The latest movie theater news and updates
March 14, 2006
PHILADELPHIA, PA — I just wanted to share a few memories about the Benner Theater in Philadelphia.
I grew up in Oxford Circle of Philadelphia during the 1950s. The Benner was my neighborhood theater. I spent Friday nights and Saturday matinees at that theater as a kid. After Friday night shows, we would go two doors away to a malt shop called “Polly’s”. I recently read in another blog on this website that it became a Lenny’s Dog Shop?
Anyway, I eventually worked at the Benner, cleaning and sweeping the floors after the Saturday matinees. For this, I would get free movie passes to the theater. My friend cleaned the projection room, for which he also got $.25 a week. I was so jealous!
Hello, my name is Charles Bruss. I am currently working on a book project about the histories of Wisconsin drive-in theatres. Your help with this is greatly needed. I am looking for interesting stories of people’s fond memories of attending and/or working at any of Wisconsin’s current or closed drive-in theaters.
Also needed are any photographs of any Wisconsin drive-in. All photos used in the book would of course get photo credits. Do you have any memoribilia with the drive-ins name on it? I am interested in those things as well.
Visit my website at: www.drive-inthruwisconsin.com Contact me at 414-327-0457. Or email at: Thank you for your help in advance.
March 13, 2006
WHEATON, IL — The Wheaton Grand Theatre on Hale Street in downtown Wheaton has set a date of April 1st for the start of its restoration project, and will also be closed starting that date, which means its frequent rock shows will have to find a new host for the time being, according to this article in the Daily Herald.
The 80 year-old theater will be closed indefinitely while work on the estimated $7 million restoration kicks off. The goal is to bring the Grand back to its original single, 800-seat auditorium configuration. Ray Shepardson, who is the managing director of the restoration project, says, “I did not understand how effective and popular [the theater] was. But if we didn’t close now, the restoration was never going to happen.”
NEW YORK, NY — On March 25th, Hourglass Group will kick off its 2006 season with Paradise Follies at the Murphy Amphitheatre at FIT.
Hosted by Tony-nominated Isabel Keating (The Boy from Oz), the gala event will honor the remarkable Dorothy Wegman Raphaelson (1904-2005), the penultimate Ziegfeld Girl. She was the wife of playwright and screenwriter Samson Raphaelson, who wrote the classic Ernst Lubitsch film Trouble in Paradise. In June, Hourglass Group will present the world premiere of a new stage adaptation of Trouble in Paradise at the Hudson Guild Theatre in Chelsea.
Paradise Follies will feature a Gala Champagne reception with Drama Desk award-winning composer Michael Garin (Song of Singapore) on the piano, a tribute film to Dorothy Raphaelson, a screening of Trouble in Paradise and a celebrity-filled afterparty sponsored by Grey Goose Vodka at the soon-to-open Chelsea club, Balance. Balance will house the Museum of Mixology, a museum dedicated to the history of the cocktail.
March 10, 2006
I’m a freelance writer working on a story about the heyday of movie theatres as the entertainment center of small towns and urban areas, before television. I’m looking to interview people who remember going to the movies during this era, who remember the all day Saturday movies and .10 popcorn, and any other fond memories.
The interview can be via phone or email, whatever you prefer, and should not take much of your time. If interested, please send an email to Thank you for your time.
March 9, 2006
SUFFERN, NY — The SALUTE TO GREAT MOVIE MUSICALS Weekend – March 10-11-12
The SALUTE TO MOVIE MUSICALS Festival at the historic Lafayette Theatre in Suffern, New York presents seven illustrious movie programs — including several rarely shown titles — from the golden age of cinema and all on the Lafayette Theatre’s giant silver screen.
One of Hollywood’s most popular genres, the movie musical came of age in the 1930s and is still extremely popular today. Screening will be films featuring the talents of Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire, Elvis Presley, Ginger Rogers, Howard Keel, Ruby Keeler, Leslie Caron, and John Travolta, including the return engagement of KISS ME KATE presented in double-system polarized 3-D and stereo sound.
All of the films are screening in the finest studio and archive prints available and each show will feature pre-show music from the Mighty Wurlitzer Theatre Pipe Organ. Festival Dates: March 10-12, 2006.
Tickets are $8.00 for each show. The money-saving Full Festival pass good for all seven shows is $50.00. Day-of-the-show tickets will go on sale at the box office 30 minutes before showtime.
March 8, 2006
March 7, 2006
The Cinema Treasures website now features over 13,000 theaters and counting!
Thanks to everyone for continuing to add and/or update our growing theater database.
15,000 here we come!
— The Gang at Cinema Treasures
CHICAGO, IL — Crain’s Chicago Business reports that Kerasotes has dropped long-standing plans to build a multiplex atop a Target store in the large development now underway at Wilson Yard in Chicago’s Uptown neighborhood.
It does plan on entering the Chicago Market through suburban multiplexes and seeks to acquire the City North 14 and Webster Place theaters, which are being sold by AMC as a result of their merger with Loews.