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Theater Houses ‘Round Town
Omaha World-Herald (NE) – Sunday, June 16, 1985
Crossroads shopping center, 72nd and Dodge Streets, 393 – 2887. Two screens. Tickets are $1.75 for showings that start before 6 p.m., otherwise $3.50 except $1.75 for those younger than 12 or older than 60. Matinees on weekends and major holidays, and during summer and winter school vacations. "
“Theater Houses ‘Round Town”
Omaha World-Herald (NE) – Sunday, June 16, 1985
4952 Dodge St., 551 – 3595. One screen. Tickets are $2 for showings that start before 6 p.m., otherwise $3.75 except $3 for students, $2 for those younger than 13 or older than 61. Matinees on weekends and major holidays, and during summer and winter school vacations."
Virgin had the ground floor, as well as two lower floors. The box office to the theater was on the second basement floor, and the theaters were located one level below that.
I went there for cheap movies, and the occasional free preview.
Times Square has been a shopping destination ever since a man stood on a corner and counted how many people were visiting the “old” Times Square of pornography and drug use. That’s when The Gap opened, and the “new” Times Square began.
Where there are tourists, there are consumers. New Yorkers might not shop there, but Barnum’s fools are still visiting Times Square and parting with money a century after he opened his dime museum.
The (former) Barnes & Noble was located at 1972 Broadway, between 66th and 67th Streets.
1931 Broadway would place this theater within Lincoln Center.
The exact address should be found in a city directory (or phone book).
Report of the closing:
March 25, 1990
Operated by New Yorker Films since 1977. The land was owned by ABC, sold to Millennium Properties, which, of course, built the Sony-Loews-AMC multiplex one block north.
“For five days Film Society is delighted to bring back to the big screen a showcase of rarely screened mainstream classics all on the best projection formats available with the lady herself here to talk about them.”
! ! !
This theater has spoiled me on IMAX. Many other theaters in the city have retro-fitted IMAX systems into their theaters, but why pay extra money for an IMAX movie if it’s being projected onto a regular screen?
If I want to treat myself, it’s this screen, or the Ziegfeld.
Also, the history above needs to be updated to reflect the change from Sony to Loews to AMC. I suspect they’ve updated their projection systems as well.
Also, with the large number of commercial IMAX films (as contrasted with the educational fare seen a few blocks north at AMNH), the screen is now exclusively IMAX only, with no late-night screenings of “regular” movies.
Hey… I just added it, from New York!
Feel free to add more information! Can someone in Omaha check the city directories at the downtown branch and see what years it is listed?
And while you’re there, see if you can scan or copy ads from the Omaha-World Herald microfilm!
I live in the neighborhood, but never ventured up White Plains Road past Nereid Avenue. (Between Nereid and 241st is light industrial and the subway train yard. Not much to see.)
That department store seems to be closed now. I’ll report back if I find out anything new.
Is it worth saving? (And how much would that cost? How many years has the space been unkempt?) There are quite a few performing spaces in that neighborhood… could this compete?
I suggest rescuing what architectural details are worthwhile and move on.
The official spelling is “Mount Vernon”.
Cornell College had two “movie theaters” circa 1988: The main stage in the then-decrepit Armstrong Hall, and a small theater in the basement of Cole Library, accessible from the back of the library.
When I attended Cornell College from September 1988 until January 1989, I saw “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” in September 1988 at a theater in town. It was only open on the weekends. Ah, yes… “The Odeum”! Let me add it!
Owner’s (?) obituary is here:
I spent my summers in Lake View, eight miles to the south, in the 1980s. We would receive weekly advertising circulars which would feature movie theater ads for the region (Carroll, Ida Grove, Lake City, Sac City). Sac City always had strange movies, like “Snow White and the Three Stooges”. Either they couldn’t afford the rental of newer movies, or the screen and projector was a remnant of Cinemascope.
If memory serves, the theater did replace the screen sometime in the late 1980s. I believe the old screen had vertical metallic louvers which had to be calibrated anytime something was thrown at the screen.
THANK YOU! I was racking my brain… Back in the late 70s, my brothers were driven all over Omaha for soccer games, and I remember seeing the remnants of the sign from the intersection of 72nd and Crown Point Avenue as we traveled to and from Roncalli High School.
I believe there was some lettering still on the marquee. An abandoned drive-in held some mystique to my young mind.
In February 1986, this area was remote enough to host viewings of Halley’s Comet. (Little light pollution)
“Highway 50” is also known as “Millard Avenue” at this intersection. The top of the map in the advertisement is oriented with West to the top.
According to the WPA Guide to Omaha, there was a theater on the east side of this block, where the UP Center is now located (formerly a parking lot, directly north of the library). Am I mistaken? And if it did exist, did it ever show movies, or just live shows?
According to graffiti in the projection booth, “The Barefoot Executive” was the last movie screened at the Orpheum, before it was acquired by the City of Omaha.
(My brother used to record Orpheum performances for KIOS-FM. My mother and I would “assist” him by carrying in the recording equipment, then moving down to empty seats during intermission.)
“On Golden Pond” had it’s “national premiere” here (it was already in limited release to qualify for the Academy Awards), due to Henry Fonda’s hometown roots. The premiere was a fundraiser for the Omaha Community Playhouse, where Fonda was once a fledgling actor.
(a listing of premieres in Omaha)
It was located (still is located?) in the basement of the Crossroads shopping center. As that building is mostly vacant, does that space still exist? That’s why it was a twin… empty space utilized to show movies.
The entrance to the theater and arcade was on the south side of the building, where Babys R Us was/Eyemasters is located, to the east of Barnes & Noble.
If memory serves, during it’s later days in the early 1980s, it screened “Popeye” for some forty weeks. Can someone check the newspaper microfiche?
It was on the east side of 90th Street, next to the Papio Creek. The address in the ad above is now an Aldi market. All of the businesses on that side of 90th were free standing buildings. Because of the Papio, that side of 90th was never as successful as other parts.
In later years, rather shop-worn, it became a 99-cent movie theater.
Wikipedia has more information about “Jerry Lewis Cinemas” on his page.
The Fox theaters were just north of JCPenney’s, where Dick’s Sporting Goods is now located. The Fox entrance was outside, and screens exited to the parking lot to the east, just north of Penney’s. To the west of Fox was the mall entrance, Boston Mall, which led to the Six West box office. Later, a small store was built north of AMC, housing a magic store and later selling t-shirts.
The Boston Mall hallway was AMC on the west, Fox and Penney’s on the east, and thus had nothing to see until you turned the corner, where Read All About It and Waldenbooks were located.
I saw the first Midnight premiere, Batman, there, as well as my first R-rated movie (The Fly). I also trekked through a snowstorm to see Disney’s Beauty and the Beast early Saturday morning. It had a newsreel!
Mann operated lots of theaters throughout Omaha, most of them a bit worn… I think most became 99-cent theaters before the discount chains moved in. (At one point, half of the screens in Omaha were discounted.)
I grew up near 94th and Western Avenue, so the Westroads was where we hung out. When it opened, Westroads was billed as the eighth largest shopping center in the world. There was even a grocery store!
The Fox Twin was located outside, next to JCPenney’s. That site is now covered by Dick’s Sporting Goods. It was where I saw the first Midnight premiere screening, Batman. The theater exited around the corner, on the east, to the parking lot north of the JCPenney’s entrance.
To the west was the mall entrance, which was a long hallway with the “Boston Mall” address seen above. Since both sides of that hallway were taken by movie houses and a department store, there wasn’t much to see, aside from movie posters for the Six West theaters.
Directly north of the Six West was a small add-on store, which housed a magic store, and later a t-shirt store.
Everyone exited to the fire exits behind the screens, which shared common hallways. One exit was to the mall, next to the Waldenbooks store if memory serves.
The Six West hosted midnight screenings of “Rocky Horror”, which did not have costumed performers, just people throwing stuff at the screen.
Six West also had a movie newsletter pamphlet.
A few summers, having eight screens to choose from, I would spend entire Fridays seeing multiple blockbusters, interspersed with lunch and playing video games at either JCPenney’s or Montgomery Wards (there was an arcade, but that cost money).