Preservation Alert

  • February 3, 2004

    Astor Plaza to Close Soon?

    NEW YORK, NY — Cinema Treasures superfan William sent in this potentially tragic news about the Astor Plaza

    “Times Square will be losing another theatre later this year, when Loew’s Astor Plaza Theatre closes. Plans call for the theater to be turned into MTV studio space.

    The information came from the company that has a contract for servicing of projection equipment for the Loew’s company in the city. And most of the tenants on the ground floor at the 1515 Viacom building closed and moved out as of last week. Also the Loew’s State Theatre (4plex) in the Virgin Megastore is going to be dropped too.

    My office is just down the street and in the last week a lot of things have changed in that building. Because Viacom has MTV and Comedy Central, they want some more high profile studio space in Times Square."

  • February 2, 2004

    Save the Empress in Vallejo, CA

    VALLEJO, CA — A vote will be held by the Vallego City Council on Feb 10, 2004 to decide the fate of the Empress Theater, according to this detailed report in the Vallejo News.

  • January 5, 2004

    New Development Threatens West Virginia’s Grandest Theatrical Showcase

    HUNTINGTON, WV — The Keith-Albee, a Thomas Lamb designed movie palace, has operated continuously since the Depression. The theater still shows first run movies. In the 70s, it was delicately divided into a main auditorium and three small theaters.

  • Laurel Theatre Faces Demolition

    BRIDGETON, NJ — The Laurel Theatre, which has been closed for over 25 years, will most likely be demolished sometime in May, according to a report in the Philadelphia Inquirer.

    “It’s not in danger of falling down. It’s just a wreck,” said Ewing, who said he had been pushing the building’s demolition for years. “It’s an eyesore in the middle of town.”

  • December 17, 2003

    Ambassador Gets New Owner, Fate Remains Uncertain

    SALFORD, ENGLAND — The Ambassador Super Cinema has changed hands again, according to a report on ManchesterOnline.

    The new owner, McDermott Developments, a local real estate development company, had originally planned to demolish the theater and replace it with 31 apartments. However, these plans do not appear to be finalized.

    As Andrew Darbyshire, a McDermott developer, put it: “We bought it with the benefit of planning permission. But I do not want to say anything yet regarding our intentions. We don’t know what to do yet.”

  • December 15, 2003

    Regent Theatre to Close January 28

    ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA — According to a report in the Adelaide Advertiser, the Regent Theatre will close January 28, due to a dispute between the Hoyts theater chain and the building’s landlord, St. Peter’s College.

    The closure comes as a surprise to the Regent’s landlord, according to Paul Fielding, business director for St. Peters:

    “I still haven’t got their sign-off to withdraw from their tenancy,” he said. “But, in any case, it’s a sudden thing and we haven’t got our mind around what you do with a large empty space like that.”

  • December 5, 2003

    New Mission Theatre to be Destroyed?

    There should be news anytime now about the new owner of the New Mission Theatre. Reportedly the highest bidder wants to destroy it. I’ll be in touch.

  • December 1, 2003

    Von Lee Cinema to Reopen as a Restaurant/Bar?

    BLOOMINGTON, IN — According to a report in the Indiana Daily Student, a hearing will be held this coming Wednesday to determine the fate of the Von Lee Cinema. At question is whether or not the theater’s current owner should be granted a liquor license, which is required for the theater to become a restaurant and bar. Opponents of the plan — namely, the “Save The Von Lee” organization — argue that the Von Lee should remain a cinema.

  • November 24, 2003

    Pleasant Hill Officials Say Dome Is Out With The Old

    PLEASANT HILL, CA — Plans for a new retail/entertainment complex may mean the end of Pleasant Hill’s beloved dome theater. Now operated as an art house under Century Theatres' CineArts banner, the dome opened in 1967 and is a treasured local landmark. As Contra Costa Times reporter Corey Lyons reports, Century plans to replace the classic dome with a new “two-story theater with six screens, an escalator and lobbies that offer expansive views of the area.”

  • November 12, 2003

    More Info on the Avenal Theatre Fire

    AVENAL, CA — The Fresno Bee has more information about the fallout from Saturday’s fire at the Avenal Theatre. According to the article, the fire damaged and/or destroyed a total of eight businesses in the downtown Avenal area, totalling at least $1 million in damage. [uPDATE: another report from local TV station indicates that Avenal city leaders have voted to rebuild the theater.]