The latest movie theater news and updates
March 31, 2006
FOREST HILLS, NY — The Landmarks Preservation Commission has decided that the 66 year-old Trylon Theatre does not meet its designation criteria, according to this story in today’s New York Daily News.
In a letter to City Councilwoman Melinda Katz, Chairman Robert Tierney said, “[The Trylon] will not be recommended to the full commission for further consideration as an individual landmark”. Since last summer, the former movie house has been in the process of being converted into the Education Center for Russian Jewry, serving the area’s Bukharian Jewish populace.
Michael Perlman, founder of the Committee to Save the Trylon Theatre, maintains that as one of the few remaining structures built in homage to the World’s Fair of 1939-40, the theater does have architectural and cultural significance. Perlman said of the commission, “They don’t give a damn about the opinions of the people who inhabit their communities. They are the ones who know their communities best.”
Yahoo is featuring Cinema Treasures, along with a photo by Cinema Treasures user and volunteer Sean Doerr, on its Yahoo Search Directory homepage.
(And greetings to new users who are visiting us from Yahoo for the first time!)
March 30, 2006
HAYS, KS — The Historic Fox Theatre has been sold to Colorado Real Estate Developer and Fort Hays State Alumni Brooks Kellogg for $101,000.00.
In Wedneday’s edition of the Hays Daily News, there is front page article titled “Buying a piece of history,” which indicates work on the building will start sometime this summer, which will include bringing the building up to code, but specifics were not reveiled.
The building, which was owned by the City of Hays, after it was given to them in December 2003, has set unused for 2 years. Dickinson Theatre is final owner of the building had the stipulation that it could not be used for 1st or 2nd run moives, which limited the buying potential according to the auctioneer.
AMARILLO, TX — Center City of Amarillo, Texas has awarded a $40,000 grant to the Amarillo Historical Preservation Foundation (AHPF) to restore the historic Paramount Theater electrical sign that adorned the Paramount Building in downtown Amarillo from 1932 until the late 1970s.
The AHPF plans to raise at least $80,000 to complete the job and provide long-term maintenance on the sign, which will be placed in its original location on the Paramount Building, Ninth Avenue at Polk Street, when completed. The sign was removed in the late 1970s for use at a disco in the city’s warehouse district northeast of downtown. The AHPF acquired the sign in late 2005.
“We wouldn’t have considered a job so large without Center City’s help,” said Wes Reeves, president of the AHPF. “We can now get started on a dream we’ve had for a number of years.”
Wellborn Sign Company of Amarillo, with a major restoration award under its belt, has been chosen to restore the Paramount sign. Wellborn was the 2005 winner of the Texas Sign Association’s best restoration project for its work on the historic Ritz Theatre in Wellington, Texas, where a 1940s-era sign and marquee were brought back to life after years of neglect.
March 29, 2006
Act 1&2 Theatre at 2128 Center St., showed final screenings of C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America and Summer Storm to sparse audiences Sunday before closing down for good.
The lease for the two-screen cinema, owned by Landmark Theatres, had run out, said Vice President of Marketing Ray Price.
He refused to comment on specific reasons for the closure, but said, “In general, one of the problems with theater properties is the retail value of the square footage is higher than the value of the theater. Other retail venues can better afford to pay that.”
“It’s not uncommon,” he said.
Landmark operates 57 theaters nationwide and specializes in art-house first-run independents, foreign film classics and other nontraditional cinema. In the East Bay, the company owns the California Theatre, Shattuck Cinemas, Piedmont Theatre and the Albany Twin. It acquired Act 1&2 in 1994.
Employees who chose to stay with the company were given the option to transfer to other theaters, said Act 1&2 Manager Chris Hatfield.
Last week, a theater employee told the Daily Californian on condition of anonymity that the theater was closing because low customer turnout was exacting a toll on financial solvency. Price would not confirm that.
March 28, 2006
I recently fell upon this wonderful site and became a member.
I was doing a search on a local theater in NJ, the Harwan Theater. I had wanted to revitalize it and was hoping somehow I could re-design the space or buy it. I found out the theater is in the process of renovation and re-opening.
I am an interior designer and have always wanted to open my own club/restaurant. I was wondering if there are any theaters that are closed that can possibly be turned into a venue either for live theater, live music, club or a restaurant.
I am all for saving theater in this country but I didn’t realize the amount of theaters we have, unfortunately most of them are closed. I would like to save the architecture and possibly turn an existing run down space into something new and exciting.
Please if anyone can help me in achieving this I would highly appreciate this. Who do I need to contact? I will look into each theater individually if I have to. I would also be interested in saving the building to us as a theater if I felt that was the best use for the space.
Last thing, on average how much does a theater cost to buy? I live in NJ so anything in surrounding states is fine.
(My email is )
March 27, 2006
Preservationists fear the opening of a Glendale multiplex could force the historic Ridgewood Theatre to close its doors for good – about a decade shy of its 100th birthday.
The Ridgewood, designed by architect Thomas Lamb and first opened in December 1916, is believed to be one of the oldest continuously operated theaters in the country, having never closed for renovations during its 89-year run.
But residents think the upcoming opening of a Regal Cinemas multiplex in the Shops at Atlas Park, an office/retail complex on Cooper Ave. between 80th and 83rd Sts., will bring too much competition for the Ridgewood.
FOREST HILLS, NY — My name is Michael Perlman, and I am a Forest Hills preservationist who is assisting the owner of the Cinemart Theater with the restoration of an ornate coffered ceiling from 1925.
The ceiling is located in the entryway/lobby, & is concealed with lackluster, industry-standard paneling. The theater was formerly known as the Metropolis and the Inwood. This is one of the many activities I hope to accomplish in honor of Forest Hills' 100th anniversary this year.
I would appreciate it if anyone can share photos of the interior/exterior prior to the 2002 renovation (1925-2001), since this will assist us in the restoration. If you don’t have any photos, I would appreciate any bit of advice as to where I can find some. Also, if you can provide some restoration tips, that would be of great help too. Please e-mail me at Thank you!
Please read the following March 15th Daily News article by reporter Nicholas Hirshon, which documents our effort and the history of the Cinemart:
The Cinemart website is as follows: www.cinemartcinemas.com/chc/cc/about_us.asp
We recently purchased a theater located in Lacrosse, Wisconsin. We have acquired numerous theater equipment such as: Art Deco theater seats, light bars, projector equipment, 45' screen, curtains, Marquis Letter’s, etc.
If anyone is interested in purchasing these items, please contact Mike.
Thanks and as always have a great day!
March 24, 2006
SAN FRANCISCO, CA — Sundance Cinemas, the on again, off again project from Robert Redford’s Sundance Group, seems ready for its close-up after nine long years. The group, led by former Landmark Theatres executives Paul Richardson and Bert Manzari, has announced the purchase of the Kabuki 8 Theatres from AMC.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the theater is scheduled to reopen in late summer and early fall—just in time for the bulk of independent and art house film releases.
Sundance Cinemas was first announced in 1997 as a joint partnership with General Cinemas, but never opened a single theater. The project was put on further hiatus whne General Cinemas filed for bankruptcy protection and was eventually sold to AMC.
News surfaced last year that under Manzari and Richardson’s guidance (they departed Landmark with its acquisition by Mark Cuban), Sundance Cinemas would be relaunched.