The latest movie theater news and updates
December 26, 2005
Up until the revitalization on West 42nd Street between Broadway and 8th Avenue, there was a porno theater called The Harem, located at what looks like where the BB King now stands.
I need some assistance finding out what The Harem was known as before its life as a porno theater.
I know it must have had a life before porn.
December 23, 2005
Loews and AMC have agreed to each sell five theaters as a condition for the government to approve their merger next year. From the official press release:
“Five theaters from each circuit have been selected by the [uS Department of Justice and various state attorneys general] for sale as a condition to enable the companies to proceed with their transaction. The theaters are as follows:
AMC Fenway 13 (Boston)
AMC City North 14 (Chicago)
AMC Union Station 9 (D.C.)
AMC Kabuki 8 (San Francisco)
AMC Van Ness 14 (San Francisco)
Loews Webster Place 11 (Chicago)
Loews E-Walk 13 (New York City)
Loews (Cineplex Odeon) Meridian 16 (Seattle)
Loews Keystone 16 (Dallas)
Loews (Cineplex Odeon) Wisconsin Ave. 6 (D.C.)
It is anticipated that the sales process could take at least four months.
NEW YORK, NY — What theatre was located on 8th Avenue between West 50th and West 51 streets? I remember they demolished this theatre when they erected the Longacre Apartments. This was sometime in the late 90’s.
It was one block over from the old Madison Square Garden, which was demolished in the late ‘60’s / early 70’s and became the Worldwide Plaza and home to the Cineplex Odeon Worldwide Cinemas (now the Dodger Stages).
I recall the entrance as being on Eighth Avenue closer to West 50th Street. Please help me figure this out, its been on my mind.
Does anybody have the classic General Cinema trailer theme that can be downloaded into my cell phone?
Please reply to : .
Thank You Much
December 22, 2005
I am working on a 12-hour series for The History Channel titled “Mega Movers” which looks at extraordinary moves taking place around the world. I am currently looking for moves taking place between now and February 2006 to profile on the show. Specifically, I would like to document the move of a theatre – are you aware of any that have been moved or are to be moved in the next few months? If so, I would like to hear more about the move and when it is scheduled to begin.
Additionally, I am looking for historic, very large, iconic or just unusual structures moving before Feb 2006 and welcome your suggestions. Please feel free to pass my contact information along to anyone else who may know about other upcoming moves.
OLYMPIA, WA — As a followup to yesterday’s story… The State Theater, built in 1949, is currently undergoing an Enhancement Campaign to restore some much needed areas of the building.
One area desperately in need of help is the beautiful front doors. Several of them no longer lock properly and are unable to be repaired.
Any help in finding a company that make old style ‘brass & glass’ movie theater doors would be much appreciated.
December 21, 2005
OLYMPIA, WA — In 1997, Harlequin Productions embarked on an impossible dream.
With the generous help of our audience and friends, we resurrected the State Theater to create one of the artistic jewels of our community.
To commemorate that achievement, the lobby ceiling was adorned with a new mural: “Rising Phoenix”. With the opening of the State Theater, the bar was raised. Harlequin Productions met the challenge, delivering high-quality, adventurous theater in a beautiful, intimate setting and serving as a powerful economic driver for Olympia’s downtown.
Despite superb ticket sales, the combined fiscal pressures of a sluggish economy and the drain of the State Theater mortgage undermined the finances of the company from ‘01 – '03.
In March, 2004, faced with imminent closure, Harlequin Productions asked the community to determine whether the company was “to be, or not to be.” An overwhelmingly positive response eliminated the crisis and all short-term debt. To ensure the future fiscal health of the company, we must now perform maintenance and upgrades on our home and retire the mortgage.
For more information, visit this website.
ORANGE COUNTY, NY — 5 screens, long lease, great location, first run movies. Looking to retire!!!
December 20, 2005
A feature article, “Pressure increases on Lower Hudson neighborhood moviehouses” by Candice Ferrette, ran on December 16, 2005 in Gannett’s The Journal News. (You can read it here, but I’m not sure how long the link will be active.)
The impetus for the article is the opening of the new 14-screen multiplex, The Waterfront at Port Chester, just one of a number of new multiplexes in the area. It focuses on the three-screen Larchmont theater, but also includes a list of all the smaller venues in the lower Hudson Valley. As the article says, “…in the age of the multiplex — and the even bigger megaplex with more than 15 screens each — size, selection and stadium seating may matter more than the ability to walk to the old picture house on Main Street. … neighborhood theaters in some Sound Shore communities are caught in the classic struggle between the ‘quaint and charming’ and the ‘bigger with more selection.’”
As the article points out, Clearview Cinemas, whose parent company is Cablevision, is owner and operator of nearly all of the smaller theaters in the Lower Hudson Valley—seven in Westchester and one in Rockland. Many of them have fewer than five screens per location, including the Mamaroneck Playhouse, the Rye Ridge Cinema in Rye Brook and the Larchmont Playhouse. These compare to the 15 screens at National Amusement’s Cinema De Lux at the City Center in White Plains, the 18 screens at the Regal New Roc City in New Rochelle and the 14 new screens at the Loews theater in Port Chester.
December 19, 2005
The National Association of Theater Owners has requested that the FCC allow the blocking of cell phone signals inside movie theaters, according to this report from United Press International.
John Fithian, the president of the trade organization, told the Los Angeles Times theater owners “have to block rude behavior” as the industry tries to come up with ways to bring people back to the cinemas.
Fithian said his group would petition the FCC for permission to block cell phone signals within movie theaters.
Some theaters already have no cell phone policies and ask moviegoers to check their phones at the door, Fithian said.
The Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association — a Washington-based cell phone lobby that is also known as CTIA-the Wireless Association — said it would fight any move to block cell phone signals.