AMC Orleans 8

2247 Bleigh Street,
Philadelphia, PA 19152

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Showing 101 - 125 of 141 comments

Eddiej1984
Eddiej1984 on December 3, 2005 at 7:49 pm

But the commercials are show BEFORE the start time
once the start time hits, the previews begin.

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on December 2, 2005 at 10:51 pm

I think we all can agree that if commercials shown at theaters can somehow be gotten beyond that movie theater attendence will dramatically increase accordingly.

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on November 30, 2005 at 6:18 pm

Because the advertisers are paying big money to advertise in the theatres. And the theatre chains are compeating with DVD’s and On-Demand video rentals, who also advertised on the DVd’s and on the On-Demand rentals.

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 30, 2005 at 5:35 pm

Both movie theaters and movies are in many ways commercials in and of themselves, and it’s really no problem just so long as the theater attendees don’t feel it’s in their face and disruptive of what they came out to see. To give an analogy, it is said that make-up is applied properly only if no one can tell that the person wearing it has it on. In like fashion, advertising is at its best when the person who’s being advertised to doesn’t know that they are. For instance, if you look at old photos of the Mayfair Theatre as it was in the beginning, you’ll see these banners hanging down from just below the marquee that boldly read: “AIR CONDITIONED.” It was advertising to be sure, but hardly in a way that the theater attendees were put off by. And it all had to do with how the advertising was strategically placed. But had those theater attendees been subjected to lengthy film clips about all the great things about air conditioning prior to when the movie began there’s no question they would’ve totally hated it! But because the Mayfair Theatre did not choose to go that route — thank Gawd! — that Mayfair Theatre, because of how it was run, probably did more to step up the sale of air conditioners than anything we can think of. I call it the “lost enlightenment” in terms of how to best run a movie theater. And well composed movie can do advertising in a whole variety of ways without the viewer ever being aware of it. And I’m not talking about subliminal advertising, where a single frame in the film, too quick for the conscious eye to catch, reads: “Shop at Macy’s!” or what have you. Rather, I’m talking about such things as Sean Connery in a James Bond movie not making any special effort to hide the fact that he’s driving an Astin-Martin. Is this advertising in movies? You bet it is! And right within the movie at that. But who notices when it doesn’t throw off or cheapen the story? And anybody who thinks that Sean Connery’s driving an Astin-Martin in those James Bond movie didn’t help the sale of Astin-Martins a thousand times more than any straightforward Astin-Martin commercial ever did is totally ignoring the actual statistics. For advertising is at its absolute best when people aren’t consciously aware they’re being advertized to. And it’s at its absolute worst when they are. Among the things that has really hurt the success of movie theaters in recent years is the use of straightforward commercials in them. For I don’t know anyone at all who wants to see them, do you? So why would any theater chain in its right mind shove in peoples' faces what they don’t want to see? When it comes to theaters, there are right ways to advertise, and there are wrong ways. And the only reason why any theaters seem to be getting away with it right now is because all theaters are pressured to do the same, in many instances contractually locked in to doing the same. And this is the impasse that somebody somewhere has got to break. And if they do, it will go a long way in making going to the movies very exciting once more. Many theaters now think it’s not too bad for the attendee if the commercials are run before the movie begins. But oh, they are so wrong! At no time, before the film, after the film, between films if it’s as double-feature, or whatever, should straightforward commercials in theaters ever be shown. Simply put, straightforward commercials kill the theaters, and they kill the movies. And what customer wants to pay good money in exchange for that?

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on November 29, 2005 at 4:03 pm

Almost every theatre owned by AMC, Loews Cineplex and Regal Entertainment Group now shows commercials before the movie. The main company responsible, National CineMedia, is jointly owned by AMC Theatres and Regal Entertainment Group.

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 18, 2005 at 6:51 pm

Are they running commercials at the Orleans? If so, it totally contradicts another major reason why anyone — short of those who love getting ripped off — would be motivated to go out to see a movie at a theater. At that big convention the theater operators held out in Chicago, in their giving the green light to digital, wasn’t one of the agreements reached that if they chose to, at their own discretion, they could opt out of running commercials at their respective theaters if they said okay to digital? I’m pretty sure that was the agreement reached, meaning that if the AMC Orleans is running commercials it’s doing something it doesn’t have to and that obviously no reputable theater operator would. Making an excellent argument why the Orleans needs to have a competing theater operating in close proximity. Not that this second theater in the area would cause the Orleans to clean up its act, but at least it would provide Northeast Philly’s more intelligent citizenry with a theater they could feel satisfied with. Showing previews/trailers is acceptable. But commercials!? At a theater!? Woe! That’s blasphemy!!!

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 18, 2005 at 5:14 pm

Are they running commercials at the Orleans? If so, it totally contradicts another major reason why anyone — short of those who love getting ripped off — would be motivated to go out to see a movie at a theater. At that big convention the theater operators held out in Chicago, in their giving the green light to digital, wasn’t one of the agreements reached that if they chose to, at their own discretion, they could opt out of running commercials at their respective theaters if they said okay to digital? I’m pretty sure that was the agreement reached, meaning that if the AMC Orleans is running commercials it’s doing something it doesn’t have to and that obviously no reputable theater operator would. Making an excellent argument why the Orleans needs to have a competing theater operating in close proximity. Not that this second theater in the area would cause the Orleans to clean up its act, but at least it would provide Northeast Philly’s more intelligent citizenry with a theater they could feel satisfied with. Showing previews/trailers is acceptable. But commercials!? At a theater!? Woe! That’s blasphemy!!!

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 18, 2005 at 5:10 pm

Are they running commercials at the Orleans? If so, it totally contradicts another major reason why anyone — short of those who love getting ripped off — would be motivated to go out to see a movie at a theater. At that big convention the theater operators held out in Chicago, in their giving the green light to digital, wasn’t one of the agreements reached that if they chose to, at their own discretion, they could opt out of running commercials at their respective theaters if they said okay to digital? I’m pretty sure that was the agreement reached, meaning that if the AMC Orleans is running commercials it’s doing something it doesn’t have to and that obviously no reputable theater operator would. Making an excellent argument why the Orleans needs to have a competing theater operating in close proximity. Not that this second theater in the area would cause the Orleans to clean up its act, but at least it would provide Northeast Philly’s more intelligent citizenry with a theater they could feel satisfied with. Showing previews/trailers is acceptable. But commercials!? At a theater!? Woe! That’s blasphemy!!!

Eddiej1984
Eddiej1984 on November 18, 2005 at 3:33 pm

If I’m correct every amc theatre HAD To switch over to digital slides in auguest or a few montsh ago.
At orleans they didnt have any slides before the commercials/previews, screen was blank and theyw ere just playing movietunes (I saw Saw II there)

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 17, 2005 at 6:14 pm

Several weeks ago the closest digital theater to us was up in Elizabeth, NJ, over 61 miles away. But since then it’s come a bit closer in that the United Artists King of Prussia Stadium 16, which is 18 miles away from us, now has it. So I’m going to venture a guess from that that whatever theaters here in Philadelphia switch over to digital are those that plan to stick around, and whatever ones don’t will be the ones shutting down. So if AMC Orleans is telling everybody that it has no plans of shutting down next year, but isn’t scheduled to switch over to digital anytime soon, the latter is the real giveaway as to what the actual truth is. As for the two theaters built on the side of the original Orleans having bigger screens than the original theater building did, that’s because they were designed specifically to be theaters unto themselves. But if you take the original Orleans theater and make it into a single screen theater once more — as it was originally intended to be anyway — it will easily be able to stay competitive and be right up there with the best theaters around in terms of over all screen size. And to be sure, a lot of the quality-conscious-consumers who stopped coming to it when it was split up into two smaller theaters will start going to it once more. I know that I certainly will if it’s showing the movie I want to see, but which the Pennypack Theatre closer to home to me (which when restored will be a single screen theater) isn’t. And I’m sure there will be times when it will be vice versa for those residing over in the Orleans Theatre area. For to me it would be damned foolish for the Orleans Theatre to shut down completely next year just at the dawn of digital cinema. For the restored Pennypack Theatre just in itself as the only digital cinema around is going to have a very limited capacity regarding how many consumers it can serve at any one given time. It’s got enough going for itself that it can be one of several digital cinemas with a single screen right in this over all NE Philly region, both in terms of its parking capacity and location, but for it to really work out well for everybody the AMC Orleans should set its sights on becoming a single screen cinema theater, too. And what about the old Castor Theatre nearby? For if it has adequate parking space, that should be restored to being a theater as well, this time around an all-new digital one. And what a pity the Crest up there on Rising Sun Avenue didn’t get to stick around long enough to see the digital age. I saw “The Last Picture Show” there, and how ironic it is now as I look back in that, unknownst to me at the time, I was actually living that movie as I was seeing it…

Eddiej1984
Eddiej1984 on November 16, 2005 at 7:33 pm

I didn’t make up the rumour of orleans closing and being torn down because I hate it, not at all.
The theatres in the 2nd building (the back one) are actually a bit better, while they are a bit smaller the screen seems bigger.
Orleans just hasn’t kept up, maybe if in the mod 90’s they did a renovation to it, and kept up with it then it wouldn’t be so bad, as the 2 buildings aren’t great but that wou;dn’t be so bad if both building housed comfortable theatres, and I don’t mean stadium seating, but more like how woodhaven 10 theatres are.
Oh well, it will be interesting to see what happens in 2006.

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on November 16, 2005 at 6:31 pm

The AMC Orleans 8 was already going downhill well before Bob Green and Philadelphia Park Racetrack opened Turf Club Northeast. In NYC, at their OTB locations (that looks like 7-Eleven), you cannot eat or drink in there, unless you buy your soda from a vending machine. The 3 teletheatres and the 6 restaurants also will not let you bring in outside food, soda or beer, but you can buy lunch or dinner, have a few beers, and place you bets easily.

On a sidenote: The Philadelphia Park Turf Club Brandywine is locted in the former United Artists-Eric Concordville 4 Theatre building. And the Philadelphia Park Turf Club South Philadelphia is a block away from Citizens Bank Park, and 2 blocks away from Lincoln Financial Field, Wachovia Spectrum and Wachovia Center.

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 16, 2005 at 6:16 pm

Philadelphia is not New York City, though, in that it has so much positive going for it that can offset any negative impact OTB parlors can have. Or so it seems.

My main concern however is that Northeast Philadelphia at the present time in terms of its movie theaters has nothing that can be described as “quality-conscious-consumer friendly.” No one with any class would be caught dead walking into the AMC Orleans right now the way it’s being run, except perhaps as a joke. One thing that might change the way the AMC Orleans is currently being run at some future point is if the Fox Chase Cancer Center v. Burholme Park dispute going on farther up Cottman Avenue gets resolves with those favoring saving the park prevailing the victors. But right now with all bets being placed on the bad guys winning in that dispute, the AMC Orleans has itself positioned for what it expects to prevail in a very opportunistic sort of way. Not that it ever really was a classy theater. I think in the beginning it tried to be classy when pressures were on it to be, but in later years, when Perzel and other mistakenly-elected politicians such as that came along, was told, “Okay, you can relax now,” at which point it split its main theater building into two and added those two smaller theaters to its side and then those really dinky ones in back where the Pathmark used to be. But to give credit where it’s due, at least it continued onward as a theater rather than becoming an OTB facility or what have you. And that’s a lot more than can be said of the nearby Crest, which became a fur coat store, and the Mayfair, which became an Eckards. Or the Pennypack over in the Holmesburg section, which, since the ‘50s has been everything but a theater. So at the very least, hats off to the AMC Orleans for staying on course by remaining a theater! All told, as you can see, there are so many different ways you can look at it….

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on November 16, 2005 at 3:54 am

Up in New York City, the Off Track Betting facilities are as common as a 7 Eleven. New York City Off Track Betting has 90 OTB facilities, 3 Tele-theatres locations, and 6 resturant locations throughout Manhattan, Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens and Staten Island. Also, NYC has Aqueduct Racetrack, which shares its parking lot with The Home Depot, and has the REG Cross Bay II 7 Theatre down the street from it. The William Goldman’s/Budco/AMC Orleans 8 is in this same situation.

Screens 5 to 8 of the Orleans 8 opened 11 years after the Woodhaven Mall 4 Cinemas / AMC Woodhaven Mall 4 / AMC Woodhaven 10 opened. Woodhaven opened in 1973, Budco Orleans #5-8 opened in 1984.

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 15, 2005 at 6:04 pm

It’s hard to imagine how anyone arriving to the Orleans and finding out the movie they came to see is being exhibited at one of those dinky small theaters they have in back where the Pathmark used to be could do so without feeling hugely let down. And do they charge the same admission at those littler theaters that they do at the bigger ones? If so, it’s hard to conceive how this could even be legal! In fact, I’d feel really let down if the movie I came to see was being shown in one of the not quite as small theaters they built on the side of the original Orleans. But I guess all this is to be expected when it’s the only theater complex around for a very wide radius. Still, it really isn’t right, and it’s sad that folks in this area put up with it. And perhaps the OTB parlor built so near to it reveals the degree that gambling operations such as that, not to mention slots parlors, downgrade everything that’s right around them. In brief, I’m seeing here, just as was proven in Atlantic City, that gambling, except with regard to itself, is bad for other businesses right around it, draining away the lifeblood from what had some degree of life before. And what a terrible context to see a movie in! I mean, is it any wonder that 50 Cent’s “Get Rich or Die Tryin'” was the main feature being shown there last Saturday? And in its two main theaters at that? I guess that all told the way the Orleans is being run now works out for those who like getting ripped off. But what about having a theater in Northeast Philly to satisfy the needs of the more quality conscious consumers residing around here? Or is it now the case that there aren’t any left, that all such consumers have now vacated Northeast Philadelphia for good because there’s nothing left around here to make them want to stay? For oh how so much a poorly run theater — but which wasn’t always — seems to reveal!

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 14, 2005 at 5:17 pm

Good Memory! Meantime, er, what’s a park turf club OTB facility?

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on November 13, 2005 at 7:28 pm

The Wachovia Bank acroos the street from the William Goldman’s/Budco/AMCOrleans was never a restaurant. It opened as a First Pennsylvania Bank branch. The Doral’s Catering facility is now a Philadelphia Park Turf Club Northeast OTB facility.

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 12, 2005 at 6:52 pm

Rode my bike out to the AMC Orleans 8 Theatre this beautiful sunny Saturday autumn afternoon, not only to get some great digital photos of it, but also to try to get some first hand accounts of what it’s final fate shall be. For I asked someone from the NE Times to look into it yesterday, and AMC told them there’s no plans of tearing the theater down to make way for a Target Store there come next June. However, that might only be with regard to the main theater building. For various people I spoke with today at that small shopping center on Bustleton Ave said the building with the “HOLLYWOOD” sign on top will get torn down along with a few others in close proximity starting next year to make way for an all-new Target Store. And “a few others” might be in reference to the row of mini theaters the Orleans has in that seperate building just behind Pep Boys (formerly Pathmark). And that to me doesn’t look like it will be any real loss. For to try to squeeze several theaters into a building that small really was pushing it. I mean, could you see going there to see your favorite movie, anticipating seeing it on one of the bigger screens in the main theater building, only to be told that YOUR movie’s being screened in that dinky little building just behind it?! I mean, talk about tacky! The main theater building, though, I think shows a lot of promise, particularly if they can make it a single-screen theater once more. It has a very nice lobby area. They should look for ways of tying that main theater building in with Roosevelt Mall more, for right now I get this sense that there’s some type of stand-off going on between the two rather than the theater and the mall being mutually beneficial. It’s a shame that Wachovia just across the street couldn’t be made a **** restaurant once more, for I believe that would do it…

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on November 11, 2005 at 5:56 pm

The AMC Orleans 8 (Former William Goldman’s/Budco Orleans Theatre) has been rumored to close first at the end of 2004, then in the summer of 2005, now in early 2006. The current Theatre #1-4 has been around since 1963, when William Goldman Theatres co. first opened the Orleans Theatre. The current #5-8 opened after Pathmark closed their supermarket, which now houses Orleans #5-8 and Pep Boys.

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 10, 2005 at 9:29 pm

You’re right, and I fully apologize, for this page should be about the Orleans Theatre itself. Speaking of which, what is Eddie Jacobs basing his rumor on that it will be closing down next June to be replaced with a Target Store? Is the rumor he’s spreading true, or simply his roundabout way of expressing how put off he is by how generic this theater is? For even I’ll admit, even though it’s the last theater right around here, that it would be difficult to get too sentimental about it if it does shut down. It’s as if to say it was never designed in such a way that people could feel sentimental about its closing down. It lacks that certain “presence of soul” or whatever it is.

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 9, 2005 at 7:12 pm

The major flaw of what the current owners of the historic Pennypack Theatre building plan to do with it — to make it a mini-mall that has a Dollar Tree, Pizza Hut, upscale coffee shop, laundromat, etc. (all things which this area has plenty of already) — is that no sort of public hearings were ever held in reaching that decision. Furthermore, every pre-existing business along that stretch of Frankford Ave was totally kept in the dark about it until after this decision was made. Meaning that over all the whole project is probably illegal. What is making the situation especially difficult, however, is that the Holmesburg Civic Association is 100% supportive of what the new owners plan to do with the Pennypack Theatre building, even though no efforts were ever made on its part to find out what the community at large thinks first. And that failure on the HCA’s part, too, for the most part is probably illegal. But hey, when you have politicians overseeing Holmesburg such as Philadelphia Councilwoman Joan Krajewski, State Reprentatives Mike McGeehan and John Perzel, State Senator Mike Stack, U.S. Representative Allyson Schwartz and last but not least, Mayor John Street, the over all attitude appears to be, “Hey, what’s wrong with a little illegality?”

Now I could advise you attend the next Holmesburg Civic Association meeting, to be held next Tuesday evening (Nov 15) at 7pm at the Holmesburg Rec Center at Rhawn & Ditman, to let your views be known there. But be forewarned it’s rigged. And so from my perspective what that means is that in order for the Pennypack Theatre building to be properly restored to its rightful honor of being a movie theater once more, the only way it’s likely really going to happen, at least if it’s going to be done right, will entail overriding those resistence factions entirely. I.e., totally ignore them just as they’re ignoring us.

At the national level, meantime, there very much is a powerful campaign to reverse the current trend of existing movie theaters closing down left and right, as well as to introduce totally new ones, especially now that digital cinema is ready for roll-out and already is taking hold in certain places in the U.S. Meantime, right here in Northeast Philadelphia we constitute a huge movie-going audience that’s currently not being tapped into — compliments of the above named politicians, at least with regard to the Holmesburg area. For in my own efforts to see that Holmesburg not be overlooked by the nationwide campaign, I have not met one Northeast Philadelphia resident — NOT ONE — who doesn’t want to see that Pennypack Theatre building rightfully restored to being a movie theater once more. (As for Pizza Hut, I have nothing against them whatsoever. My only point was that it’s silly for that chain to try to compete in an area where people can and prefer to buy real Italian pizza at actual locally-based pizza parlors. If they want to try, short of their being an obstacle to efforts to restoring an historic movie theater, my only response is power to them.)

Meantime, in terms of your being able to help reverse the trend of Northeast Philly theaters shutting down, let those who head up the movie industry know about it, rather than trying to talk sense to Northeast Philly politicians who couldn’t care less what we the people living here think or want. For the more Hollywood knows there’s a powerful market here just waiting to be tapped into, the more that will become the ultimate overriding factor. For ultimately it’s we the people who count, not a silly small group of politicians who have forgotten us, and illegally so from the looks of it.

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 8, 2005 at 7:02 pm

At this moment those who own the Pennypack Theatre building — which was called the Holme Theatre until 1946 — are digging in their heals determined to make it a sort of mini-mall rather than an all new digital cinema. Call it politics at its absolute worst. The current owners of that building are totally ignoring the fact that there’s way too many dollar type stores, pizza chains, laundromats, etc., in this area already, what is known as oversaturation. As business policy goes, it will fail, and of course it will fail, that’s the whole point. For it’s the everyday taxpayers' dollars that are paying for it all, or will be paying for it all in terms of bail-outs when it fails, not the owners of these businesses. But so long as the taxpayers don’t mind this even though they themselves don’t derive any benefit, there’s little to stop them. Meantime, how many consumers around here right now do you know of who are saying, “Golly gee, I only wish we had more dollar type stores around here, pizza chains, laundromats and so on”? Now some might argue that movie theaters can’t make as much money as those other type businesses can. But that’s missing the whole point. What movie theaters do is make a particular consumer business district that much more alluring. And proof of this right now can be seen in Ambler, PA with its newly restored Ambler Theatre. And the same in Phoenixville with its newly restored Colonial Theatre. These theaters in themselves aren’t making a ton of money, but they’re having a miraculous effect on turning around the long slumping economies all around them. Meantime, the main consumer business strip through Holmesburg has been in a slump since the 1950s, the same year the Pennypack Theatre closed. Coincidence? Hardly.

Anyway, what’s happening with the Pennypack Theatre building right now is that there’s strong resistence on the part of its owners plus the NE Phila politicians and local civic association against making it a movie theater again. And so long as that resistence outweighs the desire of those of us who want to see it become a theater again, those putting up the resistence will prevail. Only to give NE Philly what it has too much of already, which then, of course, will fail due to oversaturation — each identical type business sapping business away from the other. And this we all pretty much know ahead of time. For I passed the Pizza Hut in Mayfair the other day and consumer traffic going in and out was dead. It was all brightly lit up for business, yet totally empty. For why would anyone bother going there when there’s so many local pizza parlors all throughout NE Philly where you can buy real Italian pizza? And when I passed by the closed up Devon Theatre down that way the other day, I saw passersby pausing to read the sign in front, eager to know when it will finally be reopened once more. As for the Pennypack Theatre building right now, how many people passing by it can’t wait till the dollar store opens up there, especially when there’s another one practically right across the street from it where Andy’s Hardware used to be, another at the nearby Holmesburg Shopping Center at Frankford Ave & Blakiston, another down where Mayfair’s Pep Boys used to be, etc., etc., etc.? Are you seeing people lining up in rows of two or more to shop at the area dollar stores right now? Or packing into the local laundromats with baskets piled high with laundry to be done? For I’m sure not.

So in a roundabout sort of way, right there is the powerful campaign to make the Pennypack Theatre building a theater once more. And Texas Instruments, Christie Digital, the entire motion picture industry out in Hollywood and many others are all ready to step in and make it happen whenever you are. So however you can, speak up, and stay tuned…

TheaterBuff1
TheaterBuff1 on November 7, 2005 at 11:39 pm

Those of you who are saddened by the news that the AMC Orleans 8 will be closing in April might be somewhat comforted to know that a powerful campaign is currently underway to see the Pennypack Theatre building (at Frankford Ave. & Welsh Road in NE Philly’s Holmesburg section) be restored to being a movie theater again. Built in 1929 and with a 1,364-seat seating capacity plus a sizeable parking lot, and designed by the acclaimed 20th century theater architecture pioneer William Harold Lee, because of the year it was built, the same as the ‘29 crash, it never got to be a full-fledged theater the first time around. So all these years, ever since the Pennypack Theatre closed sometime in the 1950s, it’s been this cinematic gem waiting to be rediscovered. If the campaign to make it a movie theater once more is successful, it will be a digital cinema theater, which will make it Philadelphia’s first — the closest one to Philadelphia right now being way up in Elizabeth, NJ.

Eddiej1984
Eddiej1984 on October 31, 2005 at 7:42 pm

Latest rumoured news is that Orleans will definatly close in april, then they will begin building target (after they knock some stuff down!)

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on October 15, 2005 at 7:11 pm

Yoc an’t put the blame squarely on AMC for the decline of the Orleans. Most of the blame falls with the old Budco Theatres chain.