Ziegfeld Theatre

141 West 54th Street,
New York, NY 10019

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Vito on December 12, 2008 at 11:44 am

Oh Bill, I hope I did not ruin the movie for you.
It has it values, the first half is not terrible but after that
it’s all down hill. Perhaps if we did not have the original I just would have chauked it up to just another so so picture. But when they call it a remake of a masterpiece they have to be more respectful of the original message and this picture does not.
I suggest you see Frost/Nixon to get the bad taste out of your mouth and see a really good picture. Outstanding actually.

Just to keep things somewhat on topic, isn’t it grand to have Craig aboard to listen to our suggestions and allow us to be a part of the Ziegfeld’s classic film choices.

Ross Melnick
Ross Melnick on December 12, 2008 at 11:41 am

Thanks so much for your understanding. I wish I had been able to deal with it earlier.

I also want to reiterate that Ken, Bryan, and Michael do herculean work here. If you have any time before the holidays, I’m sure they’d love to hear from you. Patrick and I couldn’t be luckier to have them.

And the same goes for our users. Some of the most plugged in, knowledgeable, and skilled exhibitors and projectionists post their comments on this site. You are not only contributing to the dialogue today, but to future historians and exhibitors who are able to learn from all of you. I try and keep that in mind whenever possible.

Thanks again for everything,


Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on December 12, 2008 at 11:33 am

Vito: And we are happy to have heard from you! You made my day, and even seeing that movie tonight won’t spoil it.

Vito on December 12, 2008 at 11:26 am

I am happy to have heard from Russ, thanks you so very much Russ, and I have come to the conclusion that the whole ugly affair was simply a glitch and my post was deleted though no fault of anyone in particular.
Unless of course someone at fox read it and did not appreciate the fact that I thought the movie was rubbish :)
Sorry could not resist that.
Truth is, the new generation will probably like (not love) it but many of us here at CT will not. I can also see why Clearview did not play the picture at the Ziegfeld.
Happily Robert Wise will not have to suffer through what has been done to his masterpiece.
But enough about TDTEST. Let me say thanks so very much to all of you who came to my defense and wrote so many kind things about me. It’s nice to be appreciated and I have always enjoyed this site so very much. Now that we have heard from the guys running this site we can all move on and put this misunderstand behind us.

Ross Melnick
Ross Melnick on December 12, 2008 at 11:12 am

Okay — here’s the situation and how I am choosing to deal with it. I have looked back in our database and I cannot find the comments that have been deleted or allegedly deleted. I am coming to this situation late so please forgive my ignorance of whether comments were posted or not posted. If they were posted and deleted, please accept my apology. As stated, Patrick and I did not delete them and would not have. I will remind our editors that we should make sure to keep the discussion on topic, but not to delete comments, if that is in fact what happened.

Since many of you have not met Patrick, Ken, Bryan, Michael, and myself, please let me assure you that we are working as hard as we can to produce a new website and make Cinema Treasures a place for EVERYONE to talk. All of us spend countless hours each day working on this site and it’s a shame that these issues sometimes cloud all of the wonderful information that is added daily and the amazing discussions going on in the other 23,000 pages. These kinds of situations also frustrate me to no end because they run counter to the spirit of the site. Yes, we have a comments policy and a user policy, but it is there to protect users, not to discourage free expression and debate. I am sorry if anyone has been upset by the issues discussed hereâ€"this is my first time trying to deal with it this morning.

If anyone would like to discuss this situation further, please email me. Your comments and concerns are deeply appreciated. In the meantime, I hope you will continue posting your comments about theaters, moviegoing, and, yes, even the films and the print quality and presentation of those films. While this is not a site to discuss movies per se, a small discussion about the merits of a film playing at a specific theater is not necessarily off topic. Like any community, we hope users will police themselves, keeping off topic conversations away, but understanding that a brief aside is not a criminal act. As for the Ridgewood, etc., we are trying to get a handle on what to do there. Adding message boards to the site certainly will help when we are able to do so.

Thank you all for your patience and understanding. This situation is not likely to be repeated anytime soon and if it is, I am only an email away. I also want to reiterate what a wonderful and knowledgeable group we have assembled here and it would be a calamitous shame to lose any of you.

Have a great weekend and thanks again for all of your contributions.


Ross Melnick
Ross Melnick on December 12, 2008 at 10:43 am

Dear All,

For the record, Patrick Crowley and I did NOT remove any comments from this page. We are investigating the situation, but we did not authorize any such deletions. I am investigating and will get back to you shortly. Please hold any comments, boycotts, etc. for a few minutes while I pour over the last few days and try to figure out what happened.


JeffS on December 12, 2008 at 10:18 am

OK, so let’s clear the air once and for all. WHO made the deletions here? Was it you Howard, or was it someone else? If someone else, WHO told them to do it?

I think we have all reached the point where we can agree the deletions were wrong, and won’t happen again (I hope). Nobody is talking about the hot dog stand across the street from the theater, and what if they did, who cares? Life isn’t about “staying on topic”.

I am of the frame of mind that anything said, is of importance or relevance.

Now, I’ll feel a lot better if I see a post from Vito.

RowJ – Thank you again.

HowardBHaas on December 12, 2008 at 10:06 am

Bill, unlike younger generations, I haven’t taken up smiley faces & the like.

I’m not sure which other deletions are referred to or who made them.

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on December 12, 2008 at 9:32 am

Webmasters: Your silence is deafening.

Howard: You should always put a smiley face :) after a joke you make in print. Without it, it looks like the real thing. When I read it, it seemed like you were (in the words of the 8/15/08 rules posted above) taunting or baiting another user.

rowJ on December 12, 2008 at 9:17 am

The above “apology” might be convincing to the simple-minded if it weren’t for the fact that the Ziegfeld is NOT the only theatre on this site where similar curious deletions have been noted in recent weeks. The “PrintScreen” key and the “File/Save” menu option are mightier, and far more accurate, than the sword. Just “jesting,” my foot!

HowardBHaas on December 12, 2008 at 9:07 am

Also, what was done seemed appropriate to ensure the thread stay about the Ziegfeld. However, in light of various comments, the deletion can now be viewed to have been a mistake. For the most part, this thread IS about the Ziegfeld, so if once in a while it strays just a bit, that would seem ok.

HowardBHaas on December 12, 2008 at 7:34 am

As Ziegfeld Man suggests, of course I was jesting!

ZiegfeldMan on December 12, 2008 at 6:54 am

Hi RowJ:

I would thoroughly agree with you except for this. Long ago I found that communicating by e-mail (or in this manner in a forum) can very often be misleading. You cannot hear the voice of the writer and see his/her face,i.e., the tone of message can be lost. The comment:“But, please tell us who the 2nd one is, so it can be figured out whether that’s good or bad.” could very well be an “LOL."
I’ll even admit this, after almost 34 years of marriage, I still have trouble determining when my wife is being sarcastic or not, and that’s when she’s speaking directly to me and standing right in front of me. Ah "Women, you can’t live with them and you can’t kill them” (LOL)

Now, that reminds me, would love to see “True Lies” again at the Ziegfeld. At the risk of being repetitive, as you see above, Craig is on-board for another round of classics, please, please inundate him with support for this via e-mail and send him plenty of titles.


JeffS on December 12, 2008 at 6:46 am

“Few of them, though, were crass enough to have the unbridled nerve to state publicly: "But, please tell us who the 2nd one is, so it can be figured out whether that’s good or bad.” Good or bad? This in itself is so overwhelmingly, breathtakingly “superior-feeling” of you and so utterly and completely contemptuous of your contributors as to be beyond any gentlemanly discussion."

Wow. Thank you RowJ, I think that deserved repeating…

I’m the 2nd one. So, is it good, or is it bad?

Talk about a sarcastic attitude toward contributors. Beyond belief.

rowJ on December 12, 2008 at 6:21 am

If even one single person decides to no longer contribute to the information base gathered together at this site because of arbitrary, dictatorial rules and flaggings suddenly and slap-happily imposed by persons who are clearly acting from their own distended egos, then this will surely mean the beginning of the slippery-slope decline of Cinema Treasures into an deep, lasting obscurity it would richly deserve. I have watched over these Internet years the rapid decline of dozens of ‘“top-of-the-heap, King-of-the-Mountain” websites that forgot the people for whom they were originally conceived.
Few of them, though, were crass enough to have the unbridled nerve to state publicly: “But, please tell us who the 2nd one is, so it can be figured out whether that’s good or bad.” Good or bad? This in itself is so overwhelmingly, breathtakingly “superior-feeling” of you and so utterly and completely contemptuous of your contributors as to be beyond any gentlemanly discussion.
Today’s Cinema Treasures is well on its way to becoming tomorrow’s Netscape.

JSA on December 11, 2008 at 8:13 pm

I really hope that the issues can be worked out. CT without Vito would be like “Lawrence of Arabia” without Peter O'Toole.

And regarding suggestions for Ziegfeld classics, there’s a brand new 70MM print of West Side Story that just made the rounds in San Francisco and LA, and it’s screaming to be screened at NYC…


Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on December 11, 2008 at 7:09 pm

The second one: Jeff. He just said it, three posts above. And he’s one of the few people on here who can hold his own with Vito if a conversation on film projection gets seriously technical.

HowardBHaas on December 11, 2008 at 6:50 pm

Two? Who’s the 2nd one? Vito we know about. He’s not going anywhere- he has lots of fun posting on this thread and we all appreciate him. But, please tell us who the 2nd one is, so it can be figured out whether that’s good or bad.

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on December 11, 2008 at 6:44 pm

Thanks for taking a stand on this, Jeff. Still waiting for some higher authority at CT to get involved here before we lose two of our most knowledgeable members.

Vito: I’m seeing that movie-which-must-not-be-named tomorrow night at Lincoln Square 13. I will post my opinion there and I hope you’ll read it:


JeffS on December 11, 2008 at 5:26 pm

If certain people had not taken it upon themselves to play self imposed censors or “topicality traffic cops”, none of this would have happened. It was absolutely WRONG to delete those posts yesterday, and I’m furious it happened. I hope Vito decides to stay, and I hope this incident never happens again – nor do I hope we have to “watch what we say or talk about” in this forum, or sure as can be, I’m leaving too.

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on December 11, 2008 at 10:20 am

Hi Craig: I know it’s a longshot, but my request is for David Lean’s “Ryan’s Daughter”. I know there’s at least one semi-new 70mm print of it floating around out there, and back in 1970-71 it became the longest-running movie to play the Ziegfeld, a record it still holds. It’s an awesome spectacle on a TV screen – imagine what it must be like at the Ziegfeld.

“Ryan’s Daughter” or not, I’m just grateful to you and the Ziegfeld for presenting the classics, and I’m eagerly looking forward to whatever shows you guys come up with!

therock1 on December 11, 2008 at 10:08 am

Hi All,

Just want to let all of you know that yes, we do listen to you and your suggestions for The Ziegfeld.

Feel free to e-mail me your comments and suggestions at any time.

Also, send me your Classic Film title suggestions and we will see if we can put together a nice program for either the winter or the early spring.

Thanks and have a wonderful Christmas and Holiday Season!


ZiegfeldMan on December 11, 2008 at 9:53 am

We’re all cyberfriends here and share common interests regarding the Ziegfeld, film presentation, and films, in general. The backgrounds that each of us bring can only add to the experience, and yes, we sometimes get emotional—I’ve certainly done it. But, hey, we’re all only human, and that’s great.

As far as the Ziegfeld, it’s not a perfect place, the presentation is not always what it should be, and, unfortunately, we don’t own and run the place. We can only suggest, and that’s good,too.

When the classics started a few years ago, they asked for suggestions (remember the cards)and Craig listened.

So, again, please send him an e-mail to encourage another Classic series.

And, by the way, “Benjamin Button” which opens at the Ziegfeld Christmas Day has just been nominated for plenty of Golden Globes.


Happy Holidays

markp on December 11, 2008 at 9:51 am

As I said above, I posted right after vito’s assessment of the movie. I did not see anything wrong with it. He just didn’t like it. No big deal. Freedom of speech, we’re all supposed to have it, but I guess…

LuisV on December 11, 2008 at 9:38 am

Vito, please don’t leave. I don’t know anything at all about the behind the scenes activity at theaters and, I must admit, am totally lost by some of the technical language that you use. Nonetheless, it is incredibly important information and we can’t lose it.

It’s a shame that the blatant abuse that is present on the Ridgewood page is possibly ruining it for everyone, but the answer isn’t withrawing your valuable contribution to this site.