September 30, 2008
PHILADELPHIA, PA — Neigbhorhood residents are concerned about plans to restore and reopen Philadelphia’s Jumbo Theatre.
“The community hasn’t been given enough say in all of this,” the legislator said later. “They’ve got some serious concerns that need addressing.”
Among those concerns, residents say, are issues of parking, noise, capacity and late-night drunkenness.
“The venue could become a virtual nightclub, with people staying and drinking after the shows and then spilling out at 2 a.m. when they’re drunk and rowdy,” said Manny Citron, director of the neighborhood advisory committee of the New Kensington Community Development Corp.
Read the full article in the Philadelphia Daily News.
September 18, 2008
KNOXVILLE, TN — Regal Entertainment Group (NYSE: RGC), a leading motion picture exhibitor owning and operating the largest theatre circuit in the United States, today announced remodeling plans for Regal Cinemas in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Construction is expected to begin in the fourth quarter and is scheduled to be complete by the summer of 2009. The theatre will remain open continuously throughout the process.
“Regal will proudly offer moviegoers in Fredericksburg a complete state-of-the-art moviegoing experience in time for next year’s summer movie season. The box office, lobby, concession stand and every auditorium will be remodeled through our comprehensive construction plan,” stated Dick Westerling, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Advertising for Regal Entertainment Group. “Our Fredericksburg theatre is in a terrific location along the strong Plank Road retail corridor and with easy access off of I-95. We are confident that moviegoers will be impressed by this cinema once the extensive remodel is complete.”
Digital projection will provide picture-perfect presentations on every screen. The new and improved theatre will be called Regal Cinemas Fredericksburg Stadium 14 after combining two of the existing 15 auditoriums into a larger one. The cinema will offer a variety of films, 3D presentations and alternative digital programming with the convenience of 14 different showtimes. The free-standing building is surrounded by a convenient parking field which begins as close as the theatre’s front door.
September 16, 2008
BAY CITY, MI — The new digital marquee for the State Theatre was unveiled Thursday during the annual Taste & Theatrics event.
The $220,000 Mayan inspired marquee has painted panels on either side of the marquee that mirror the murals over the stage inside.
The marquee is the latest project in a multi-phase endeavor to renovate the State, according to Mike Bacigalupo, executive director of the theater. Renovations began in 2000 and more than $2 million has been spent on items such as a new roof, carpet, refinishing hardwood floors, stage curtains, sound and lighting, updated electric, and now the marquee. Much of the money has come from donations from the community.
Read more in the Bay City Times.
September 12, 2008
SAN FRANCISCO, CA — After a brief stint out of commission for renovations, the Warfield Theatre is reopening tomorrow with George Lopez as the headliner.
San Francisco’s baroque Warfield Theatre, a 1922 vaudeville and movie house that became a prime venue for Louis Armstrong, Bob Dylan, the Grateful Dead and countless other performers, was looking a little shabby when it closed in May after the lease changed hands. But the Market Street rock palace has a fresh glow after a four-month renovation that spruced up the ornate interior and installed permanent new lighting and sound systems.
Run for 30 years by Bill Graham Presents, then Live Nation, the Warfield, which reopens Saturday night with a show by comedian George Lopez, is now managed by Goldenvoice, a wing of the giant Anschutz Entertainment Group (billionaire Chairman Philip Anschutz owns the San Francisco Examiner). Among the changes: The mixing console has been moved downstairs from the front of the balcony, making space for 30 more prime reserved seats, the lobby walls were painted a deep blue to match the new carpets and the brass chandeliers got a polish.
Read the full story in the San Francisco Chronicle.
September 10, 2008
PHILADELPHIA, PA — A local developer says he has a deal in place to buy the Boyd Theatre and plans to make it the centerpiece of a $95 million hotel and entertainment complex. Hal Wheeler of ARCWheeler expects to close the deal with current owner Live Nation by November 25, and intends to build a 30-story, 250-room hotel to the west of the theater.
Live Nation would book live entertainment into the theater about 60 nights a year, leaving it available for other events the rest of the time. Broadway-type plays would not be part of the plan, as the hotel would be built on land that was to be the site of a stage house for the Boyd under a previous proposal.
Wheeler’s development proposal, like Live Nation’s earlier plan to turn the Boyd into a Broadway roadhouse, would restore the theater to its original art deco glamour. But the project’s scope is far more ambitious, and aims to transform the 1900 block of Chestnut Street from a retail backwater into a Center City nightlife destination.
Read the full story in the Philadelphia Inquirer .
September 9, 2008
KANSAS CITY, MO — Back and better than ever, the Midland Theatre returns this week after an expansive overhaul.
The historic Midland Theatre should be rocking Tuesday with Melissa Etheridge after a two-year hiatus, but its backers are just as excited with what’s happening offstage.
That is because the 80-year-old former movie palace at 13th and Main streets has picked up some new flexibility after a $28 million overhaul.
Yes, the stage will boast much-improved lighting and sound equipment, but the ornate interior has been tweaked as well to accommodate a variety of private events such as fundraisers, parties and banquets.
Read the full story in the Kansas City Star.
(Thanks to dsjeffries for providing the photo.)
September 4, 2008
Jason Roberts was born in 1974, more than a decade after President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas. But as an indie pop musician who has lived in Oak Cliff for eight years, he understands the importance of preserving history, especially the Texas Theatre, where Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested.
“This almost seems like ground zero,” says Mr. Roberts, the chair-elect of the Oak Cliff Foundation, which is charged with an almost-Herculean task: restoring the theater to its condition in 1963, when Oswald was cornered near the back of the theater during a showing of the Audie Murphy movie, War Is Hell.
Read more in the Dallas Morning News.
(Thanks to Whatknot for providing the photo.)
August 29, 2008
DENVER, CO — Recently, Regal added stadium seating to the main large D-150 screen auditorium of the Continental Theatre in Denver. I am curious. Has anyone been there since the conversion? I am interested in your views and opinions about the conversion.
I was just wondering how the stadium concept fits into this type of auditorium. Did they ruin it? Also Regal does not list on their web site what particular movie is playing in that auditorium. (Go figure!)
August 27, 2008
August 25, 2008
BROOKLYN, NY — The Brooklyn Paramount first opened its doors in November 1928. It continued in operation until August 1962 when then owners, The Long Island University, converted the lobby of the theatre into a student cafeteria and portions of the auditorium into a gym. Now, forty six years later the University has opened its new athletic center and announced the Paramount will once again be used as theatre space.
The grand lobby, a copy of the famous Hall of Mirrors in Versailles, the sunburst proscenium, the side bays representing visions into the formal gardens of French royal palaces of the late 18th century, and the ornate ceiling are still visible. The “Mighty Wurlitzer” pipe organ, second in size and sound only to the two in the Radio City Music Hall, has been lovingly restored by the Theatre Organ Enthusiasts group.
An article on the return of the Brooklyn Paramount can be found at the Brooklyn Eagle website along with a small photo of the auditorium during its 1962 conversion to a gym.