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The New England exclusive engagement of “Star Wars” was at the Charles, as mentioned previously in this discussion, and began May 25, 1977. The engagement upgraded to a 70mm presentation in September 1977 (which was also a New England exclusive).
I believe “Close Encounters Of The Third Kind” was the first movie to play at River Oaks in 70mm & six-track Dolby. I think the Dolby CP100 was installed in the fall of ‘77 just before that engagement.
I find it surprising that the Chicago area did not run a 70mm version of “Star Wars” until around Christmas ‘77 when the film moved to the Oakbrook.
“I worked at the Cooper during the 1977 Star Wars frenzy. I have some great memories of the theatre and staff. If there are other photos of the interior, I would also enjoy seeing them.” (GaryJB)
Did you work in the projection booth? Do you recall the Cooper upgrading to a 70mm presentation in August 1977, then giving up the print to the Continental in December to make way for “Close Encounters”?
I don’t have any photos of the theater’s interior, though I do have a copy of the Denver Post from the day after “Empire” opened which included a great picture of a massive line of fans with the theater and its marquee visible in the shot.
“I have a feeling we have worked together or at least know a lot of the same National Amusements people.” (vito)
When, where, and whom?
“The Glenwood quickly became the most popular theater in the Kansas City area, setting the world record for ‘Star Wars’ after making $1 million the first year of its release.” (Keith LeBrun)
May I ask your source for this information? I ask because the information I have is that the Astor Plaza in New York City had the world record gross for the original run of “Star Wars,” where in its 61-week engagement it sold nearly $4 million in tickets.
If the Coronet in San Francisco hadn’t been forced (no pun intended) to end its engagement early it might have held the top-gross record for “Star Wars” as it had the top U.S. gross as of Dec. 1977 when the run expired.
And speaking of the “Star Wars” series, the Glenwood made the news in 1983 when it was reported that their 70mm print of “Return Of The Jedi” was stolen at gunpoint. Any of you from the Kansas City area remember this? (I’ll try to locate the newspaper article about this incident if anyone desires more info.)
“Michael, do we know one another?” (Vito)
Only in cyberspace.
“6/11/69 the Demille played "Dr. Zhivago” for one week at popular prices and continuous performances. The ad does not say if it was 35 or 70mm."
What does the “70mm in NY” article over at www.FromScriptToDVD.com say? :)
“In the early 80’s, I am not sure of the exact year, ABC sold out to Plitt Theatres.” (StanMalone)
The switch from ABC to Plitt (Southern) took place between December 1978 and May 1980. Sorry, don’t have the exact date.
Perhaps the Dolby website refers to the date of equipment purchase or order. I do not have access to that type of info, but have to rely on my fading memory of the times.(StanMalone)
I do not believe such info appears on the Dolby site. In fact, you’ll be hard-pressed to locate much, if any, info on the old days of Dolby CP50s & CP100s. Email me if you’d like more info on install dates.
“Around the opening of "Close Encounters” (Dec. 14 or 21, 1977), four Atlanta area theatres had Dolby Stereo (CP50): Phipps Penthouse, Buford Hwy Twin, Mableton, and Stonemont.“ (Michael Coate)
As for the Stonemont and the correct Dolby date I have no explanation. In those days, films were released in both Dolby and non Dolby prints. It is possible that ABC was going to open Close Encounters in Dolby at both locations but could only get a mono print for Stonemont.(StanMalone)
In checking some data, it looks like during the Dec. ‘77/Jan. '78 timeframe, there was another Dolby-equipped venue in the Atlanta area: a house in Jonesboro.
I don’t have any opening day or week ads for the Atlanta engagements of “Close Encounters.” I do, however, have one from April 1978, and both the Phipps Penthouse and Stonemont were promoting Dolby Stereo for their “CE3K” showings. “An Incredible Experience” with the “Dolby System” logo centered between the two theatre names.
“By 1960, Interstate needed another 70mm Roadshow House in Houston, so the Alabama was chosen. It played LAWRENCE OF ARABIA, and of course, THE SOUND OF MUSIC.” (Ennis C. Adkins)
“I read that The Sound of Music was at this theatre. TSOM ran for many weeks and broke record attendances!” (Patsy)
The Alabama’s roadshow engagement of “The Sound Of Music” lasted for 90 weeks (Mar. 31, 1965 – Dec. 18, 1966).
“Early 1962 the Warner Hollywood Theatre, long one of the nation’s most celebrated theatres went though it’s second to last remodel….” (William)
“William, you just copied text from a page on my web site” (Roland)
Actually, William’s “text” has more typos than what appears on your site. :)
Seriously… Roland, very little of what appears on your website is original, so I don’t think suggesting that someone “stole” from you is appropriate. Nonetheless, William — and ALL Cinema Treasures members, for that matter — should consider citing sources when making a post.
The map link did not work! Was this theatre in Nashville proper, or was it in Belle Meade?
“I was living in Hollywood when the Warner’s theater was showing ‘This is Cinerama’ for the years 1953/56. After 56 or 57 they started showing other pictures. Correct me.” (clvee)
“I hadn’t realized that ‘regular’ movies were programmed in between runs of Cinerama films” (stevebob)
THE ORIGINAL 3-STRIP CINERAMA ENGAGEMENTS FOR THIS THEATRE
[Note that the films were not shown in the sequence in which they were produced and exhibited in their world premiere New York City engagements.]
This Is Cinerama … 4/29/53 – 11/13/55 (133 weeks)
Cinerama Holiday … 11/14/55 – 6/2/57 (81 weeks)
Seven Wonders Of The World … 6/5/57 – 9/28/58 (69 weeks)
South Seas Adventure … 10/1/58 – 2/7/60 (71 weeks)
Search For Paradise … 2/11/60 – 10/30/60 (38 weeks)
RETURN ENGAGEMENTS (with premiere date and engagement duration)
This Is Cinerama … 11/2/60 (22 weeks)
Cinerama Holiday … 4/4/61 (7 weeks)
Seven Wonders Of The World … 5/23/61 (16 weeks)
NON-CINERAMA, NON-ROADSHOW ENGAGEMENTS SHOWN 9/11/61 – 8/6/62
MORE 3-STRIP CINERAMA ENGAGEMENTS
The Wonderful World Of The Brothers Grimm … 8/7/62 (28 weeks)
How The West Was Won … 2/20/63 (93 weeks)
70MM ENGAGEMENTS PROMOTED AS CINERAMA
Circus World … 12/18/64 (16 weeks)
Mediterranean Holiday … 4/9/65 (11 weeks)
The Hallelujah Trail … 6/23/65 (26 weeks)
Cinerama’s Russian Adventure … 5/3/66 (13 weeks)
2001: A Space Odyssey … 4/4/68 … (80 weeks)
Re the name of the theatre. The building and its marquee has been covered in this discussion. As far as the newspaper advertisements, the theatre name varied, depending on the film and the ad, between “Warner Hollywood,” “Warner Hollywood Cinerama,” and “Warner Cinerama.” During the course of the 18-month “2001: A Space Odyssey” engagement, ownership changed hands from Stanley-Warner to Pacific, and the name changed again to “Hollywood Pacific.”
Los Angeles Times
unpublished Cinerama history article
“Dolby was added to the #2 side in 1978.”
“…it took the booking of Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band to finally get Dolby installed.” (StanMalone)
Dolby’s listings of equipped theatres indicate the Stonemont was equipped as of November 1977. Is it possible the theatre simply never received any Dolby-encoded prints until “Sgt. Pepper” in the summer of ‘78?
(Stan: also see my recent comments in the entry for Phipps Plaza)
The Penthouse… in 1977 scored a first with the premiere of Dolby Stereo in Atlanta when Close Encounters opened. (I know there are people who will dispute this. There were a few other Dolby equipped theatres in Atlanta, and some of them were playing movies that had previously opened in mono, like Star Wars, but Close Encounters was the first movie to premiere in Dolby in Atlanta.) (StanMalone)
This isn’t a dispute, just an elaboration.
You’re correct re “Star Wars.” It opened in Atlanta in mono on June 29, 1977, then upgraded to a Dolby Stereo presentation around Christmas. (“Exclusive Engagement: For The First Time In Atlanta — DOLBY SOUND — You May Have SEEN ‘Star Wars’ But For The First Time HEAR It!”)
The first Dolby install in Atlanta was at a place called Films, Inc. However, I don’t think this was a commercial cinema, so your statement re the Phipps Penthouse being the first to present to the public a film in Dolby Stereo appears to be correct…though only by a matter of days.
Around the opening of “Close Encounters” (Dec. 14 or 21, 1977), four Atlanta area theatres had Dolby Stereo (CP50): Phipps Penthouse, Buford Hwy Twin, Mableton, and Stonemount.
During the week of Christmas 1977, three movies were playing Dolby Stereo engagements in the Atlanta area: (1) “Close Encounters Of The Third Kind” at Phipps Penthouse, (2) “Saturday Night Fever” at Mableton, (3) “Star Wars” at Buford Hwy.
“This was the first area theater to get Dolby Stereo (4, & 6 Track) and showed "Star Wars” exclusively for almost two years.“ (from intro, Sly Dog)
Dolby CP100 installed in September 1977. (“Star Wars” opened in May so, yes, this means they ran the movie in MONO for the first few months.)
The Cine Capri engagement of “Star Wars” ran for 60 weeks (May 25, 1977 – July 20, 1978). That’s certainly a loooong time, but isn’t 60 weeks a lot closer to one year than the two claimed in the theatre intro? Perhaps people think of these types of situations as being two-year engagements since the run ocurred over the span of two separate calendar years….
“It started as a 9-plex…” (BEARoxy)
I’ve never attended a movie at this theater so I am unfamiliar with its grand opening or expansion history. However, I do have a spring 1981 newspaper ad for “Outland” which indicated the theater at the time was a 6-plex.
“Does anyone know what date The Sound of Music opened at the New Theatre in Baltimore?”
Mar. 24, 1965
“The Amboy Multiplex was one of the few theatres in the area that had 70MM with Mag stereo. Still has a 70MM Century JJ running, but hasn’t shown 70 in years” (BEARoxy)
“I remember waiting with my parents on a 2 hour line to see Indiana Jones and the last crusade in 70 mm on opening night.” (member)
For a listing of the other 70mm presentations at this theater, see View link
“These all must’ve been designed, built and owned (at first) by the same company, National Amusements.” (CConnolly)
Yes, although the company until 1987 or ‘88 was known as Redstone.
These Redstone/National Amusements complexes in the NYC area seem to have been called “… Multiplex,” whereas in other parts of the country, such as New England and the midwest, they named them “Showcase Cinemas…”
The engagement of “This Is Cinerama” at the Dome you are referring to was a 70mm presentation, not a 3-strip Cinerama. Its Dome run began Feb. 15, 1973 and ran for about three months.
Any statements or article references to the Dome not running 3-strip Cinerama until a couple of years ago remain correct.
I posted this in the other “Sound Of Music” thread (“The Sound Of Music — 40 Years!”), but I think it is appropriate here too. Plus, the Moorhead Theater, the subject of this thread, is included in the article to which I will provide a link.
Related to the film’s anniversary is a tribute article and original roadshow engagement list that I’ve been working on for a while. I think this is right up the alley of the average Cinema Treasures regular, so I’d like to bring this to your attention in case you’re not already aware of it.
View link (for the Moorhead reference, scroll down to the October 1965 section)
Non-fans of “The Sound Of Music” and those unfamiliar with the roadshow era will likely not understand or appreciate the list. But those of you who are fans of the movie and/or understand the appeal of the roadshow-style presentations will probably like the list and will “get” the nostalgia and history.
“During the 1970’s and through to 1983 it became part of the Pussycat chain of cinemas playing adult porn movies. In 1983 it was completely re-decorated, with new stage draperies, new seats and a Dolby sound system was installed…” (Ken Roe)
I don’t think the years or Dolby-install data is correct. The Eagle was booking first-run studio films during 1980, some of them advertising Dolby Stereo presentations.
“When will the Downtown Mann have its own listing on Cinema Treasures? Budyboy, do you know enough about it to post one?” (Jesse Hoheisel)
An interesting book on the subject of Minneapolis area movie theaters is “Show Houses: Twin Cities Style” by Kirk J. Besse (Victoria, 1995).