The latest movie theater news and updates
March 17, 2005
I’m David Balaban, Grandson of David Balaban, director of theater operations for Balaban and Katz until 1949. I’m writing a book entitled, “ The Chicago Movie Palaces of Balaban and Katz” The book will be published in December of 2005. It will contain hundreds of pictures of Balaban and Katz theaters, people and never before seen documents about the unique company that my family operated. If you have a Balaban and Katz memory or picture, please email it to me for possible inclusion in the book. Thanks!
March 16, 2005
SUFFERN, NY — The SOUNDS OF SILENTS Film Festival comes to the historic Lafayette Theatre in Suffern, New York. Nine silent film programs with LIVE musical accompaniment to be screened April 8-9-10, 2005.
The SOUNDS OF SILENTS Film Festival at the historic Lafayette Theatre in Suffern, New York, presents nine unique and entertaining silent film programs from the golden age of cinema, all on the Lafayette Theatre’s giant silver screen – and all with live musical accompaniment. Screening will be films with stars such as Charlie Chaplin, Lon Chaney, Douglas Fairbanks, Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd, and Lillian Gish. All of the films are showing in the finest archive prints available and all will feature live musical accompaniment. Selected short subjects will also be a part of several shows. Festival Dates: April 8-9-10, 2005.
AMHERST, MA — We are selling two screens from the old Amherst (MA) Cinema, which is being renovated. Both are 16' by 29' acoustically transparent with grommets. One is white and was taken down and carefully rolled just last week. The other is high-contrast grey and is rolled in its original box (from Hurley Screen Co, NY). Both are in good condition as far as we can tell.
We are asking $300 for the white screen and $200 for the grey, or take both for $400. You must pick them up in Amherst MA (halfway between Boston MA and Albany NY).
ACT NOW! We need to get them out right away to make room for the renovation. Call Amherst Center for Stage & Screen (413-256-1991) or email . Next week may be too late!
March 15, 2005
March 14, 2005
Cinema Treasures just added its 9,000th theater listing!
Thanks to everyone for sharing your memories, thoughts, and histories of the world’s “Cinema Treasures,” past and present, with our growing community.
At the pace the Theatre Guide is growing, 10,000 is just around the corner …
MILWAUKEE, WI — Thanks to the eagle eyes of Hugh Swofford comes this: according to a story in Friday’s Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, the 1929 AVALON on Milwaukee’s south side in the former village of Bay View, is in the process of being purchased by a local investor, and it looks as though the Landmark chain of movie houses, which includes the ORIENTAL and the DOWNER in Milw., will be the operator of this “atmospheric” type cinema which closed five years ago.
After several false starts, it now appears that a deal in earnest, not relying upon a land contract, will come to be, and if so we will then have a grand total of 2 operating movie palaces remaining in the city, out of the 20 we once had (this excludes the DOWNER and the TIMES and the remodeled TOSA (the ROSEBUD CINEMA) which are not really palaces).
March 11, 2005
ALLENTOWN, PA — The demolition of Allentown’s historic Colonial Theater commenced this past Saturday, March 5th.
As previous news articles have reported, the Colonial was to be demolished by the City of Allentown. Shame on Mark Mendelson for destroying a theater that was a real gem when he bought in in the 1980s and letting it get this bad.
Double shame on the City of Allentown and them letting the Colonial get this bad before they finally obtained the nerve to do something.
March 10, 2005
SAN FRANCISCO, CA — I just found out today (as I work in the film and advertising business) the following memo has been sent:
Please be advised the final day of operation for the UA Coronet 1 will be Thursday, March 17.
If you have any questions, please let me know.
Regal Entertainment Group
March 9, 2005
SAN ANTONIO, TX — It has been recently announced that Santiko Theatres has broken ground on the new Paladium 20 Theater in farwest San Antonio, right across Interstate 10 and Six Flags Fiesta Texas.
I think the grand opening is slated for Fall 2005 or Spring 2006. The theater will be located on the old rock quarry there and will be a part of the new shopping center, which will include a new upscale brand of Sears (called Sears Grand) and some other upscale shopping stores.
Santikos also said that two of their older theaters, Northwest 14 and Galaxy 14, will be closed and basically gutted and renovated into all stadium seating and state of the art sound. This is similar to what they did with their old Century South 9, which they gutted on the inside and rebuilt it as the Mayan 15 (with self serve concession stand and stadium seating).
PHILADELPHIA, PA — How many out there enjoyed sitting in the old movie palaces in Center City, Philadelphia back in the 50’s and 60’s???
I am talking about the Boyd, Fox, Stanley, Randolph, Goldman, and Midtown Theatres. These theaters showed the film on a first run, even on a reserved seat engagement. Watching classics such as “Gone With the Wind”, “Ben Hur”, “Lawrence of Arabia”, “West Side Story”, “My Fair Lady”, and “The Sound of Music” on a giant screen was a view to behold. Sadly, these movies lose their dramatic effect when shown on a TV screen.
These were the days when a film played at one particular theatre anywhere from nine months to two years before general release. It was sort of special when I would go to these theatres with my family. Those were the days of going to the movies. Does anyone remember when the usher wore uniforms and white gloves???
I am glad that Clear Channel is restoring the Boyd Theater, to its former glory. I worked at some of these theaters as an usher in the late sixties. Anyone else out there a former theater employee???