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my fellow posters have always been most kind in
answering my questions. this time I have a good
one on a subject that I find interesting.the prime
roadshow period was the Oct. 1955 opening of
“Oklahoma” at the Rivoli thru the Dec.1972 opening of “The Man of La Mancha” also at the Rivoli. now
in this a bit over 17 year period the studios
heavily used 7 Times Square theaters for their
roadshow engagements(Criterion, Loew’s State, RKO
Palace,Demille,Warner, Rivoli and the Loew’s
Capitol). which is where my question comes in.
Regardless of how good a film turned out to be if
a film played at one of these 7 theaters it can
be classified as a prominent release. so can
anyone think of a prominent roadshow engagement at
any of the 7 theaters named above that did not
have a souvenir program? every roadshow engagement
I ever went to had a souvenir program so I can’t
imagine a prominent roadshow run not having one.
I can’t stand the reclining seats the 84th multiplex
has. for one if you a big person and I don’t mean
overweight just big your leg is constantly pressing up
against the button with opens the chair. its almost
impossible if you are a big person to just sit in the
chair in a regular fashion comfortably.
also the pricing at 84th St. is highway robbery.
ticket prices for 1st run theaters in Manhattan are
already to high. yet the 84 St. forces you to pay
more for a “reserved seat” even if there are only 5
people in the theater.
thanks for the info on Cheyenne Autumn. another
question. from when i went with my parents to
when i started going by myself one thing i always
liked about reserved seat engagements was buying
the souvenir program in the lobby during
intermission. i have approx. 135 in my collection
most of which i bought at theaters. others were
purchased in memorabilia stores. which is where
my question comes in. did Cheyenne Autumn have a
souvenir program? i can’t imagine a big epic like
CA with a big director and big stars released on
a reserved seat engagement not having a souvenir
program. yet in all memorabilia stores i have
been to and all the online memorabilia sites i
have looked at i have never seen one. in fact
there are a few others big even award winning
reserved seat films i have never come across a
souvenir program for. i always thought roadshow
engagements and souvenir programs were inseparable
like peanut butter and jelly.
thanks for the info. just to be sure another
question or two. i assume Stevens longest cut
at 4 hrs. 20 mins. like Mankiewicz’s 5 hr. 20 min.
cut of Cleopatra was never theatrically shown .
now was the 238 min. cut you refer to used just
for the World Premiere night screening or
was it used for the entire roadshow run the
Warner. in other words how long was the 238min.
cut used at the Warner and at what point did
they switch to the 3hr. 19 min. cut used on the
blu-ray. i am wondering if the premiere 238min cut
actually shows Sal Mineo’s being killed. to have
him walking in the crowd at the Temple than the
next time you see him he’s dead lying on the
altar steps you just know something was cut.
to AL A-
you are always quite helpful with my questions.
to which could you please go to the Strand/Warner
Cinerama page and see if with your font of
knowledge you can answer my question about The
Greatest Story Ever Told which opened at that
theater Feb. of 1965. thank you.:–)
i recently bought the blu-ray disc of The
Greatest Story Ever Told. the running time
of the disc is 3 hrs. 19 mins.. which is
where my question comes in. the liner
notes on the back cover say-“restored to
its theatrical brilliance with Overture and
Intermission”. now i saw TGSET twice during
its Cinerama reserved seat engagement but
can’t remember what the running time was.
now i recently found out the original
running time of the roadshow run print was
3 hrs. 45 mins. but did the Warner Cinerama
ever play that print or did it only play
the 3 hr. 19 min. print?
a case in point. there’s the scene towards
the end where Jesus is talking at night time
to a large crows at the Temple. you see
Roman soldiers pushing in then it switches
to another scene. the next time see Jesus
he’s entering the house where the Last
Supper takes place. but then there’s a quick
cut back to the Temple we see are a few dead
bodies scattered around including the young
former cripple (Sal Mineo)lying across the altar steps. what happened to the scene of the
Roman soldiers aggressively dispursing the
crowd resulting in the dead bodies we see?
thanks to William for the tech info. a additional
question. I don’t know what the dimensions of the
screen was when How The West Was Won played here
starting April 1963. to which my question- when
Cheyenne Autumn opened here Dec. 1964 how much of
the screen that the HTWWW projection covered was
covered by CA projection?
also I wanted to ask a question about The Greatest
Story Ever Told so anyone who is knowledgeable about
the Warner Cinerama please take a look at that
page. thank you.
its nice to know the sending of messages has
returned. i guess the disruption will remain
now a few weeks back i mentioned i was 99% sure
that Cheyenne Autumn which opened here Dec.1964 was
a single lens Cinerama film or as the ads would said-
“presented in Cinerama”. i had no newspaper ads or
mail order forms to back my 99% certainty. now
my fellow posters have stated in reply that this
was not the case. so trying to figure a reason for
my 99% certainty maybe i read an ad that said
something like “see it on the giant Cinerama
screen” since the Cinerama was still up maybe
they figured lets use it as a selling point.
Opps I forgot to add an interesting note.for about
a month now I have not received any messages in my
inbox that theaters in Manhattan that I am on the list
for have received new comments. these notes on
Cheyenne Autumn being an example. I only realized they
were posted because I looked this page up.
to Peter A.–
thanks for the info. one’s memory does play tricks
on you and I guess this is an instance. I don’t
know why I thought this. its just i swear I can
remember seeing an ad in a NYC newspaper at the time
of its opening. oh,well.
i hope my fellow fans of the late but great Loew’s
Capitol/Cinerama can answer a question. John Ford’s
“Cheyenne Autumn” opened the fall of 1964 on a
reserved seat engagement. this is where my question
comes in. i wouldn’t bet my next paycheck but i am
99% certain that the film was one of the 10 or so
single lens Cinerama films. now i can find no
newspaper ads or copies of the mail order form and
like stuff online to bolster my claim. so was
“Cheyenne Autumn” one of the 10 or so films presented
“in Cinerama” or not? again i’m 99% certain it was.
to Ed S.–
i’m guessing the pic above is fairly new since the building was torn rather recently.
a few questions.
1.while the building was standing for almost 100
years it hadn’t been a movie theater for decades.
so what would you say is the longest lived movie
theater built as such and operated as such? my
guess would be the Bunny at Bway & 145 St.. it
opened Dec. 1913 and closed the fall of 2010?
the runner up i’m guessing would be the Coliseum
at Bway & 181 St, which opened in 1920 and closed
at the fall of 2012.
2.in the listing of comments for this theater is
one that states a rare photo of the façade can be
found on nyc.org. I tried finding it but zippo.
I can’t help but wonder if its the same photo in
the issue of Motion Picture News from the beginning
I watched the re-mastered blu-ray disc released
last year by Kino Video. the visual/audio quality
was fine. its just I was quite surprised by how
much of a B movie look and feel it had both
technically and artistically.
the 1st time i visited San Francisco was 1980
and the last time was 8? years ago. my point
being simple. in the early years they hosted
many different types of gay porn stars. boy
next door types, Abecrombie & Fitch model
types as well studly masculine types. yet in the
8 years since my last visit the only gay porn
stars they seem to host are studly masculine
types. what gives? isn’t variety the spice of
thanks for your take on the subject. during the
often pined for Golden Age of Hollywood I was
always under the impression there was a distinct
look and feel too an A film that would be different
from that of a B film. so that’s why I’m kind of
shocked BOP would have been classified as an A film
when it opened at the Mayfair considering its
very B film production values.
very interesting and depressing pics. the Mayfair/
Demille/Embassy 1-2-3 was in uneven shape sad to
say before closing. fortunately my parents took me
to as many roadshow films as possible so at least
I got to see the theater when it was still in
un-triplexed prime shape.
also when I looked at your pics in the photo
section I noticed the ad for Bird of Paradise.
i’m assuming it was the film’s 1st run premiere
run and not a move over from another theater.
which is where my question comes in- was BOP
considered an A level as opposed to B level film?
I purchased the blu-ray disc put out by Kino Video
last year and thought it was a sub-par film both
technically and artistically. I didn’t think
King Vidor was capable of making such a crappy
Hello From NYC-
I was under the assumption that the Uptown was a
1st run venue from the get go. but I read it was
actually built as a grand neighborhood theater and
only became a 1st run venue with the advent of the
modern roadshow era in the fall of 1955. so is
there a way of finding a list of all the roadshow
films that played the Uptown?
a question for my fellow fans of the late but great
Capitol. nowadays big films will open on 2 to 3
thousand screens on the same day. now in Manhattan
every so often one of these big films will stay
at a theater or two for quite some time. which brings
me to my question. in the photo section is an ad
for “Mata Hari” that states at the top “held over for
3rd and final week”. to which did films at the Capitol
during this period never play for all that long no
matter how much of a hit they were?
I am now more confused than ever. I have read on
more than one occasion that The Wizard of Oz which
opened at this theater never really ignited the box
office even after MGM tried various catchy ad
campaigns and its books only entered the black
when it was sold to t.v.. Al A.’s reply seems to
confirm this. yet Mike’s post makes it seem like
it was a big box office hit. so which is the case?
Hello to AL A.–
as always I thank you for your font of knowledge.
so if I understand your reply correctly the story
I related in my question is more or less true?
since The Wizard of Oz debuted at this theater
a question. we all assume the film was a big box
office hit when it opened Sept. of 1939 I believe.
but I have read more than once that while it
wasn’t a flop per se it never really ignited the
box office to any great extent. in fact since this
was the time when the studios still controlled the
theaters MGM tried to jump start the film with
ingenious ad campaigns but the public never really
bit. to which the film only became this beloved
classic after it started airing on t.v. in 1954?
is this true?
a bit of info fellow Capitol Theater devotees will
find interesting. the Loew’s Lincoln Square has each
of the auditoriums named after a famed Loew’s movie
palace. to the right of the entrance to each
auditorium is a plaque with info about the honored
theater. the plaque for the Capitol states the theater
was torn down at the end of 1967. I’ve mentioned it
to management several times but they don’t seem to
care about the incorrect info.
I have often asked questions about reserved seat
runs at this and nearby theaters. to which a
question- does anyone know of a first rate store
in Manhattan that sells souvenir programs? or
possibly a website? there are many original roadshow
films I saw in but at my neighborhood theater.
usually souvenir programs were only sold in the
initial exclusive 1st run theater.
to Robert E.–
thanks for the info. if I understand your reply
correctly the name Mark I-II-III was on the marquee
briefly. it must have been really brief with a
capital B since as I said I never remember that
name being on the marquee.
another question. was the tri-plexing of the
theater done by the people who wanted it has an
adult house or was it done by an independent
contractor and then the lease snatched up by the
porn people? which of course never came to
like you I miss the great old movie theaters
of the Times Square Area. fortunately the Capitol
was never twinned like the Rivoli of triplexed
like the Demille. as much as these theaters were
loved by movie buffs isn’t the primary reason
for their demolition is they were economically
unviable as a single screen movie theater. for
instance the Roxy’s huge size was great for
1927 but by the spring of 1960 said size was its
own worst enemy.