Paris Theatre

4 West 58th Street,
New York, NY 10019

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Showing 51 - 75 of 182 comments

MPol
MPol on November 13, 2008 at 7:39 am

Beautiful article. Thanks for sharing.

CelluloidHero2
CelluloidHero2 on September 5, 2008 at 1:57 am

Gerald,

Would you mind if I used your add of Gold of Naples or La Fuga ads on my blog? It’s an movie website and one of my sections is dedicated to classic movies theaters anchored by photos I have taken. With the 60th anniversary of the Paris coming up next week I am adding this theater to the blog and thought the ads would be a good illustration. Here’s a link.

http://twentyfourframes.wordpress.com/

RobertR
RobertR on May 27, 2008 at 5:57 am

I remember playing Vincent and Theo at the Cinemart and getting complaints about the dialogue being muffled and inaudible. I guess it was no different at the Paris.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on May 27, 2008 at 3:52 am

This 1954 Italian film, featuring a young Sophia Loren in one episode, opened at the Paris in early 1957, shorn of two of its six episodes.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on May 27, 2008 at 3:47 am

I sit in the balcony, have for many movies now, never missed a word of dialogue. Sound is great, in my opinion, in the Paris.

edblank
edblank on May 26, 2008 at 9:34 pm

The Paris almost certainly is the single-screen art house I’ve visited most often in NYC, partly because it was such a classy high-grossing theater and therefore had access to the choicest bookings.

I had just returned from Vietnam to be discharged from the Army at Fort Dix and headed straight for nine days in NYC in August 1967 for a movie and Broadway binge (I was a whole year behind on movies and had seen only a couple of Broadway shows previously, so I was a kid in a candy store) before embarking on the rest of my life.

The first movie I saw after dropping off my duffle bag in a cheap hotel was “A Man and a Woman,” which I was aware was in its 52nd week at the Paris. Since then I’ve seen several dozen fine movies there including “Howards End,” “Remains of the Day,” “The Browning Version” and “Ladies in Lavender.”

One couldn’t help but notice over the years that the patrons were invariably older and more likely to dress up a little to go to the movies.

The only mildly negative experience I ever had at the Paris was when I attended “Vincent and Theo” and noticed that the balcony was open. (Is it always open?) Anyway, I decided to make that moviegoing experience a bit different by watching Altman’s film from the balcony. To my dismay, I could hardly make out the dialogue at all.

No one else here has indicated having a hearing problem in the Paris' balcony, so the acoustical problem that afternoon may have been a fluke, occurring only in a specific area of the balcony. That can happen, for example, if few orchestra seats are occupied and the sound lines somehow are caught off kilter.

The longtime manager of a bygone Pittsburgh legitimate theater/playhouse called the Nixon once explained there were a couple of acoustical dead spots in the front mezz of his theater. Later I found that was true in other theaters, especially in their balconies.

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on February 20, 2008 at 12:13 pm

jacobs entertainment is the film buyer for my theater so talk with them daily..

LuisV
LuisV on February 20, 2008 at 11:08 am

Thanks LI, that makes me happy. I think New York has the best chance of keeping the Paris as an active movie house when it’s in the hands of a billionaire who has lots of other money and doesn’t need another source of major cash.

I kind of have the same thoughts about the Fisher family owning the Ziegfeld. I would hope that they realize what a treasure that theater is and would not sell it or gut it just for profit. I understand that it is under a long term land lease, but I’m not sure how long it is for. I guess that is for discussion on The Ziegfeld’s page. I would just hope that it is landmarked before that lease is up.

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on February 20, 2008 at 8:36 am

Solow does still own tbe theater.It is managed by Jacobs Entertainment.

LuisV
LuisV on February 20, 2008 at 6:18 am

So is this theater still operated by Solow? The site of the Paris has to be one of the most valuable retail sites in the city; especially now that the Plaza has been redone. The Solow Tower gets some of the highest office rents in the city and it is obvious that Solow (if in fact he still runs the Paris) he is not totally focussed on money. Anybody else who held the Paris probably would have sold out to retail a long time ago. Hopefully, The Paris will be around for decades to come. Like many comments above, I agree that this small house shows that you don’t have to be big to be a palace. This intimate theater is about understated elegance and it is a pleasure to see a film in.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on February 3, 2008 at 2:37 am

This obscure film from Italy (La Fuga, about a lesbian relationship), played here in March 1966.

dave-bronx™
dave-bronx™ on February 2, 2008 at 6:39 pm

The lease had expired and the landlord had no intention of negotiating a new one with Pathe, he had made a deal with Loews. I was the manager at the time and I handed the keys over to the Loews people. Pathe had intended to open up at a different location and use the Paris name there, and they removed their signs from the 58th St. theatre which we donated to the Museum of the Moving Image over in Astoria. Sheldon Solow and Loews (landlord and partner) re-named the theatre Fine Arts. Pathe’s local representative was scouting out locations. Shortly thereafter, Pathe in France, fell on hard times and the French equivalent of bankruptcy and reorganization. Their plans for a replacement outlet in New York were scrapped and their local representative let go. It was after this that the Paris signs went back up at the theatre at 4 W. 58th St. Still later, the Loews/Solow partnership broke up, and Solow went solo with the Paris.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on February 2, 2008 at 2:43 pm

Pathe did not return.

Loews renamed their theaters Sony after its owner, but after merger with Cineplex Odeon, the Loews name returned. So, Sony and Loews was the same operator. I think Loews stayed longer. My notes indicte maybe until 1997. When Sony Lincoln Square opened, arthouse movies often began there.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on February 2, 2008 at 2:38 pm

In September of 1990 Pathe lost their lease at this location. They decided to re-open elsewhere so they removed the marquee and moved out. Loews took over and renamed the location LOEWS FINE ARTS.

In late 1992 it became LOEWS PARIS FINE ARTS and by summer 1993 it was the PARIS once again without Loews' involvement. Either Pathe returned or the landlord bought the rights to the name, as it never did open elsewhere.

Advertisements and the marquee were changed and news stories are available along with a “goodbye” ad in the NYT from Pathe when they lost the lease.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on February 2, 2008 at 2:33 pm

It is no secret, but well known. I think it was after Pathe’s lease was up, when Sony leased it that Fine Arts was the name.

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on February 2, 2008 at 2:29 pm

i can find out monday as there film buyer books my theater..

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on February 2, 2008 at 10:34 am

Fine Arts should be listed as an alternative name for this location although it was only for a short time in the early nineties.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on October 11, 2007 at 8:56 am

Warren, I wrote World Premiere. When it was posted by the editor Premiere became Premier. I understand the spelling has since been changed. As to caps, I like it that way.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on October 11, 2007 at 6:45 am

And one should never start a sentence with “And” either but who really cares.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on October 10, 2007 at 7:04 pm

That’s a shame. I wonder if a theatrical run of CE3K will happen at all for the anniversary. Perhaps the strong numbers for the “Blade Runner” engagement at the Ziegfeld will encourage a booking. Perhaps even via Digital Cinema Presentation (though I know Spielberg is a big proponent of film). Better still would be a 70MM run, but I doubt we’ll be so lucky..

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on October 9, 2007 at 8:14 pm

A week and a half ago, I saw “The Rape of Europa.” Don’t miss! It is a great film. You learn much, but it is also more entertaining than many current commercial feature films!

Ed, I asked about “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” Staff told me it isn’t going to happen despite earlier expectations or hopes. Hmmm…that film had its World Premiere at the Ziegfeld…..

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on September 7, 2007 at 9:43 pm

I wonder what’s going on with plans for a 30th anniversary theatrical run of “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” here. According the theatre’s website, the documentary “The Rape of Europa” will start a run at the Paris on September 14th, right after the current engagement of “La Vie En Rose” ends its long run. No word on CE3K at all at the website.