Coliseum Cinemas

4260-4261 Broadway,
New York, NY 10033

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Showing 26 - 50 of 127 comments

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on February 23, 2010 at 6:53 am

Ace, I scanned through my collection of movie time clocks and counted the number of films playing Saturday night at 8:00pm.

In 1989 the Coliseum was either closed all year or playing Spanish language films only and not advertising outside the Spanish language press. Does anyone know?

Ace on February 23, 2010 at 6:04 am

I’m guessing that at first, the triplex was the orchestra (1 screen) and the balcony (2 screens) right? If that’s the case then it was circa-1981 when they abandoned and gutted the orchestra section. The theater’s appeared to have had an up-and-down history. Thanks for the dates Alvarez! Where did you research to find these dates? My previous estimates were just that, estimates.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on February 22, 2010 at 3:09 pm

I did some research and found these multiplexing dates:

Single screen until 1978 when it is remodeled as a triplex.
1981 – Loses a screen and becomes a twin.
1989 – closes
1991 – Re-opens as a Quad.
2001 – closes
2004 – Re-opens as a Quad.

KingBiscuits on August 1, 2009 at 1:02 am

Looks like they have reopened the theatre. They are currently showing Aliens In The Attic, Orphan, Harry Potter, Ice Age 3 and two Spanish films.

HowardBHaas on July 31, 2009 at 3:22 pm

Thanks to your comment, Ace, adjusted above to reflect Open, with website link, too.

KingBiscuits on July 31, 2009 at 4:07 am

The theatre was closed back in June by the Department of Health after a few major health code violations. Here are the inspection notes.

View link

Ace on July 27, 2009 at 6:11 pm

This is probably the earliest known photo of the Coliseum. It dates back to 1922, and most notably features B.S Moss' name on the vertical marquee, which indicates that its prior to RKO’s decades-long ownership. Note that at first, a different, smaller marquee was used before the large, ornate marquee the theater was known for was installed. Its certainly a treat to see the theater untouched and in pristine condition. Enjoy:

View link

Ace on July 27, 2009 at 5:27 am

That’s an amazing photo! Thanks for posting it up! Equally amazing is that big marquee! Interesting to see the location of what’s the modern-day entrance to the theater today…….that is, there appears to be no entry at all! I can only imagine the marvel that place was back then.

Here’s a photo of the theater circa-1986:

I’m old enough to remember the Lerner retail store which appears to have replaced the former main entrance. Guess this indicates that, by the mid-‘80’s at least, the orchestra section was gone.

jordanlage on September 23, 2008 at 7:14 am

Ah, beautiful. Thank you.

jordanlage on September 22, 2008 at 9:52 pm

As of 9/22/‘08,the Photobucket links to Warren G. Harris’ photos are all down. Any chance of seeing them again?

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on August 20, 2008 at 8:32 am

Yes, I mean Manhattan actually, although it may be the longest running in the whole city. This dates as far back as 1921, perhaps earlier.

longislandmovies on August 19, 2008 at 10:44 pm

I think on Long Island it is the FANTASY -1920- But can not find a date on the Bellmore theater and that is old also…

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on August 19, 2008 at 8:35 pm

I believe this is now officially the longest running, still existing, movie theatre in New York.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on November 1, 2007 at 8:12 pm

Here are some exterior shots I took a couple of weekends back:

Entrance & 181st Street main facade
Facade over marquee
Main facade arch
Ornamental detail
Ancient window
Main facade detail
B'way facade centerpiece
B'way centerpiece detail
B'way facade feature
Broadway & 181st
Display case

The name of the theatre as per the marquee is Coliseum Cinemas, so I believe a revision is in order up at the top of this page. I presume that in the evening, the neon comedy & tragedy masks at either side of the theatre name panel are brightly illuminated.

DixonSteele on September 6, 2007 at 11:12 am

I visited my nephew in the Heights a few years ago and we went to see one of the Scary Movie sequels, I believe it was 3, which would make it 2003 (it could’ve been 2 in 2001, not sure).

Speaking of scary…what a dump!!

longislandmovies on July 5, 2007 at 5:58 am

Does anyone have creative entertainment phone number?>???Bookers in ny.

efriedmann on June 29, 2007 at 5:55 am

I lived near this theater from July 2003 to March 2006, but did not go to a movie there even once.

ridethectrain on December 6, 2006 at 2:32 pm

Does any house have Dolby Digital or dts. Or is the sound mono or stereo

br91975 on November 17, 2006 at 10:32 am

Ace is correct; I remember the Coliseum operating as a quad in the summer of 1991 when ‘Terminator 2: Judgement Day’ was booked there.

I had my first chance to see a film (‘Miami Vice’) at the Coliseum this past summer and was as impressed as Ken Roe was during his visit back in May. The theatre was very well-maintained and the staff was nothing but very professional and friendly. Moviegoers in the five boroughs (and visitors from out of town) need to do all they can to support the city’s remaining vintage cinemas (the Coliseum, the Jackson Triplex, the American, the Ridgewood, and any others I’m wantonly leaving out); the subway ride might be a bit long, but the trip is well worth it.

longislandwally75 on October 17, 2006 at 7:30 am

it was still 1 screen in late 70’s….under rko…

i worked there before i went to 59th street…


Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on October 16, 2006 at 10:41 pm

Ace, I show it reopened as a quad in 1992.

My guess is it twinned around 1971.

Something called the Cinema 181 was advertising in 1966 and I have yet to figure out where that was.

Ace on October 16, 2006 at 6:10 pm

Yeah, I’ve been aware of that for awhile now, but I find that the info on the theater from that website clashes a bit with what I’ve heard around here (such as when the theater was split, then twinned and whatnot)