• February 14, 2007

    Lebowsky Center gutted by fire

    OWOSSO, MI — The Joseph H. Lebowsky Center, formerly the Capitol Theatre, was gutted by a fire late Tuesday, February 13.

    A historic theater in Owosso is gutted by fire. Firefighters from 12 departments are still on the scene battling that fire. It’s burning the Joseph H. Lebowsky Center. Fire officials say it started Tuesday night just before 11.

    Community members who were on the scene say, if the fire destroy’s the historic center, it’ll be a huge loss for the area.

    For more news coverage, go to WLNS which has a Javascript video link at the main page of the website. News coverage from WJRT including a video link can be found here: WJRT Video Update.

    Additional stories have since been printed in the Flint Journal and Owosso Argus-Press. The official website has yet to be updated.

  • Unique Theater in risk of collapse

    SALIDA, CO — Here is an article about the Unique Theater which is now in immediate danger of collapse:

    Under the threat of “imminent danger” that Unique Theater may collapse, Salida Fire Chief Don Taylor Thursday recommended a number of F Street and First Street businesses not allow people inside until it can be stabilized.

    The 118-year-old building at 129 W. First St. has been under scrutiny by Salida officials since August when a routine fire inspection and subsequent building inspection exposed problems with structural integrity of the building.

    For the full piece, go to the Mountain Mail.

  • February 13, 2007

    New Owner for Pomona Fox Theater

    POMONA, CA — A 1931 Clifford Balch-designed art deco palace, the Pomona Fox Theater, has been sold by the City of Pomona to a partnership of local developers who have renovated other buildings in the city’s old downtown. The city council voted unanimously to sell the theatre to Gerald Investments Incorporated for $1.6 million.

    Company representative Jerry Tessier says that work on the theater will begin within three months, and will take about nine months to complete. He hopes to have the theater opened by the end of January, 2008, so it can host the Smogdance Film Festival, a local event which left Pomona for nearby Claremont last year.

  • February 7, 2007

    Heritage Status given to National Cinema

    HULL, ENGLAND — The former National Picture Theatre in Hull has just been listed as a building of special historic importance by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport. The theatre has remained as a ruin since it was bombed in March 1941, destroying all but the facade of the 1914 bult cinema on Beverley Road. Ironically, the film being shown on that night was Charlin Chaplin in The Great Dictator.

    It is hoped that the ruin will now be conserved and the former site of the auditorium opened up as a public space, it has been boarded up and unused since 1941.

    For more, go to the BBC News.

  • February 6, 2007

    Bank forecloses on Castle theater

    BLOOMINGTON, IL — The owner of the Castle Theatre owes Heartland Bank $793,299. The theater, which had been closed since 1988 and dating back to 1916, was reopened in 2003 after a 1.5 million dollar renovation.

    Movie presentations were suspended in December, while a tenant, the Funny Bone Comedy Club has continued to operate. Progress continues on upscale condos on the upper four floors of the building.

    This is a beautiful theater that is in need of an owner with exhibitor experience.

  • February 2, 2007

    State/Fox Theater being revived

  • January 31, 2007

    Theater text message service

    We just engineered something that we think cinema owners will love. And it’s FREE! In short you can send a text message to anyone on your list with just the click of a button.

    You’ll be able to tell people exactly what’s playing, specials, etc just a couple of hours before a show- they get the text message wherever they are right then and make instant plans to come to your theater! It also serves as an email list for those who don’t have one- send out emails to whoever is on your list.

    If you want to know more (including the editors!) please . I can set you up with a username and password. The URL is:Promobird

  • January 15, 2007

    The State Theatre reaches impasse

    BENTON HARBOR, MI — Sorry to all of our friends in the St. Joe and Benton Harbor area, but after 15 months of working on the theater, restoring the lobby, projector and screen, we were unable to work out a lease agreement with the very difficult owners of the State Theatre.

    We basically had to dismantle all of our good work and the theater is in fairly good condition, with the exception of the roof that is expected to collapse in less than 15 months (according to 3 roofing experts we met with over the last year).

    It seats over 400 people and has a very large 17x34' screen. It was built in 1942 and our 3 year restoration plan has been rejected for completely unknown reasons. The rumors we have heard from the owners (the very little communication we have had over our time there) is that they are either going to mothball the theater (which in my opinion will destroy the theater in less than 2 years) or try to lease it for some ungodly amount.

  • January 12, 2007

    Berkeley Plaza Theatre could reopen in February

    MARTINSBURG, WV — After a devastating fire that practically destroyed it the Berkeley Plaza Theatre could be back next month.

    Elliott said only five of the seven auditoriums, each outfitted with new screens and curtains, initially will be opened for movie showings. The remaining two need more work because they received the most damage, but he plans to eventually reopen them.

    “I want to have a special grand opening,” Elliott said. “We’re going to work something up.”

    He also wants to see the multiplex reopen for the patrons who appreciate the affordable movie tickets — $3 for afternoon matinees, and $5 for evening screenings.

    To read more, go to the Herald-Mail.

    Thanks to Bloo for providing the story.

  • January 10, 2007

    Castle Theatre closes in Bloomington, Illinois

    BLOOMINGTON, IL — On 1/3/07, the Castle Theater owner Ben Slotky confirmed that his venue had closed, though a church will continue to offer Sunday services there. He refused to say if the theater, located at 209 E. Washington St., would be put up for sale or…if he planned to reopen it in the future, or if he would continue with previously announced plans for a downtown restaurant called “Your Mother’s,” although plans for the restaurant had been put on temporary hold for financial reasons.

    Bank lenders claimed they had not foreclosed on the Castle nor taken over ownership. Slotky reportedly will continue his development of the Castle’s upper floors into condominiums. Slotky co-owns that space with downtown developer Fred Wollrab. Wollrab, who owns many downtown buildings, predicted this week that someone would purchase and operate the Castle if Slotky sells or if the bank forecloses, because the theater is in such good shape.

    The downtown Castle had closed in 1988 but reopened in 2003 after a $1.5 million renovation. The City of Bloomington gave the Castle at least $315,000 in grants to help Slotky with renovations.