Premier Theater

509 Sutter Avenue,
Brooklyn, NY 11207

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Showing 26 - 35 of 35 comments

Vincent on December 3, 2004 at 9:22 pm

I am amazed that there seems to be so little in the way of images of the old movie houses in Brooklyn. When I was a teenager in the late 50s, Loew’s Premier was the place to be on a Friday night. Lots of the guys and girls from Thomas Jefferson High School and other local schools would be there. Unforgettable, of course, was the goldfish pond in the front lobby. Sutter Avenue was actually a fashionable shopping street in those days—hard as that may be to believe now. If anyone has any pictures of the old Premier or any of the other theaters in East New York, I would be very appreciative.

Warren G. Harris
Warren G. Harris on October 25, 2004 at 8:41 am

The Premier opened circa 1921 and was one of the first theatres designed by Charles Sandblom after he left Thomas Lamb to form his own architectural firm. Sandblom’s other projects at that time included the Capitol, National, and State Theatres in Brooklyn, and the Park Theatre in the Rockaways in Queens.

Suzie on July 10, 2004 at 10:18 pm

Harold… did you go to either PS 174, JHS 149 and/or Wingate High School? I think you and I were in the same class…. either Mr. Wertheim, Mrs. Magrill, Mr. Antosofsky or Mr. Grand? Suzie Kusnetz (one of the taller girls)

Harold Warshavsky
Harold Warshavsky on July 8, 2004 at 6:31 pm

Grew up at 502 Williams Ave between Riverdale and Livonia and needless to say I went to this theatre almost every week; my friend’s uncle worked behind the candy counter there. As far as I remember, the theatre played day and date with the Pitkin from 1953 at least until mid ‘62. When Premier Showcase was initiated by United Artists things started to change drastically. The one thing I do recall that Wedsnday started a new double bill each week butif films didn’t do well they would be replaced on Monday for 2 days with a double bill of 2 lesser features. Any pictures of exterior or interior of this theatre would be greatly appreciated. My e-mail address is I also have a list of every double bill that played there from 1953 thru 1962 which is totally acurate and 1963 thru 1964 which is mostly accurate. Thank You, Harold Warshavsky

Suzie on April 1, 2004 at 11:43 pm

…grew up down the street and loved going regularly to the movies… red velvet seats, a balcony where we’d ‘make-out’ … loges, fish in a tank in the lobby? marble… boys with flashlights who’d lead you to your seats… went to The Pitkin on dates.. fancy, twinkling ‘stars’ above, an organ… gorgeous… any pics of the interiors/exteriors will be most appreciated… so would your memories of growing up in the neighborhood… Suzie

Warren G. Harris
Warren G. Harris on February 4, 2004 at 8:03 am

To the best of my memory, the Premier did not play day-and-date with the Pitkin. Loew’s originally acquired the Premier because it was a better theatre than its own Palace. Loew’s kept the Palace but made it second-run to the Premier for that neighborhood of Brooklyn. But when the Pitkin opened in 1929, Loew’s made it first-run for the area, downgrading the Premier to second-run and the Palace to third-run. In fact, when the Pitkin and Kings first opened in 1929, Loew’s tried making them first-run for all of Brooklyn, simultaneously with the Metropolitan in the downtown area. The three theatres showed the same movies but, naturally, had different vaudeville bills. However, this hurt business at the Metropolitan and Loew’s quickly discontinued the practice. But Loew’s shifted the Pitkin and Kings to double features that played a week ahead of all the other Loew’s neighborhood theatres in Brooklyn. That continued until 1949, when the Pitkin and Kings lost that one-week advantage because Loew’s, as part of its compliance with the federal anti-trust action against it, had to give rival theatres and circuits the right to show films at the same time as Loew’s. The Metropolitan continued to be first-run for all of Brooklyn, but most of the other Loew’s theatres became first-runs for their immediate neighborhoods only. In places where Loew’s had more than one theatre, the lesser ones became second or third-run houses.

CarlosVelez on February 3, 2004 at 9:32 am

Thank you Orlando for the information. Yes the 1977 blackout did cause business to close down. I also remember the Buster Brown Shoe’s store at the corner of Williams, and Sutter Ave after the looting it closed down. I was 10 years old. The only thing I remember is that in the spring of 1980 demolition started knocking down The Premier Theatre, in which during that time me,and my friends from the neighborhood would play tag inside the dark abandon theatre which in today’s world I don’t recommend it. I would like too keep in contact with you. If you could some who e-mail me those picture I would mean alot to me. My e-mail is Thank you Carlos Velez

Orlando on February 2, 2004 at 12:42 pm

Just a note, Loew’s did not open or build the Premier Theatre. The Grand Opening ads in the Brooklyn Eagle prove this. Loew’s acquired the theatre in it’s third or fourth year of operation. It already had the Palace, then acquired the Premier (a lovely ornate movie palace) and then built and opened the Pitkin. All three house are fairly close to one another. P.S. The Pitkin and the Premier played date and date while under the Loew’s banner. The Pitkin closed in 1971 (after a 3 week of “Shaft”) and the Premier in 1977 after the big blackout. The riots and looting caused many theatres in impoverished areas of the borough to close. I have some photos of the interior.

CarlosVelez on February 2, 2004 at 7:59 am

Hello my name is Carlos I was born and raised aroung the corner from the Premier Theatre. I lived at 526 Sutter Ave. If you could provide me with some information or where could I find some picture archives regarding the old neighborhood. I’m also fasinated of how the neighborhood looked in the early 19th, and 20th century it would be greatly appreciate it greatly. Thank you. Hope too hear form carlos

William on November 15, 2003 at 11:13 am

The Loew’s Premier Theatre was located at 509 Sutter Ave and it seated 2599 people.