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Babylon auditorium photo mentioned above now posted in photos.
Maybe you saw a dvd made from a bad public domain print, Joe?
According to TCM.com — “All the delays and extravagances sent Bird of Paradise far over budget. It had been budgeted at $450,000 and ended up costing at least $725,000. Though the film performed well at the box office, it did not make back its cost.”
That was an astronomical cost in 1932, and I would be very surprised if The fastidious Selznik would release a sub-par product. Unfortunately, the movie fell into the public domain decades ago. It reminds me of the Howard Hughes’s picture The Outlaw, where he fussed over every frame, and now all we have today are scratchy, blurry copies of his magnum opus.
Per Lamont Cranson’s comment under the very advertisement mentioned above for “Bird of Paradise” –
King Vidor’s B&W version of a hugely popular stage spectacle opened simultaneously in New York at the RKO Mayfair in midtown and the RKO Albee in downtown Brooklyn on September 11th, 1932. 20th-Fox’s later Technicolor remake opened at the Roxy (with stage show) in March, 1951.
And it’s $8. for movies starting before noon, slightly higher for 3D or IMAX movies.
That rave review makes me want to see the movie again, even though I just saw it a few months ago in its 3-D incarnation.
To quote form the review “…the comicalest of all is Bert Lahr with an artistically curled mane, a threshing tail, and a timid heart. As he mourns in one of his ballads, his Lion hasn’t the prowess of a mow-ess; he can’t sleep for brooding; he can’t even count sheep because he’s scared of sheep. And what he wants is courage to make him king of the forest so that even being afraid of a rhinocerus would be imposerus. Mr. Lahr’s lion is fion.”
Reopened today (4/4/14)
The internets are your friend.
The story of the Wizard of Oz' difficulties at the box office upon its initial release is a bit apocryphal.
It was the second most popular movie of 1939 (after Gone with the Wind) and the third most popular movie of the entire 1930s (after GWTW and Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs) according to more than one internet source.
A good read on the creation and history of The Wizard of Oz can be found in Aljean Harmetz' The Making of the Wizard of Oz, which is still available in many local libraries.
Passed by tonight and the “cinema” sign was lit and the side marquee said “watch 4 grand re-opening” so that’s something at least.
I really don’t love the photo above, and wonder how it could have over 20,000 views…!
I can’t seem to link the Times article so here is its excerpted text, the parts dealing with the theater itself:
Broadway’s next mega-budget show, the Australian musical “King Kong,” will no longer open as planned at the Foxwoods Theater next winter, which will instead become home to a revival of the musical comedy “On the Town,” the producers of both shows said in separate statements on Thursday. At the same time, the theater’s new leaseholders announced they were renaming the 1,900-seat house – one of Broadway’s biggest – to the Lyric.
The new landlords of the Lyric, the London-based Ambassador Theater Group, could have waited for “King Kong,” but the theater has been empty since January after the closing of “Spider-Man.” No theater owner wants to have an empty house for a year or more, especially after paying roughly $60 million to take over the lease, as Ambassador Theater Group did. A spokesman for the company said that its co-chief executive and point person for the Lyric, Howard Panter, was not available for an interview and that the organization had no comment.
The “On the Town” producers plan to put all 1,900 of the Lyric’s seats on sale, according to a spokesman for the show. “Spider-Man,” which struggled to fill seats late in its three-year run, ended up closing off some rows and shrinking the capacity of the theater to 1,600 seats.
The Lyric has been renamed following the end of a sponsorship deal last year between the Foxwoods casino and the theater’s previous landlord, Live Nation. The theater has a reputation for feeling cavernous and having acoustic challenges and has been home to a string of unprofitable shows including “Spider-Man,” “The Pirate Queen” and “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.” The theater opened in 1998 after combining two spaces – the Lyric, a Broadway theater-turned-movie house, and the Apollo Theater. The new space was named the Ford Center for the Performing Arts; the name was later changed to the Hilton, and then the Foxwoods.
I am happy to report that the rebuilt theater at this site has new owners and since the contract with Foxwoods is over, they are re-naming this house —wait for it — the Lyric.
(Article is in the New York Times 3/7/14.)
I would have preferred it being called the Lyric Apollo, but the Lyric is the best name this theater has had in years!
I am happy to report that this theater has new owners and since the contract with Foxwoods is over, they are re-naming this house —wait for it — the Lyric.
I also noticed the omission of films in the proposed line-up. I do hope they are installing projection equipment as well as theatrical lighting, sound, etc.
I’m also curious about the stadium seating. Will it rise as high as the first mezzanine, perhaps incorporating it? Can’t wait to find out…!
To create a link, first copy the web address you wish to link to and put it in brackets [like.this] and right next to it put some words that will be in blue in parentheses (like this) then hit Add Comment and you should be done.
I try to remember the order of the bracket and parentheses by alphabetic order — “b” as in bracket comes before “p” as in parentheses.
Isn’t this site now partly occupied by Legal Seafood restaurant? One dead, several injured after a carbon monoxide leak in the basement.
And since no one really wanted to see The Master it would have been a lot of work for very few eyeballs.
Well, last year is a lot longer ago than “currently being demolished” as posted on 2/4/14. It seems that the empty space was there for months before new construction started.
The marquee now says “Closed for renovations. See you in April.”
Doesn’t 70mm refer to the actual size of the film stock and not to the particular dimensions of its aspect ratio?
His name is listed in the side bar under Additional Info — Architects: Thomas W. Lamb
Welcome back, Lost Memory! It’s been like five years. Glad to see you posting again.
This picture was co-written by the prolific screenwriter Richard L. Breen credits here and not the longtime chief of the Production Code Joseph I. Breen.
There is still plenty of construction stuff in the lobby as of yesterday. The concession area is gone, and the moldings and decoration put in by Cineplex Odeon has been stripped off. And they have removed the exterior box office and the space is now covered by plywood.
Not only did Jaws not have much advance publicity, but the free publicity it could have had for over a week — the name of the movie on the marquee — was not there as of Saturday morning, mere hours before the show.
I know the volunteer staff is spread thin, and under the weather, but it seems ludicrous that someone couldn’t change the marquee before show time.
Was it even changed BY show time?