Alexandria Theatre

5400 Geary Boulevard,
San Francisco, CA 94121

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Showing 51 - 75 of 103 comments

Eric on September 18, 2005 at 9:01 am

All hail We really took a lot of photo’s that day (the last operating day), and we really tried to capture the feel of the theatre. Looking at the photos, I remember being in there just like it was yesterday. :–)

leeroychile on September 17, 2005 at 1:11 pm

Hey Chuck1231, there’s a problem with that link. Would love to see the photo. I just learned that this theater closed. I live in L.A. now, but grew up in San Francisco. I went to elementary school at Argonne, just blocks away from ‘82 to '87. I think I saw Never Ending Story at this theater. I know I saw other films there, but can’t quite remember what. I hope this theater can be saved from demolition. Not only that, of course, I hope this piece of history can be put back into action. Theaters such as this one should be considered national historical landmarks.

Lesliemak on August 25, 2005 at 9:28 pm

When I was a child, my family traveled from our hometown in Merced for 2 hours to attend the opening of The Sound of Music at the Alexandria Theatre in San Francisco. The tickets were a skyhigh $5 each but we were happy to pay for the experience of the movie and the theatre. It was a memory I will not forget.

ANTKNEE on July 17, 2005 at 7:43 am

Yep, and the strange thing is all the lights that still burn at night…..even the neon parking lot sign is lit.

Eric on July 17, 2005 at 7:20 am

Well, The Alex is still standing there, and nothing has changed since it ‘closed’. Only change is that the store fronts have been rented out. They could have continued operating it as a theatre all this time, making more $$ to finally eventually convert it into condos or whatever their plans are for it. What a waste…

William on May 24, 2005 at 4:13 pm

Here the 70MM engagements from Michael’s list, 1958 thru 1981. Some early dates include the North California premiere dates.

“South Pacific” July 1st, 1958
“Can-Can” May 18th, 1960
“The Alamo” Oct. 26th, 1960
“Exodus” Feb. 8th, 1961
“El Cid” Dec. 20th, 1961
“Cleopatra” June 26th, 1963
“Oliver!” Dec. 19th, 1968
“Patton” June 9th, 1970 (it opened Mar. 5th @ Golden Gate)
“Dr. Zhivago” Sept. 22 thru Nov. 2 1971
“Gone With The Wind” Nov. 3 thru Nov. 9th 1971
“2001” Nov. 10 thru 16, 1971
“Ryan’s Daughter” Nov. 17 thru 23, 1971 (First time in SF in 70MM)
“Nicholas & Alexandra” Feb. 2nd, 1972
“The Poseidon Adventure” Dec. 22, 1973
“The Towering Inferno” Dec. 20th, 1974 (with the Parkside)
“Lucky Lady” Dec. 25th 1975
“Logan’s Run” June 23, 1976
“Sleeping Beauty” Nov. 9th, 1979 (Re-Issue)
“Alien” June 5th, 1981 (Re-Issue)

William on May 24, 2005 at 3:27 pm

Here are the bookings for Jeffery’s post above.

“My Fair Lady” opened at the Coronet Oct. 30th 1964
“Dr. Zhivago” opened at the Orpheum Feb. 10th 1966
“2001” opened at the Golden Gate June 20th 1968
moved over to the Penthouse Nov. 11, 1969
opened at the Coronet April 29, 1970
“Hello Dolly” opened at the Cinema 21 Dec. 18th, 1969
“Tower Inferno” opened at the Parkside & Alexandria Dec. 20th 1974

Eric on May 24, 2005 at 2:53 pm

Drove by just the other day. The theatre is still just standing there doing nothing. Sure, the store fronts are rented (they’ve got to pay that $6 million mortgage somehow), but why not just leave it open showing movies? Why just leave it closed not doing anything? What a waste.

br91975 on May 9, 2005 at 9:17 am

Any news to report on the present state of and how the future of the Alexandria stands?

Manwithnoname on February 11, 2005 at 4:09 pm

One more comment:

The ‘70’s was a sad decade for films as evidenced by the many reissues and the lackluster first run bookings. Only a few such as French Connection and California Split stand out.

Manwithnoname on February 11, 2005 at 4:03 pm

Dr. Zhivago: released in 1965 but re-released in the 70’s when it played here.

My Fair Lady released 1964
Hello, Dolly released 1969
2001: released 1968 and advertised as a Cinerama film
Towering Inferno: released 1974 and appears to have played first run but as it was in wide release could have played 2 houses.

The post states that some of the listed films are reissues.

FoxFan on February 11, 2005 at 3:10 pm

Interesting…BUT some of these bookings are incorrect as I remember seeing the following at a different Theatre…

DR. ZHIVAGO…….Orpheum (reserved seats)

MY FAIR LADY….. Coronet (reserved seats)

HELLO, DOLLY….. Cinema 21 (reserved seats)

2001; SPACE………Coronet (reserved seats)

TOWERING INFERNO..Parkside regular policy

Somebody gave someone the incorrect info….they may have played SUB RUN, but not first run because I remember buying the tickets in advance (to the reserved ones) and seeing them at the above mentioned Theatres.

ANTKNEE on February 11, 2005 at 2:43 pm

While the theater is indeed closed, it is NOT gone….just drove by it last night (today is 2/11/05 Friday). Everything is still intact and even the neon parking lot sign is still lit.

Patsy on February 7, 2005 at 1:53 pm

Don’t see many theatres listed as having Egyptian style and it’s GONE! So sad! :–(

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on December 28, 2004 at 3:55 am

By coincidence, I happen to have a copy of the San Francisco Chronicle dated Wed Nov 24, 1976, which according to the introduction to this theatre above, was the opening date of the Alexandria as a triple screen cinema.

Films advertised on this date were;
Screen 1. “Shout at the Devil” + “Hard Times"
Screen 2. "Super Bug, Super Agent” + “Magic Christmas Tree"
Screen 3. "Singing in the Rain” + “The Wizard of Oz”

Evening shows only with the main feature showing twice, commencing at 6:30pm.

Ron3853 on December 11, 2004 at 5:33 am

Part of the history of a great motion picture theater is the films that played there. Listed below are the first-run films and major reissues that played at the Alexandria from January 1, 1960 to December 31, 1975. Research is from microfilms of Variety as well as The San Francisco Chronicle. The dates listed are the Wednesday of the opening week since in those days most new films opened on Wednesdays, rather than Fridays as they do now. In the early 1960’s the Alexandria was one of San Francisco’s major houses for “roadshow” films, and subsequently, was DARK between engagements. Films from January 1, 1976 will be provided in subsequent postings.

01/01/60 DARK
05/18/60 Can-Can
10/26/60 The Alamo
02/08/61 Exodus
10/18/61 Breakfast at Tiffany's
12/20/61 El Cid
06/27/62 My Geisha
10/10/62 The Longest Day
02/27/63 To Kill a Mockingbird
06/26/63 Cleopatra
07/22/64 The Fall of the Roman Empire
09/02/64 I’d Rather Be Rich
09/23/64 Woman of Straw
10/14/64 Where Love Has Gone
11/04/64 Topkapi
12/23/64 Kiss Me, Stupid
02/10/65 How to Murder Your Wife
04/07/65 The Train
06/30/65 What’s New, Pussycat?
09/01/65 Darling
09/29/65 Ship of Fools
11/24/65 King Rat
12/22/65 Boeing, Boeing
01/26/66 Lord Love a Duck
03/16/66 Viva, Maria!
03/30/66 The Group
06/22/66 The Russians are Coming…The Russians are Coming
08/03/66 Walk, Don’t Run
10/05/66 Diabolique
10/26/66 The Fortune Cookie
12/21/66 A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum
02/15/67 The Deadly Affair
03/22/67 The Happening
05/03/67 Casino Royale
06/28/67 Woman Times Seven
08/09/67 Luv
09/06/67 The Tiger and the Pussycat
09/20/67 The Trip
12/20/67 Counterpoint/The Jokers
01/31/68 Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner
04/03/68 The Secret War of Harry Frigg
05/15/68 A Man for All Seasons/To Sir, With Love
06/19/68 Boom
07/17/68 Anzio
08/07/68 The Producers
10/09/68 The Heart is a Lonely Hunter
12/18/68 Oliver!
10/15/69 Journey to the Far Side of the Sun
11/05/69 Thank You All Very Much/Lock Up Your Daughters
11/19/69 Don’t Drink the Water
12/17/69 Viva, Max!
02/04/70 The Magic Christian
03/25/70 The Adventurers
05/13/70 Goodbye, Mr. Chips
06/03/70 Rider on the Rain
06/24/70 The Out-of-Towners
07/29/70 On a Clear Day You Can See Forever
11/11/70 WUSA
12/23/70 Cromwell
02/17/71 My Fair Lady
03/31/71 Waterloo
06/23/71 The Anderson Tapes
08/18/71 The Love Machine
11/24/71 The French Connection
02/02/72 Nicholas and Alexandra
05/24/72 Confessions of a Police Captain
06/07/72 Patton
06/14/72 Hello, Dolly!
06/28/72 Last of the Red Hot Lovers
07/19/72 The Other
10/04/72 Doctor Zhivago
10/11/72 Gone With the Wind
10/18/72 2001: A Space Odyssey
10/25/72 The Valachi Papers
12/20/72 The Poseidon Adventure
04/11/73 Class of ‘44
05/23/73 Hitler: The Last 10 Days
06/27/73 The Friends of Eddie Coyle
08/08/73 The Mackintosh Man
09/19/73 The Stone Killer
10/24/73 Westworld
12/19/73 Papillon
03/27/74 The Three Musketeers
06/26/74 For Pete’s Sake
08/07/74 Pink Floyd
08/21/74 California Split
09/18/74 Doctor Zhivago
10/16/74 The Odessa File
12/18/74 The Towering Inferno
05/21/75 The French Connection II
06/25/75 Bite the Bullet
09/24/75 Mysteries Beyond the Earth
10/08/75 Royal Flash
11/26/75 The Human Factor
12/25/75 Lucky Lady

Eric on November 26, 2004 at 8:59 am

There is a full photo tour of the Alexandria’s last day posted on Check it out!

br91975 on November 16, 2004 at 7:16 pm

Now that Proposition L has been rejected by San Francisco voters, are there any updates to report on the Alexandria or any other city theatres which had been facing (and now again may be facing)demolition or conversion for other uses?

Divinity on October 25, 2004 at 12:13 pm

And that is even more reason to preserve it. Come up with a smear campaign that will make them appear to be corporate giants depriving the community of treasures. Handcuff yourselves to it if you must.

It wont hurt.

ANTKNEE on October 20, 2004 at 8:41 pm

Please pardon my previous typos…what I meant to say was:
“when big dollar people are involved, there ain’t jack….”

ANTKNEE on October 20, 2004 at 8:39 pm

I understand what you’re saying, but the reality is that the value of real estate in SF is such that when the big dollar people are involved their act jack that can realistically be done to prevent them from their doing what they want. I’m from NYC and distinctly recall that in the ‘60s one of the few remaining 5th Ave mansions was torn down over a weekend in defiance of a court order. Case closed.

Divinity on October 20, 2004 at 5:45 pm

Stop complaining about it and call the newspapers, tv stations, chain yourself to it if you love it so much! Save this piece of history and PROTEST PEOPLE!!!

You have the power to make it happen! I would love to help but I live in New York.

ANTKNEE on October 20, 2004 at 3:13 pm

To paraphrase what was written in the NY Times upon the demolition of the grandiose Pennsylvania Railroad Station “In the future we will be judged not for what we’ve built, but for what we’ve torn down”

FoxFan on October 20, 2004 at 2:26 pm

I just heard its going to be demolished soon. Hence the quick 45 day moratorium. Something is a foot in San Francisco!

BobWasserman on October 20, 2004 at 2:23 pm

Mr. Hooper, thanks so much for the photo’s. I used to live in a studio apartment off 15th ave and Geary Blvd after doing time in the Army in the mid-sixties. I couldn’t afford a TV so I’d save my extra cash and take in a movie at the Alexandria. “Oliver” etc. By the way……the studio apartment was $85.00 a month. Tee Hee.
Been living in Denver since 1972 and we’ve lost many of the old movie palaces. We’ve managed to hang onto the Paramount downtown and our Great Lady called the Mayan on South Broadway. It’s owned by Landmark and show’s art-films. It was once a huge single screen now its three. The two screens upstairs are extremely uncomfortable as your knees are in your face its soooo tight, not to mention the “rake” of the stairs to get to the rows of seats. I’ve seen many a patron take a tumble. Thanks again for the photo’s. Bob in Denver.