• May 29, 2008

    Los Angeles Times profiles L.A.-area theatres

    The Los Angeles Times has published a “best of” article profiling several L.A. area theatres.

    We’re lucky. As blockbuster moviegoing season gets into full swing this Memorial Day weekend, we live in a place where it’s just as easy to see that new, hot indie as it is to see that old, familiar Indy (think crystal skulls). We get to do so in any one of dozens of unique theaters. And the price? Not so bad, considering the alternatives.

    In Chicago, for example, the Village Roadshow Gold Class Cinema chain is slated to open a theater later this year that will charge an estimated $35 per ticket. That gets you reserved recliners in a 40-seat theater, food service brought to your seat, special parking and the latest in projection and sound innovations.

    But a little intrepid researching around Southern California has revealed all those amenities and then some. Try signature cocktails. Leather couches. Refreshments from around the globe. Granted, they may not all be found at the same theater, but on the other hand, our admission prices top out at $15 — at the El Capitan, of all places.

    View the rest of the article here.

  • May 28, 2008

    New NYC-area theater rumors

    BRONX, NY — Has anybody heard which theater chain will operate on the site of the Kingsbridge Armory on Jerome Avenue?? Related Companies won the site development proposal from NYC and they have announced a theater as part of a mixed use development plan for the armory.

    Months back there it was announced that National Amusements would build on Broadway in the Marble Hill section in the West 200 block area near the new Target store. That project was being developed by Bernard Rosenshein of nearby Westchester County, NY as reported in the Bronx Review Press. Not sure if that project is still active.

    SECAUCUS, NJ — Heard that the Kerasotes chain is about to sign a lease to build somwhere in Secaucus. No further details. Anybody know a bit more???

  • May 24, 2008

    History Channel on NTHP’s Eleven Most Endangered

    Here’s a five-minute video from the History Channel about America’s Eleven Most Endangered Historic Places (which includes the Boyd Theatre), “an annual list that highlights important examples of the nation’s architectural, cultural and natural heritage that are at risk for destruction or irreparable damage.”

  • May 23, 2008

    Save The Boyd Rally Coverage

    PHILADELPHIA, PA — Yesterday’s rally to save the Boyd Theatre, recently named one of “America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places” by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, received extensive coverage by the local press.

    The rally was covered by the Philadelphia Inquirer; in an article and blog post in the Philadelphia Daily News: on Fox-29; on KYW (with photos of the rally); and by NBC 10.

    Thanks to Howard Haas for the links!

  • Burned theatre leads to civil rights complaint

    PORTSMOUTH, OH — Lee Scott, the co-owner of the Columbia Music Hall, which burned in November 2007 as the result of what the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms, state and local agencies determined to be arson, has filed a civil rights complaint against the city’s police chief and the police department.

    Scott who had previously been active in city politics and had helped recall a mayor that opposed his restoring the then closed movie theater, had been quoted in the Daily Times 12 hours before the fire as declining to pay for extra police protection.

  • May 22, 2008

    “Ghostlight” to spotlight supernatural

    NEW YORK, NY — After shooting the pilot episode at the historic former Repertory Theatre of Boston (Boston University Theatre) in January, ‘Project Ghostlight’ is ready for the spotlight. The series created by SchoonerScout productions explores the lost history of America’s theatres. Legend, lore, and the lure of the supernatural set the stage for a haunting experience.

    See the video on YouTube for a preview.

  • New Edition of David Naylor’s Book Needs Your Help!

    David Naylor’s Great American Movie Theaters was one of the first books I ever read about classic cinemas. In fact, the book was a major inspiration for this website. I remember going online in 1997-1998 trying to find information on many of the theaters Naylor profiled. That search led Patrick and I to found Cinema Treasures in 1999 as a site where we could house updated information, share it, and help others find theaters around the world to visit (and to eulogize).

    So it is with considerable excitement that Naylor and the Theatre Historical Society of America have announced a new, updated edition of that wonderful guide book. According to THSA, “The revised edition will retain the style and flavor of the original and again will be arranged by geographic region, with a state-by-state listing of movie palaces and neighborhood cinemas.” The book is slated for publication in Spring 2009.

    This time, Naylor, too, is harnessing the power of the Internet and the community of movie theater fans around the world by soliciting submissions for the new book. Karen Noonan of THSA writes:

    In order to be considered, we have devised the following criteria that each submission must meet:

    • Located in the United States.
    • Still standing, whether operating or not.
    • Built originally as a single auditorium/performance space.
    • Presented films on a regular basis at some point in its history.
    • Retains some architectural integrity from its use as a movie theater.

    We would also like to invite Cinema Treasures' members to participate as well! We have links on our website to the criteria, rules and submission forms.

    The deadline is June 1, 2008 so don’t wait to submit your favorites! This is a great opportunity to highlight your local Cinema Treasure and share it with the world. I know I’ll be first in line to get the new edition.

    A press release appears below the fold:

  • May 19, 2008

    Fisher Theatre to host new season of hit Broadway shows

    DETROIT, MI — Nederlander Detroit, management company for the Fisher Theatre, announced today that the famed venue for performing arts will begin a multi-million dollar renovation this month in preparation for one of its biggest seasons of Broadway in Detroit. The major refurbishment project includes several new public bars in the lobby, restroom improvements, and the addition of an all-new, private party room.

    Renovations will be completed just in time to raise the curtain later this Fall for the first of six sensational shows all appearing at the Fisher Theatre for the 2008-2009 Broadway in Detroit subscription series. The season opens with Avenue Q, the smash hit 2004 Tony Award winner for Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book (November 2008), followed by A Bronx Tale starring Chazz Palminteri (November – December 2008), A Chorus Line (January 2009), Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (March 2009), Grease (June 2009) and Jersey Boys (November 2009). Additionally, subscribers will have the first opportunity to purchase tickets to the triumphant return of Wicked (December 2008 – January 2009).

  • May 14, 2008

    Opera House’s owners cited

    BINGHAMTON, NY — As they continue to figure out the future plans for the Riviera Theatre, the owners have been cited for not filling out the necessary paperwork and let it fall into disrepair.

    The company that owns the Stone Opera House was fined $100 for failing to register the Chenango Street building as a vacant property with the city, said Wilson “Doc” Rigdon, one of the company’s partners.

    The city’s vacant-property ordinance requires owners to submit a plan to rehabilitate, demolish or maintain and secure an empty building. Last month, the city took Stone Opera House LLC to court for failing to register the building.

    Read the original article in the Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin.

  • May 13, 2008

    Final season for drive-in movies in the Flint area?

    FLINT, MI — When this writer took in “What Happens in Vegas” at the US 23 Twin Drive-in Theatre, it was learned that the drive-in’s owner Lou Warrington suffered a serious heart attack last year which left him homebound. He is 71. His 74-year-old wife Diane is doing double duty by caring for her ailing husband and managing the drive-in. It is the belief of Diane Warrington and the drive-in staff that is the final year of operation for the US-23 Twin Drive-in. The Warrington family is seriously considering putting the drive-in property on the market. The most likely fate is redevelopment. There is a small Kroger supermarket adjacent to the drive in. The Warringtons would be willing to sell the propety to Kroger if the price is right.

    Word is that the only reason the rival Miracle Twin Drive-in Theatre is still open is because the US 23 Twin is still open. So if the US 23 Twin closes permanently, so will the Miracle Twin. So with the recent news of the two drive-ins' season opening, it is likely that this is the final year for the two drive-ins.