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Let’s NOT blame the people who crowded the theater in its last several days, and who after the curtain closed, applauded & lovingly lingered, taking photo after photo. That’s several days worth of a crowd. To survive as a 1st run movie theater, seats needed to be filled for weeks. The problem as a 1st run movie theater was the “exclusive” for Manhattan was long gone with the same movie being played in multiplexes everywhere, diluting the potential audience. The only sold out show I attended was “The Thin Red Line” because it was an East Coast exclusive with only the UA Union Square sharing it as the distributor really wanted to showcase the movie.
The Ziegfeld survived in recent years because of one of the special events indicated by movieguy, movie premieres that were cut back after 2008 recession. Ironically, premieres are returning to Manhattan as this article states, studios aren’t happy with the closing, and more premieres are going to the AMC Loews Lincoln Square and AMC Empire, and Moma (as another article also stated)http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/nys-ziegfeld-theatre-closes-star-860298
Fine article with filmmakers' views on its closing:
Movieguy says 7 crystal chandeliers. Looking at my photos, 1 in Box Office, 3 in Lobby Museum, 3 in Foyer upstairs, 2 in Concessions Foyer, for total of 9. There’s also pretty sconces (at least a dozen) in the halls wrapping around the entry of the auditorium, and large sconces (8, I think) in the auditorium. It is a shame that Ziegfeld museum items won’t be in the Ziegfeld Ballroom. It would also be a shame if the ancient wood is trashed. Some people would happily purchase chairs especially those with the Z on them!
Online at Twitter, report of free popcorn & soda at last night’s last show, with a long line to get in & waiting shortly before the prior show as nobody wanted to depart. There’s a photo of many bags of popcorn & also a photo of the gorgeously costumed Ziegfeld girls from the night before. I tried to capture the photos for my “others” photo gallery but couldn’t.
Also I forgot to note that when I saw the Funny Girls reissue at the Ziegfeld, the movie depicted Ziegfeld and when I went downstairs, he looked just like his picture. That was really neat seeing that movie at the Ziegfeld.
And, I will miss the “stills” photos that often were with the film posters outside. It added a premiere movie palace character to the Ziegfeld. I think I recall the Astor Plaza & others in NYC also doing that.
Yes, that will be a sad change! It will happen tomorrow.
You read my post & took the photo- thank you!
Giles, please go see a movie there, take photos for the photo gallery, and tell us whether you hear the projector, and if not, why not.
Last screenings tonight! 7 PM, 10 PM. Wait for closing credits to end for the curtains to close! Last mainstream (not art) single screen movie theater in Manhattan. Go for the Ziegfeld experience!
Back open today, with Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
It isn’t a single screen & I haven’t been there in a long time, but the Loews auditorium of the AMC Loews Lincoln Square 13 is ornate, has a balcony, and was designed to resemble an old fashioned movie palace. And, shows mainstream blockbusters.
the MOMA theater 1 was remodeled in 1976 but originally opened in 1939.
The Village East also has a historic auditorium, though that theater wasn’t originally for movies.
Since the Tower East (72nd St) closed, the movies I’ve traveled from Philly to NYC were for the Paris & the Ziegfeld. I may try the others, but I am thankful for the Paris & will continue to see wonderful, art movies here.
“The cutting edge is long gone, however. Lately, the Ziegfeld has mostly been frequented by nostalgists who come for the theater itself and stay for whatever title happens to be on the marquee. Sheer size is its last enduring novelty.”
From me (Howard) those nostalgists enjoy the grandeur too! And will be in full force tonight for Star Wars: The Force Awakens! Fill the house & give the Ziegfeld the send off she deserves!
For people attending today (last day) minor request. I added today 2 photos to photo gallery, from when you exit the auditorium from the right side (of the movie screen). There’s exit doors directly to the Foyer with the stairs & escalators. From the left side of the auditorium, you enter 1st the Concession Foyer, then the Foyer with the stairs/escalators. One photo- caption says “fuzzy” shows the walls to the auditorium on left side of photo (the corridor in front) & doors to the right. Maybe someone can take a better photo? whether doors closed (before movie) or open (after movie). To clarify- a photo of the corridor to the right showing the corridor & showing the doors to the right.
I doubt Cablevision, the lease holder. Maybe BowTie? this is a great set of photos from Saturday. Ziegfeld closed Saturday & Sunday?
Nice blog about seeing Braveheart, which I also saw here
Thanks, if the federal government closed today, I understand better. Yesterday, at least, AMC Mazza Gallerie was open, but that’s in a mall.
the linked article says AMC didn’t reach terms with the landlord so unless some other theater company does so, then it won’t reopen ever.
Did anyone attend 2008 Go Ape Week? which were shown? good prints?
And, 3 Cheers to Al for compiling the wonderful list of films that played from start to finish of the Ziegfeld!
AMC website still asserts Uptown closed due to the snow storm. Why still closed?
From Philly, I can answer that when I visited in 2012 & 2013, curtains not used, and the later time, even matting wasn’t used!
Wonderful! Thank you for the curtain closing video!
I have a flickr gallery of my photos of movies on the Ziegfeld’s marquee & in order, each room from the Box Office to the Lobby Museum & Grand Stairs, the Foyer upstairs, Concession Foyer, and Auditorium. I may add more photos at a later time.
After Star Wars 7 is over, the curtains close. A few minutes later, the gold curtain opens, followed by the white curtain. I quickly snapped 7 photos, a bit dark. I am not great with making videos & can’t return to NYC from Philly to try. Can someone please use your camera or cell phone to video the curtains opening (after the movie is over)? & post on Youtube & post the Youtube link? The Ziegfeld’s use of 2 curtains is special enough to be videotaped!
What year was this? I have 1 or 2 others but my scanner isn’t working.
I also attended yesterday’s 12:45 PM show of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Both curtains are being used after the film credits.
Yesterday was my 43rd movie at the Ziegfeld, more movies that I’ve seen anywhere outside of the Philly region other than the DC Uptown and NYC Paris. I started in 1995 with 2 period epics about Scotland, Rob Roy and Braveheart. In 1996, I enjoyed another costume drama, Moll Flanders. Reserved seating began following renovations which resulted in theater’s 1997 reopening for the restored 70mm Vertigo (which I saw at the DC Uptown). In 1998, I saw another costume drama, Great Expectations, followed by 2 WW2 epics: Saving Private Ryan and The Thin Red Line (sold out as it was only in LA & NYC’s UA Union Square). In 1999, the curtains were still used but the slide show began and I saw Pushing Tin and in 2000 another costume drama, Anna and the King.
In 2001, I saw another WW2 epic, Enemy at the Gates, then Moulin Rouge (which had a 2 week East Coast exclusive at the Ziegfeld & is my favorite new movie musical seen at the Ziegfeld), the restored 35mm roadshow of Funny Girl which was awesome to see, and the fun Ocean’s Eleven (digital projection). In 2002 I enjoyed the incredible, restored Metropolis and Solaris. In 2003, I saw Chicago, the forgettable Down With Love, the 30th Anniversary of The Way We Were, and the sea drama Master and Commander. In 2004, I saw The Day After Tomorrow and Ocean’s Twelve. In 2005, I saw the Raging Bull (which had its 25th Anniversary gala premiere at the Ziegfeld, besting the original at the Sutton), War of the Worlds, and The Great Raid (but went to the Paris to see a movie until the Ziegfeld’s projection booth exhaust fan was repaired, which it fortunately was that day)
In 2006, I saw Triston and Isolde and then had one of the greatest movie experiences of my life when during the classics festival, I saw The Godfather and Part II with a half hour break, this being the 1st time I saw Part II on a movie screen. I also saw Casino Royale (James Bond) in 2006. In 2007, I saw Dreamgirls, then the excellent Zodiac, Ratatouille (one of my favorite animated movies) and Enchanted. In 2008, I saw The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and in 2009, Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. Preferring 35mm to digital projection, I went elsewhere until everywhere was digital and in 2012 saw The Bourne Legacy (which unlike the original trilogy, I disliked), then The Master in 70mm (the 70mm resolution was outstanding). In 2013, I saw 42, then Captain Phillips. In 2014, I saw Jersey Boys, Gone Girl, Interstellar (in 70mm and photographed & wrote about it in the 70mm newsletter), and Into the Woods. In 2015, I saw Mission Impossible-Rogue Nation.
I’ve added more photos, from yesterday. I’ve written text describing the theater’s design, that will be added to the Introduction above. Thanks to Walter Reade, Cineplex Odeon, Cleaview, and Bow Tie for operating the Ziegfeld for all these years! It was built to showcase movies at a time when the same movie was not playing blocks away in multiplexes and sadly NYC does not have the common sense to find a way to keep it to showcase movie premieres & special events!
oops,this is the stairs area