Comments from CSWalczak

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CSWalczak commented about Lorenzo Theater on Apr 28, 2006 at 5:25 am

A rather sad exterior shot of the Lorenzo is at this website:
View link
I hope the prservation effort continues and succeeds.

CSWalczak commented about Fox Oakland Theater on Apr 28, 2006 at 4:57 am

There is a recent photo of the interior of the Fox Oakland at this website: View link

CSWalczak commented about Gaslight Cinema on Mar 28, 2006 at 4:56 am

This theater is, unfortunately, shortly to be demolished for a combination condominium/retail/hotel project, according to this article Although there was an attempt to save it, Petoskey voters gave the OK to the projet last year, dooming the theater.

Originally called the Temple Theater (the name used to remain visible in the outer lobby tiles before additional screening rooms were added and the entrance and lobby redesigned), the theater had been “modernized” over its lifetime.

In the 1990s, four small, non-descript screening rooms were added adjacent to the original auditorium. The expansion of the theater into a muliplex also included a modern, functional, but bland lobby area and entrance that essentially obliterated any traces of the original.

Little remained though of the original decor in the original auditorium except for some wall lighting fixtures and the stage; Soundfold drapery and a drop ceiling made it look much like hundreds of other cinemas around the country.

CSWalczak commented about Wick-Willo Twin on Jan 12, 2006 at 8:05 pm

It would be great if you could remember or find out, Dave; this place always struck me as one of the oddest theatres ever built, and it came and went very quickly. I rather suspect that some people who lived in the area never knew it was there. It was so small with very limited parking; one could easily drive right by it and and not even see it unless one was really looking for it. It appeared on the Greater Cleveland scene roughly about the same time as the World East and World West and I have wondered if the operator was trying to emulate those small cinemas as in many ways the set up was similar.

CSWalczak commented about Michigan Theatre on Sep 6, 2005 at 8:36 am

This theater was operated by the Butterfield circuit. I went there a few times in the early 1970’s; at that time, its interior was very plain, almost devoid of any ornament or decoration.

CSWalczak commented about Lakeshore 7 Cinemas on Sep 3, 2005 at 5:53 pm

Some of the information in the original entry for this this theater is not correct; there is no connection between the demolition of the Shore and the expansion of the Lake into what is now the Lakeshore 7. The Lake and the Shore were not next to each other – the Lake address is and was 22624 Lakeshore Boulevard; the Shore was at 22500. A number of storefronts separated the two theaters, most of which remain today. The site of the Shore in now occupied by a bank and
an entrance to the parking that was behind the the theaters.

As dave-bronx points out, the Shore was demolished in the early 1980’s. Both the Lake and the Shore had been closed, but some years after the demolition of the Shore, an entrepreneur with community support, reopened the Lake. Its first expansion was by triplexing -two smaller cinemas were built into the original auditorium. In the early 90’s, four cinemas were added along one side of the theater by capturing an alleyway and perhaps one or two of the stores, but none of the expansion occupies any part of the Shore’s footprint.


CSWalczak commented about 'Recent Comments' Feature Offline on Aug 31, 2005 at 11:18 am

Here’s my two cents: I agree with Mr. VanBibber; some of the comments really don’t add much to enhance either the accuracy or completeness of the information about a particular theater or contribute very positively to preservation efforts. I admit I enjoy reading some the nostalgia when folks mention a movie they saw there or tell us they met the person they later married or that they used to work there, but this is essentially a database of theater information, not a blog. Unless the moderators can acquire more capacity, criteria for comment posting is going to be a necessity.

CSWalczak commented about Seeking Information About Ann Arbor Movie Theaters on Aug 30, 2005 at 10:38 am

I did some checking on a number of websites and it would appear that there are four possibilities, but none that actually continuously showed movies from 1910-1915.

Arcade Theatre 1914-1928
Orpheum Theatre 1913-1957
Rae Theater 1915-1928
Whitney Theater 1871-1952

The sources indicate that although the existence of the Whitney spans the years you cite, it did not start showing films until 1914 and then not on an exclusive
basis until the 1930’s. Perhaps the Ann Arbor library, a local historical society, or an historian at the University of
Michigan could research these theaters
for you.

Christopher Walczak

CSWalczak commented about Cooper Theatre on Aug 30, 2005 at 5:22 am


The strip screen you refer to was not unique to the Cooper but was essential to proper showing of the original Cinerama films; such screens were installed in all of the original theaters that showed 3-projector Cinerama and in many that showed so-called single lens Cinerama. The angled strips prevent light from bouncing off the left side of the screen to the right (thus partially washing out the image)and vice versa; it did not have anything to with screen bowing. A fine discussion of this phenomena can be found at:
where the original Cinerama souvenir book is reproduced; there is a picture of a man behind the screen taken from an angle that reveals the strips. There is also a (sad) picture at:
View link
showing the tattered remains of the strip screen that was at Chicago’s Cinestage Theatre (nee Selwyn) which was Chicago’s third Cinerama house as well as a link to another picture that shows the anchoring plates and the precise angle at which each strip had to be set.
When the Cinerama Dome in Hollywood was restored and remodeled, many of us Cinerama purists were disappointed that the decision was made by Pacific Theaters not to restore the original strip screen. If you ever have the chance compare seeing “How the West Was Won” at the Dome versus seeing it at the restored Cinerama theatre in Seattle, you will see the difference. They are both great places to see a film though.

CSWalczak commented about Shore Theatre on Aug 29, 2005 at 5:33 pm

I lived in in Cleveland when the Shore was demolished, and I am rather certain the Shore was not demolished to allow for the expansion of of the Lake Theater (now the Lakeshore 7). The Lake and the Shore were not really next to each other. Several years intervened between the demolition of the Shore and the expansion of the Lake. They both fronted on Lakeshore Boulevard but were separated by a number of stores. The site of the Shore is now occupied by a bank and by an entrance to the parking area behind the stores and the parking behind the Lakeshore 7; previously, the only entrance to the parking was off the road that ran behind both theaters.

The Lake was first triplexed by building two smaller cinemas left and right within the original
auditorium, with the center doors leading into what remained of that auditorium; its big screen is intact. Later, four cinemas were built alongside the original theater building in the early 1990’s, with an entrance hall (I just can’t call it a lobby) leading in from the back parking lot. The expansion was accomplished by capturing an alleyway and demolishing one or two of the stores that stood between the original Lake and the Shore.

The lobby of the Lakeshore 7 is essentially the original Lake lobby which has some Art Deco touches remaining though the lavender and maroon paint job is certainly not original.

CSWalczak commented about Hippodrome, Cleveland, 1930's on Jul 27, 2005 at 8:40 am

There may very well have been. I recall quite clearly that there was a large stairway leading down in the outer lobby (before one entered the theatre) on the Euclid Avenue side which was the grander entrance.

If memory serves, it was marble faced, with brass railings. There were signs above. I can’t recall what they said, but there were
certainly some shops down there. It’s possible that shops might have replaced the bowling alley.

Chris Walczak

CSWalczak commented about "Question on Strand Theaters" on Jun 14, 2005 at 8:56 pm

I found both of these comments interesting, but as a former English teacher I think Bryan M is possibly closer to the usage and derivation; the term strand appears frequently in English literature as an equivalent to “shore” or “beach"or "waterside” as in “He was walking on the strand”. Logically then, “Strand” (and there are many theaters called The Strand in Britain) could have been originally the rough equivalent of the Beach or Shore or Riverside theater and the meaning got lost when applied to theaters here in the US that copied British theater names as many Strand Theaters in the US that are nowhere near water.