Comments from Joe Vogel

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Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about CMX Odyssey on Nov 21, 2011 at 8:03 am

The Cinemagic Atlantis 15 was designed by TK Architects. The Cinemagic is not featured on TK’s web site, but a few photos of it, mostly during construction, are featured on this page at the web site of Reward Wall Systems, the company which provided the ICF blocks that were used in the construction of the project.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Megaplex 13 at The Junction on Nov 21, 2011 at 7:53 am

The page at FFKR Architects' web site is gone, but there is a photo here, at the web site of Yesco, the company that built the signage for the project.

There are a few photos, including some construction photos, on this page at the web site of Reward Wall Systems, the company that provided the ICF blocks that were used in the construction of the theater.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Fox Theatre on Nov 21, 2011 at 7:46 am

There’s a bit of information about the history of the Crane Theatre in this item from a Carthage Press weblog. It says that the house opened around 1922, and had a Hope-Jones organ.

The 1955 Boxoffice article I linked to earlier is now available starting at this link. There are additional photos on the three subsequent pages.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Roxy Theatre on Nov 21, 2011 at 7:42 am

In 1913 there was a movie theater called the Delphus located in this block of 4th Street. The August 2nd issue of The Moving Picture World said that a new airdome had been built at the rear of the Delphus Theatre in Carthage, and would be known as the Delphus Hippodrome. The operators of the theaters were J.P. Williams and Joseph Logan.

The Arcadia Publishing company’s book “Carthage, Missouri,” by Michele Newton Hansford, has a ca.1914 photo of the south side of the square in Carthage (Google Books preview,) and the caption says that the Delphus Theatre was located in the three-story Cassaday Building, about in the middle of the block. Goggle Street View shows that the building is no longer there. Is it possible that the Delphus Theatre was the house that eventually became the Roxy?

If the Roxy was not in the same building as the Delphus of 1913, it’s possible that it was the unnamed theater mentioned in the April 27, 1921, issue of The American Architect, which said that F.B. Logan was taking bids for construction of a two-story, 80x100-foot brick theater building on East 4th Street in Carthage. The project had been designed by a Kansas City architect named A.C. Wiser.

As both the Delphus and the 1921 theater project were connected with someone named Logan, it might be that the 1921 project was a replacement for the Delphus, which appears to have been located in a building dating from the 1870s or 1880s, judging from the photo in Hansford’s book.

The only problem I can see with the original Delphus or the 1921 project, assuming it was built, having become the Roxy is the difference in size. The 1922 edition of Julius Cahn’s guide listed the Delphus as a 1000-seat house, and the 1921 project was certainly a large building, so the 300 seats attributed to the Roxy here would be quite a way off.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Esquire Theatre on Nov 19, 2011 at 12:42 pm

Given gsmurph’s information that this house was located the Reliance Building, it’s clear that the Esquire was the Reliance Theatre that was mentioned in a list of current construction projects by the Van Sant-Houghton Company, published in the August, 1916, issue of The Architect and Engineer of California: “Reliance Theater and office building, Oakland (Seventeenth Street and San Pablo Avenue.)

The Reliance Theatre was mentioned in quite a few publications in 1916 and 1917, including the September 30, 1916, issue of The Moving Picture World, which said that the house had opened on September 2nd. An earlier issue of the same publication said of the theater, then under construction, that it was “…on the site of the old Rice Institute, but the old building has been practically rebuilt.”

The most effusive piece on the theater I’ve found is from the September issue of Pacific Service Magazine, the house organ of the Pacific Gas & Electric Company:

“Reliance Theatre, Oakland, threw open its doors to the public on Saturday evening, September 2d. The theatre is Oakland’s largest and one of the most attractive on the Pacific Coast, nothing having been spared that goes to make for the comfort, convenience and restfulness of a modern theatre.

“At the opening hour, the theatre stood forth, a blaze of light and color. Floodlighting projectors, located across the street, illuminated the three facades of the building. On the gore, a large vertical electric sign boldly announced the name of the new recreation place, and electric signs above the entrance parquet told of the high quality attractions to be seen there. In all, twelve hundred and fifty 5-watt sign lamps were used and the twinkling of the traveling borders produced the effect of a myriad of diamonds, sparkling in the white light.

“The exterior of the building is finished in white, the entrance and ticket-booth being of marble and white tile. Throughout the interior, a color scheme of old ivory, pink and blue harmonizes with the heavy blue carpet and draperies. Massive indirect lighting fixtures add to the richness of the interior decorations. The organ lofts are located on both sides of the picture screen, and in the near future a $20,000 organ will be installed; a small organ temporarily serving.

“The building itself is a Class A structure with main floor and balcony, and seats 1800 people. Located on a gore, it has exits on two streets besides a private court, and in an emergency can be emptied in less than two minutes. The ventilation system is a departure from established custom. A large electrically driven fan forces the air into a large air chamber in the basement of the building, from which pipes lead to outlets placed under every alternating seat on the main floor of the theatre. Exhaust fans, located at the rear of the theatre, carry out the vitiated air; a complete change taking place every ten minutes. A furnace heats the incoming air when desired. Outlets from a stationary vacuum plant are installed throughout for cleaning.

“The operating room is of reinforced concrete lined with galvanized iron and is fireproof throughout. Three Simplex projecting machines are installed, one being used for emergency only. All electrical apparatus is in duplicate, there being two mercury arc-rectifiers and a motor-generator set for supplying direct current to the picture machines. Full assurance of a reliable and continuous source of electric supply is given. A 3-phase, 4-wire, overhead service supplies the motor-generator set, emergency lighting and the power load throughout the building; single phase, 3-wire, underground service supplies the general lighting of the building and the two rectifiers. Both lines are supplied from the 30,000-h.p. steam plant, thereby backing up all that the name ‘Pacific Service’ implies. The total installed load at present is as follows: 3-phase power, 15 h. p.; rectifiers, 6.5 k. w.; lighting, 22.8 k.w.

“The ticket office is equipped with electrical ticket-selling machines and automatic change-making apparatus. Pretty girls in uniform do the ushering and distribute programs. The Reliance Theatre is a credit to the city and to the people who promoted it. ‘Pacific Service’ welcomes it to its list of consumers.”

Despite the many mentions of the Reliance Theatre on the Internet, I’ve so far been unable to track down the name of its architect.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Theatre St. Francis on Nov 19, 2011 at 11:39 am

The October, 1916, issue of The Architect and Engineer of California has an item concerning what must be the Theatre St. Francis, although it calls it the St. Francis Theater. The item also names a different architect for this house than the description does. Here is the relevant part of the item:

“It is announced that plans for the big moving picture theater at Fourth and Market Streets, San Francisco, are being made by Alfred Henry Jacobs, architect of the recently completed St. Francis Theater on Geary Street. The latter theater has occasioned some favorable comment on account of certain unique features, one of which is the placing of the picture screen at the entrance end of the theater, instead of forward. The seats all face the rear, the idea being to avoid the glare of the pictures when entering the theater.
The magazine might have been mistaken about Jacobs being the architect, but that doesn’t seem likely as this publication was usually quite reliable, and the item was published about the same time the house opened. It’s also interesting that the item reveals the St. Francis to have been a reverse theater. Perhaps evidence of the theater’s original projection booth still exists at the back of the building?

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Toho La Brea Theatre on Nov 19, 2011 at 8:22 am

The May 9, 1960, issue of Boxoffice featured a photo on the front of the Modern Theatre section depicting the auditorium of the recently-renovated Art La Brea Theatre.

A fuzzier version of the same photo was one of several that illustrated an article about the opening of the house, which had been closed for some time, in the June 6 issue of Boxoffice.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Capri Theatre on Nov 19, 2011 at 1:46 am

Here is an updated link to the May 9, 1960, Boxoffice article about the newly renovated Capri Theatre, formerly the Melba.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about State Theatre on Nov 19, 2011 at 1:45 am

The State reopened in 1960 after another remodeling. A photo of its updated auditorium appeared on the cover of Boxoffice of May 9 that year.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Cinebowl on Nov 17, 2011 at 1:12 pm

There are several photos of the Cinebowl on the web site of the project’s designers, NBDA Architects.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Odeon Wrexham on Nov 17, 2011 at 1:08 pm

The 8-screen Odeon Wrexham was designed by the architectural firm NBDA Architects. The firm’s web site provides photos of the project.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about White River Cinema on Nov 17, 2011 at 1:05 pm

The White River Cinema was designed by the Bolling, Cheshire, architectural firm NBDA Architects. Here are photos of the cinema at the firm’s web site.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Odeon Newark on Nov 17, 2011 at 12:57 pm

The Reel Cinema at Newark-on-Trent was designed by the architectural firm NBDA Architects, which has photos of the project on its web site.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Odeon Metrocentre Gateshead on Nov 17, 2011 at 12:52 pm

Odeon MetroCentre was designed by NBDA Architects, of Bollington, Cheshire. There are photos of the Odeon on the firm’s web site.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about AMC Tustin 14 at the District on Nov 17, 2011 at 12:40 pm

The AMC Tustin 14 was designed by the architectural firm Perkowitz + Ruth. The theater is featured in a slideshow on the firm’s web site.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about AMC Firewheel Town Center on Nov 17, 2011 at 12:39 pm

The AMC Firewheel 18 was designed by the architectural firm Perkowitz + Ruth. The firm’s web site features a slide show of the theater.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about PlayStation Theater on Nov 17, 2011 at 12:24 am

I think the policy is that if a theater is currently in operation, even if it has been converted into a live venue and isn’t showing movies, it will be listed by its current name, and have its movie house names as AKAs.

In the case of theaters that are gone, such as the Rivoli, if they operated under one name for most of their history and under a later name for a fairly short time, it makes sense to use the name by which the greatest number of people visiting the site would probably remember it.

Incidentally, if you want to find the Rivoli under its final name, you have to search CT with the full name United Artists Twin. Nine other currently listed houses called UA Twin can be found only under the abbreviated name. Wikipedia-style redirects would be useful.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Uptown Theatre on Nov 16, 2011 at 12:45 pm

This list of San Francisco theaters and dancehalls has the following timeline for the Uptown Theatre:

New Alcazar 1908-1911; 1912-1925 Republic; Sutter 1926; Uptown 1930-1970
The August, 1931 issue of Architect and Engineer had two interior photos of the Uptown Theatre: two interior photos of the Uptown The first shows the staircase to Mezzanine, and the second (scroll down) the Spanish-atmospheric auditorium. The architects of the Uptown were Fabre & Hildebrand.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Baywood Theater on Nov 16, 2011 at 12:12 pm

As noted above, the Baywood Theatre was on B Street, not El Camino Real.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Soledad Theatre on Nov 13, 2011 at 10:54 pm

Two photos depicting the front and the auditorium of the Soledad Theatre were used to illustrate an article on laminated wood construction which appeared in Boxoffice of August 5, 1950. The photos are at the bottom of this page. (To read the beginning of the article, use the “previous page” link. The final four paragraphs of the article are at this link.)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Le Parisien on Nov 13, 2011 at 12:04 pm

The architect of the Princess Theatre was D.J. Spence. The artist in the photo CSWalczak linked to earlier is most likely F.S. Challenor, who painted the mural on the theater’s sounding board. A brief article about the Princess Theatre appeared in the February, 1918, issue of the Canadian trade journal Construction.

From the description above, it seems unlikely that any trace of the original decoration of the 1917 Princess remains. The 1917 house was itself a replacement for an earlier Princess Theatre. The photo to which mortonbg linked earlier must depict the front of the pre-1917 Princess, as the facade as designed by Spence was as tall as that of Le Parisien.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Majestic Theatre on Nov 13, 2011 at 11:34 am

The Film Daily of May 25, 1933, reported that the Majestic Theatre in Los Angeles had been closed and dismantled.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Soledad Theatre on Nov 13, 2011 at 11:23 am

Andres: Yes, different theaters have been conflated on this page. The page is supposed to be about the Soledad Theatre that closed in 1946, following a fire. Boxoffice Magazine reported that the theater burned to the ground, but that might or might not have been the case. The photos linked in Chuck’s comments actually depict the newer Soledad Theatre on Kidder Street. So far nobody has posted any photos of the earlier Soledad Theatre.

To add to the mysteries, I’ve found a single reference to a theater in Soledad called the Mission, being operated by Ernest Gnesa and Edward Franscioni in 1933. This might have been another name for the Soledad Theatre which opened around 1922, or it might have been a different theater as yet unlisted at Cinema Treasures.

The 1947 Soledad Theatre doesn’t have a Cinema Treasures page yet. I think I have enough information about it to submit it now, so a page might show up later today or tomorrow. Look for it under the “New Theatres” heading on the site’s home page.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Rio Theater on Nov 13, 2011 at 11:22 am

The Rio Theatre building is still standing at 325 Front Street, corner of Benito Street. It is currently occupied by La Esperanza Market.

Andres: Boxoffice Magazine has an extensive collection of its back issues online st this link. I don’t use the collection very much anymore. When it was first available, any search engine could fetch many results on just about any subject the magazine had ever covered, but the site appears to be blocking searches now, and its own internal search function is useless.

I think the sources cited by other CT users who commented on the theaters in Soledad were mostly print sources which are not available online.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel commented about Tower Theatre on Nov 12, 2011 at 5:19 am

The only downtown theater called the Cameo that I remember was this one, the former Clune’s Broadway, north of Sixth Street, between the Arcade and the Roxie. It was open through at least part of the 1980s, showing Spanish language movies.

In the 1960s, when the Tower was still operating as the Newsreel Theatre, there was a television theater on the lower level, occupying the former lounge. It presented closed-circuit programs on a fairly large (for that time) projection screen. I don’t think they ever gave the television theater its own name, though.