Babylon Cinemas

34 West Main Street,
Babylon, NY 11702

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Showing 26 - 42 of 42 comments

teecee on March 11, 2005 at 11:34 am

4/30/79 newspaper ad listing this theater:
View link

wirelessmedia on February 16, 2005 at 7:43 pm

What about the South Bay, up the road in West Babylon (I think it opened as a twin.. it now has 6 “screening rooms”). It’s somewhat rundown, but the movies are still cheaper than most (and it does show first one). Last movie I saw there was “Good Will Hunting.”

GeorgeStrum on January 27, 2005 at 4:52 am

Does anyone remember a very tall, handsome and disinguished gentleman who broadcast a radio program from the lobby of the Babylon theatre in the mid-fifties? Maybe I imagined it. Thanks.

Jacker on November 5, 2004 at 5:23 pm

Prior to Clearview, it was a UA Theatre. We bought it from them..(I work for Clearview).

Dear Mr. Masher,

I am training to become a projectionist with local 640. I am also trying to get in Clearview as a manger. I had Thelar Thatch from Human resources contact me but still waiting. Do you know of any positions opening up in managerial in Long Island?


Email me at:

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on October 31, 2004 at 11:16 am

I have a 1925 photograph of the exterior of the Babylon Theatre. It was certainly named the Babylon then, and not Capitol. The architect was J.H. Phillips and the seating capacity was 1,050. It was designed in a Colonial style. In the descriptive article I have (written by the architect) there are also photographs of the auditorium and lobby taken in 1925.

Bway on October 20, 2004 at 5:45 am

It’s got to have the West in there though, because 34 East Main St would be the other side of Deer Park Ave. I think Deer Park Ave and Main Street (Montauk Highway) is the “zero” point for Babylon.

longislandmovies on October 14, 2004 at 4:08 pm

wow you were everywhere today

Bway on October 14, 2004 at 3:48 pm

Here’s a photo of the Babylon Theater taken today:

Click here for link to photo

longislandmovies on September 16, 2004 at 6:33 pm


tjweppler on June 15, 2004 at 8:35 am

Loved this theater when it was a single, I have fond memories of seeing Superman, E.T., Conan The Barbarian on that big screen. Later visits after it was split were, well, less interesting.

Orlando on May 7, 2004 at 4:56 am

To Clearview King,
Come to the Babylon Historical Society and learn about the history of Babylon’s theatres. This theatre is not the original Babylon Theatre. The original was on Deer Park Avenue and operated from 1912 to the very early 1930’s. It was up the block from the Alhambra Theatre which was the Odd Fellow’s Hall. The Alkhambra operated as a live theatre with stock companies before going to photoplays. The Capitol opened in 1922 and took over the “Babylon” name when the Deer Park Avenue “Babylon” closed. The facade of the Capitol/Babylon Theatre burned in the late 1930’s, early ‘40’s. The entire interior was also redone and doesn’t resemble the original “Capitol” interior. The current theatre has none of the original “Capitol” decor only the remodeling it recieved in the 1950’s. I guess the Clearview’s Kings crown has been mis-informed.

ClearviewKing on April 25, 2004 at 3:13 pm

There’s been one historical inaccuracy in regards to the Babylon movie theatre thats been continually perpetuating, in message boards like this, and even in books (Babylon by the Sea, for example). When you look at a photo of the original theatre (on main street) and compare it with the theatre today, there are amazing differences. When you read that the original theatre was destroyed by fire and that todays theatre was built on the same site, its easy to understand why the error goes uncorrected. Allow me to put one old rumor to rest. The Babylon Theatre built in 1922 never burnt down. In fact, much of it still exists as the foundation of todays theatre. Its true that there was a fire, this occurred in 1954. It is unclear exactly where the fire was or what caused it; the only evidence that I see inside lies in the projection room. Could it be that a fire in the projection room set the roof a-blaze? I don’t know. But what I do know is that much of the original building still exists. If you look at the 1935 photo used in the book Babylon by the Sea, you will see 3 stories- all with windows. Today, there is no evidence of these windows from the outside. The inside is a different story, however. There are storage rooms on the second floor, the entrance of one is located near the mens bathroom. In it you will see the 2 front windows on the left side of the building all boarded up, as well as one more boarded up on the side (facing the alley). The 2 windows on the right side can be accessed from an outside door located on the fire escape. Looking at the side of the building from the outside, you will notice that there is evidence of windows having once been there, all bricked off during the 1954 remodel. You will also note that evidence of the pitched roof still exists by a line formed where the newer bricks were attached to the original! This line is visible in the 1993 photo used in Babylon by the sea. More evidence exists on the inside. If you were to remove one of the ceiling tiles located near the fake fireplace, you would notice some of the original tapestry as well as artwork on wooden beams, all hidden by the newer (and lower) ceiling. Anyone looking for photos of these things should reply to this with their e-mail address and I’ll send them along.

Orlando on March 9, 2004 at 10:28 am

I must have erred, the fire was in 1934 or therabouts when your Film Daily Year Book was published. The Capitol was renamed the Babylon before it burned to the ground. I will check on the fire date from the historical society. This Babylon was built on the site of the original theatre, I can swear to that, I have photos of both buildings. The renamed Babylon had a “Capitol dome” in its' facade decoration that was not removed when it went from Capitol to Babylon. Before the Film Year Book was published, Babylon also had the Alahambra Theatre on Deer Park Avenue on a site now occupied by the L.I.R.R. supports for the train overpass.

Warren G. Harris
Warren G. Harris on March 9, 2004 at 5:57 am

Prior to the 1934 edition, Film Daily Year Books claim that Babylon had two theatres, the Babylon with 1,050 seats, and the Capitol with 800 seats. Was that correct or an error? It seems possible that the Capitol closed as a victim of the Depression and never re-opened.

Warren G. Harris
Warren G. Harris on March 8, 2004 at 11:52 am

Prudential was part of Metropolitan Playhouses, along with the Skouras and Randforce circuits. United Artists Theatre Circuit was the majority shareholder in Metropolitan Playhouses. In the 1970s, the individual circuit names were dropped, and all the theatres went under the UATC banner.

Orlando on February 27, 2004 at 5:15 am

The current Babylon Theatre was built in 1946 to replace the original Capitol Theatre ( aka Babylon Theatre) whick was destroyed by fire in 1945. It was built for the Prudential Circuit, then a leading exhibitor in Suffolk County. The Main Street moviehouse has the only vertical neon sign (still working) in all of Long Island and the five boroughs. I worked the theatre briefly under the UA regime in 1990 and at the time the grosses were so low that you could blow off a cannon in the lobby and not disrupt the combined total of six patrons in the three auditoriums. The balcony is the best of the three auditoruiums since it is un-altered. The 2 orchestra screens suffer from poor sound-proofing as on can hear not onlt the next door film, but the film upstairs as well. I don’t like to nit-pick on surviving theatres, but the reason they won’t survive is because of lack of caring and the exhorbitant amounts charged at the concession stands (especially Clearview). The South Bay Theatre about a mile away (now five screens) charges $4.00 for matinees and has reasonable concession prices. They also get the better of the bookings of the two theatres. If a multiplex should be built in this area (one was already defeated), these two houses will bite the dust.

joemasher on February 26, 2004 at 4:18 pm

Prior to Clearview, it was a UA Theatre. We bought it from them..(I work for Clearview).