chestnut St., originally opened in 1928 – to see what it looked like in April 1956, check out the big black-and-white photo of it at Bechelli’s ‘50s-style diner next door to the Presidio – and eventually became the Cinema 21 in the 1960s and was bought by Century Cinemas. The theater seemed doomed when Century joined United Artists, Regal Cinemas and other corporations in dumping their single-screen neighborhood movie houses to focus on multiplexes.
Walgreens wanted the space, but met opposition from a Marina neighborhood association, Chestnut Street merchants and the San Francisco Neighborhood Theater Foundation headed by San Francisco Giants executives Alfonso Felder and Jack Bair. By 2004, a compromise was worked out between Walgreens, the community groups and property owner Ray Kaliski. The drugstore chain agreed to give up half of the building, and the rest would become the theater.
May 1, 2008
BURTON, MI and FLINT, MI — Both remaining drive-in theaters in the Flint, Michigan area are open this year. The US 23 Twin Drive-in Theatre just south of Flint will open for the season on May 2. It has been owned by the Warrington family since it first opened in 1951.
The Miracle Twin Drive-in Theatre, one of the last two remaining drive-in theaters operated by National Amusements, opened for the season on April 25. The other drive-in National Amusements still operates is the Kenwood Drive-in Theatre in Louisville, KY.
April 29, 2008
WATSONVILLE, CA — The 1923 Fox Theatre is set to reopen in Watsonville, CA.
This budget Landsburg-designed theatre has been closed since April 1, 2005.
After nearly three years of dark screens, the historic Fox Theatre marquee is lighting up again this week to announce a blockbuster, a children’s matinee and an independent film.
“It’s a good thing for downtown Watsonville,” said Ivan Chable, general manager of the Fox Theatre, who personally scrubbed many of the 600 upholstered seats to prepare the 85-year-old theater for its reopening and hired the new staff. “The people in Watsonville don’t have too many choices where to go and have some fun.”
Here is the full article from the Monterey County Herald.
April 28, 2008
ST. LOUIS, MO — Landmark Theatres is not renewing their lease on the Hi-Pointe Theatre, thus leaving the single-screen owners in search of a new company to run the theatre.
“Gone fishin'. See you soon,” says the marquee of the otherwise-empty Hi-Pointe Theatre.
But just how long the one-screen theater at 1005 McCausland Ave. stays dark is anybody’s guess.
Landmark Chief Executive Officer Ted Mundorff said the company decided not to renew its lease with building owners George W. and Georgia L. James because of a national trend against one-screen theaters.
Read more in the West County Journal.
(Thanks to Arbitrary.Marks for providing the photo.)
BARKHAMSTED, CT — The Pleasant Valley Drive-In re-opened April 25 for yet another season! The one-screen, 300-car theater is nestled just off State RT 44 between Harford and Winsted in Litchfield County, Connecticut. This drive-In always features two movies, most of which are first-run or recently released. For the first double-featured, the Pleasant Valley Drive-In is showing “Nims Island” and “Vantage Point”.