Roxy Theatre

153 W. 50th Street,
New York, NY 10020

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Showing 1,101 - 1,125 of 1,140 comments

RobertR on April 9, 2004 at 3:01 pm

Although at the end they did play a few double features I think I read.

RobertR on April 9, 2004 at 2:27 pm

Wow Monogram and Republic seem like low end product for the Roxy

Roxymusicco on April 9, 2004 at 2:23 pm

I’m pretty sure that the BEACON was supposed to be called The Roxy Midland or Midtown. Roxy actually apporved of the design and W. W. Ahlschlager wa the architech. The rotunda is a smaller version of the Roxy’s and the BEACON, too, is uilt on an angle with a triangular stage. The theatre building extorior is very similar in design to the Roxy. I think it was around that time that Roxy got involved with Rock Center. From what I could find the Roxy played mostly FOX products along with Monogram and Republic.

BBssbsc on March 26, 2004 at 4:20 pm

Does anyone have insight, information, documentation, etc. on the whereabouts of the grand piano used for stage presentations at the Roxy. Any help would be most greatly appreciated.
Thank you.
Bill B.

dickdziadzio on March 18, 2004 at 11:43 am

On the DVD of WEST SIDE STORY after the music overture – when the overhead camera shots begin -DVD chapter 2, 37 seconds in- freeze the dvd- in the lower right hand corner- they had just demolished
the roof and walls of the ROXY but you can see the orchestra seating grid built at that 45 degree angle between 50th and 51st street. The MUSIC HALL roof can be seen in the left part of the letterboxed image.

richklein on March 18, 2004 at 9:49 am

What was the name of the organ player who played beforw the film

William on February 13, 2004 at 8:36 pm

The man whose name appears on most of the Cinemiracle patents was Russell H. McCullough. He was the director of research and development for National Theatres. National Theatres developed marketed and released the Cinemiracle process. They would later sell the patents to the Cinerama Corp. They opened “Windjammer” in their two high-profile showcase houses the Chinese Theatre in Hollywood and The Roxy in New York City. Each of the theatres closed for about a month to install the new projection booths and the new screens. The Cinemiracle screen was made of conventional seamless material and was substantially less curved than that of Cinerama, being about 120 degrees instead of 146. The benefit of the 120 degree screen is that cross reflections are not as severe, thus the louvre type screen used in Cinerama wasn’t necessary. Century Projector Corp. built the Cinemiracle projectors and have a mechanism considerably altered from the standard 35mm machine to provide the drive for movement of film at Cinemiracle’s 146.25 feet per minute and to handle 8000-foot film reels. To bring Cinemiracle to the public National Theatres spent upwards of a half-million dollars to prepare the Roxy and the Chinese theatres. At the Chinese Theatre, National Theatres put in new seating and recarpeted as well as installing the equipment.
“Windjammer” would play about 23 weeks at the Roxy from 4/9/1958 to 9/17/1958. The Chinese Theatre’s engagement was 4/8/1958 to 12/17/1958 for a total of 36 weeks.

PAULB on February 13, 2004 at 7:38 pm

Well, actually, WINDJAMMER played here in Sydney at the 1150 seat spanish style PLAZA CINERAMA in about 1961 and ran for 6 months. I did see it and have fond memories probably becuase it was a big event at the time. The screen here was 100ft wide; the cinerama films all played long runs here and WINDJAMMER was helped enormously by the visit of the Chilean windjammer ship The Esmerelda which docked in Sydney Harbour at the time. The Plaza on the inside looked like the pic of the exterior of the Roxy above, it was opened in 1933 and closed during the colour TV boom of 1977. It was a breathtaking luxury house and home of long runs BUT the mid 70s were its worst years and it was all over with a lame screening of Mr Billion. Today it is a Macdonalds. An insult to what should still be one of Sydney’s 4 genuine pic palaces. Two survived The State and the Capitol, and two were lost: the Plaza and the Regent.

VincentParisi on February 13, 2004 at 2:29 pm

I’ve heard it was pretty good. Is there anyone out there who saw Windjammer and liked it?

Vito on February 13, 2004 at 1:42 pm

Warren reminded me of that awfull destruction of the Roxy made in 1958, the 100-foot screen installed for Cinemiracle swallowed up the Roxy’s vast proscenium arch, the ornamental boxes and staircases, and then hardly anyone came to see this silly movie

William on February 11, 2004 at 1:20 pm

The original stret address of the Roxy Theatre was 153 W. 50th. Street.

William on February 11, 2004 at 1:18 pm

The Roxy Theatre was operated by the Roxy Theatre, Inc. company which was controlled and owned by National Theatre, Inc. of Los Angeles, California. National Theatres operated select locations under special companies or corperations. Even after the Paramount decree in 1946. Other National Theatre holdings were the Fox West Coast Theatres Corp., Fox Midwest Theatres, Inc., Fox Inter-Mountain Theatres, Inc., Fox Wisconsin Theatres, Inc., Evergreen State Amusement Corp.. National Theatres controls Fox Michigan Corp., which operates the Fox Detroit, Roxy Theatre, Inc. operating the Roxy, in New York and Fox Philadelphia Building , Inc. operating the Fox Phildelphia. National Theatre would later be known as National General Theatres in 60’s and later be sold to Ted Mann in the early 70’s, to become Mann Theatres of California and later to Paramount and Warner Studios to become CineAmerica Theatres.

RobertR on February 10, 2004 at 4:47 pm

I remember reading a story once that studios would delay a release months just to get the Music Hall or the Roxy. This was also true in the 60’s and 70’s for Cinema 1 and 2 when they were the premiere art houses in the whole country. Sadly it seems there are no theatres that have that clout anymore.

William on February 4, 2004 at 3:58 pm

The Warner’s Beverly Hills Theatre was equipped with a pair of Century VistaVision projectors and they also had a pair of Simplex XL machines too. When they pulled the VistaVision projectors out they installed a pair of Norelco DP-70’s, this was a major Road Show Theatre.

PAULB on February 4, 2004 at 8:33 am

Perhaps in 2004, we need to make the distinction with what was actually “possible”:……………… WE all know, there was first run and sub run………..and in ‘those days’ , first run was supported by what was what the studio and purists understood the format really meant: THE REAL THING .
Sub runs and country got the 35mm run-off and sometines, as described above, interstate and overseas glamor first runs got the 35mm palm-off. Now we all know that, don’t we. Paul B.

Vito on February 4, 2004 at 7:49 am

I agree with all that Paulb wrote regarding all the widescrens, however it does not apply to VistaVision which was projected in the VistaVision format in New York at Radio City Music Hall and The Paramount. VistaVision projectors were built to run the print thru the gate horizontally, which is how the film was shot. To my knowledge only a few of these projectors were made and installed in theatres, I believe Paramount Pictures had a pair in their screening room in L.A.

PAULB on February 2, 2004 at 6:37 pm

With this cinemascope 55 business, I have always taken it to mean THE FILMING PROCESS not the exhibition process: like Camera 65 for Ben hur or Dimension 150 for Patton. In Sydney we also saw ads for CAROUSEL and THE KING AND I and even on the theatre front proclaiming ‘the wonder of ’ CINEMASCOPE 55 etc. but it never said the film was shown in it. As with vistavision, all the prints were just in 1.85:1 so any cinema could show the shape of Vistavision, so yes the picture was a Vistavision picture (as it said on the opening logo and the poster and the ad and the screen was a rectangle not as wide as cinemascope) ….so it was Vistavison. It is really only Cinerama that advertised “cannot be seen in any other theatre” otherwise all these processes would have said that. BEN HUR opened in Sydney in 1960 in 35mm but as the ad said: CAMERA 65 brings you….etc. CAROUSEL was a CINEMASCOPE 55 presentation YES, (on a 35mm print).
..just as it probably was all over the planet.

Vito on February 2, 2004 at 8:28 am

Well I did a litle more research on the Cinemascope 55 question.
According to the info I received from an old local 306 projectionist, Carousel opened in February 1956 at the Roxy and was indead shown in a reduction 35mm print. That is not to say that Edd is incorrect because there were a few experimental 55mm prints made and in fact Fox did want to show the film in 55 but it never materialized at least not to his knowledge and certainly not in The Roxy. The advantage to shooting the film in 55mm and then reducing to 35mm for projection was improved picure quality and lower grain.
The idea was only used one other time for “The King And I” which was also shown at The Roxy in 35mm. As for Kitty’s comment about the advertising, I don’t believe the ad actually said “shown in"
Cinemascope 55. It was the same for VistaVision which was shown all over during the late 50s, the ads read VistaVision but were shown in regular 35mm. The only theatres in New York to install VistaVision projectors were Radio City "White Christmas” and The Paramount “Were No Angels”

PAULB on February 1, 2004 at 7:11 pm

Thanks for that clarification…for a minute or two there I was very excited……I have also come to realise that THE STATE THEATRE SYDNEY has many ROXY features as well, particuarly the foyer rotunda (5 floors high, green pillars, dome and massive chandelier) and the 3 levels of seats and the rear aisle pillars, and interior designs etc. The State auditorium is not the cathedral look of the Roxy though, it is more like a huge beehive with French renaissance interior and gothic foyers. The art galleries and marlbe lights/statues all intact. It was thoroughly repainted and cleaned in 1982 and remains to this day much loved by everyone who set foot within and the premiere film location and concert venue in gorgeous Sydney. The State is in its 75the glorious year in 2004 and is still the absolute jewel inSydney’s luxury theatre crown. There is a website and I guess you can all find it via google on the internet.
Australia’s cinemas of the 20s really are as spectacular as those of the USA and we are lucky that TV did not arrive until 1957 which meant our luxury movie palaces lasted well into the 70s and 80s when alot were able to be retained. Sure we lost quite a few but just as many are still with us. Australia only has 19 million people in a land mass bigger than the USA so we have been blessed again. Look up REGENT MELBOURNE, ASTOR ST KILDA, CAPITOL SYDNEY as well.

ERD on February 1, 2004 at 7:09 am

By smaller version of the Roxy, I meant that the Beacon Theatre was
built as a movie palace. The interior is different but incorporated some of the features of the Roxy.

PAULB on February 1, 2004 at 4:17 am

Like many others, I am astonished to know that THE BEACON is a smaller version of THE ROXY.
I have never heard of that anywhere I have looked previously. Can someone please elaborate on the above comment and info… alike are they? etc for overseas reades of this site, that information would be a real zinger….thanks……PAUL BRENNAN Sydney Australia

ERD on January 31, 2004 at 9:22 pm

The Roxy theatre was originally intended to be the flagship theatre of the William Fox theatre chain in New York, but Fox did not have enough financial support to see it through. The only other theatre built that was suppose to be a part of this chain was The Beacon theatre, a smaller version of the Roxy, located on 74th Street and Broadway in Manhattan. It is still used for concerts & shows.

ERD on January 31, 2004 at 12:59 am

I went to the Roxy many times in the 1950’s when I was young. I still have the original Roxy programs of DAMN YANKEES & THE SEVENTH VOYAGE OF SINBAD, which played there a short time before it closed. The 3 Kimball console organ was no longer used. The instrument had a unique sound system that came from the orchestra pit.

bruceanthony on January 16, 2004 at 5:05 pm

I would love to see color pictures of the interior of the Roxy. I have only seen black and white. Its a shame that the Roxy and the San Francisco Fox are no longer with us what were they thinking. Today they would make great concert halls presented by clearchannel.Brucec.