Loew's State Theatre

1540 Broadway,
New York, NY 10036

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Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on April 29, 2011 at 9:25 am

Loew’s State was the first theatre in Manhattan to present “Bwana Devil,” which was the first American feature in 3-D requiring polarized glasses. The glasses, in cardboard frames, were handed out free to patrons in the lobby after their tickets were torn…Even when glasses became more substantial with plastic frames, they were distributed free, though patrons were encouraged to return them before leaving. The used glasses were then sterilized before being distributed again.

BobbyS
BobbyS on April 28, 2011 at 12:53 am

If you think they are not building them grand anymore, click on Muvico Rosement. It is located near O'hare in Chicago. Be sure and read and cleck on the pix’s. This is a grand showplace in every sense. When they were building this theater and I was watching as I was driving by, I thought I was dreaming! A vertical being put up above a massive marquee with all the fancy bulb work. I agree with someones post that the large facade was inspired from our Paradise Theater here in Chicago. You will see a night shot and I must tell you it is BRIGHT & BEAUTIFUL! A movie palace lovers dream come true!

WilliamMcQuade
WilliamMcQuade on April 27, 2011 at 6:02 pm

The movies started out in small nicelodeons. They seem like they are going back to their roots with small theaters, postage size screens & sky high prices. I like 3 D but to pay $ 4 for rental of glasses is beyond the pale. If more movies will come out in 3 D, let people but their own pair of permanent ones like eyeglasses. If the want us to pay for the privelege of renting them everytime, at least use vaseline if you know what I mean.

CSWalczak
CSWalczak on April 27, 2011 at 3:16 pm

And if they use unimaginative names, they lately have come up with some depressing or starnge names such the Block E in Minneapolis (sounds to me like it is part of a prison) or the Sundance 608 in Madison, WI (named, believe it or not for the area code part of the theater’s telephone number) or the O in Miami. Obviously, I am getting old, but why not occasionally give us a some new Palaces, Orpheums, States, Strands, Tivolis, Rialtos, Orientals, and theaters named after states or cities? These names had romanticism, style, and grace, and even, (dare I say it?) some magic to them.

LuisV
LuisV on April 27, 2011 at 2:46 pm

Ed, I am behind you 100%. I simply don’t understand it. Even if they only outfitted one auditorium but went all out! Sadly, that would be a dramatic improvement over the multiplex construction of the current day.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on April 27, 2011 at 2:19 pm

Of course, the new cinemas are still pretty damn soulless on the inside! That is unfortunate. I mean these chain restaurants construct all these over-the-top dining facilities (I’m thinking P.F. Chang, Cheesecake Factory, Grand Lux Cafe, etc), that I wonder why movie chains don’t put the same thought into interior decor with their new construction. I’m not asking for expensive terra cotta exteriors and ornate plaser-work on the inside trimmed in gold-leaf and mahogany… but it would be nice to have something other than drab unadorned sheet rock walls and plain concrete and stucco-foam facades that are the standard in modern mutliplex construction.

But, I know I ask too much. These corporate lackeys can’t even come up with names for their theater more imaginative than “Stadium 12!”

LuisV
LuisV on April 27, 2011 at 1:26 pm

Yes BobbyS! They did replace the Loews sign with a Regal but in the same beautiful blade design. I also love the exterior of Loews/Regal theater. it is a beautiful homage to the theaters of the past; especially when most new theaters are soulless boxes.

BobbyS
BobbyS on April 27, 2011 at 11:51 am

I saw “Gone With The Wind” 30 years ago in Chicago in wide screen. It was something to see. Would have enjoyed it better at Loew’s State but was never in the theater. After Ted Turner completely restored the film it went back to 35mm and beautiful color. I think the 70mm format was unavailable from then on. I was in the Paramount down the street as they were demolishing it. I just walked in as the workers were on a lunch break. What a shame that was to let go! But I was in Ny as Loews opened their new E-Walk theater on 42nd St. It was very nice with a flavor of a Times Sq. movie house. Beautiful vertical sign that changed colors as it spelled out L-O-E-W-S. Across the street soon came the AMC which added too many screens to the area. AMC bought Loews and the Loews became Regal. Did they save that beautiful vertical and re-letter it with Regal? Hope so. It was a beauty!

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on April 26, 2011 at 10:25 am

Fifty years ago today, “Gone With the Wind” returned to Loew’s State for a special engagement keyed to the 100th anniversary of the start of the Civil War. Performances were continuous from 9:00am, with last screening at 8:45pm. “GWTW” was previously shown at Loew’s State in 1954 in 1:66 wide-screen format with Perspecta Sound. I believe that one of those prints was used again at Loew’s State, but advertising made no presentation claims other than “in Technicolor.”

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on April 17, 2011 at 4:37 pm

Fifty-seven years ago today, Loew’s State re-opened its stage for 10 days for a “Gala Easter Show” topped by Julius LaRosa and Archie Bleyer & His Orchestra, who’d recently made national headlines when Arthur Godfrey fired the singer and conductor from his radio and TV shows. Also on the variety bill were jazz singer Ella Fitzgerald, comedians Herbert & Saxon, and a group known as Wells and The Four Fays. And on its wide-vision screen, the State had the NYC premiere engagement of U-I’s Technicolored “Yankee Pasha,” starring Jeff Chandler and Rhonda Fleming.

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on April 15, 2011 at 1:08 pm

Sixty-eight years ago today, Loew’s State opened its Easter holiday offering with what amounted to a double serving of vaudeville. On screen in its NYC premiere engagement was Republic’s B&W “Hit Parade of 1943,” which starred Susan Hayward and John Carroll but was mainly an excuse for guest performances by three top bands and their leaders (Count Basie, Freddie Martin, Ray McKinley), and entertainers such as Pops & Louie, the Golden Gate Quartet, Charita, and the Music Maids. On stage, the “live” vaudeville included veteran comedian Willie Howard, jazz harpist Adele Girard, pantomimist Danny Rogers, dancers Pritchard & Lord, and Joe Marsala and His Orchestra.

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on February 18, 2011 at 11:44 am

Fifty-eight years ago today, Arch Oboler’s “Bwana Devil,” the first feature in the 3-D Natural Vision process, opened its NYC premiere engagement at Loew’s State, simultaneously with Fabian’s Fox Theatre in downtown Brooklyn. The bookings were advertised separately and even on different pages of the same newspapers at the insistence of Loew’s, which wasn’t too happy about the arrangement. But distributor United Artits had demanded it to gain experience in large theatres with the dual projector system and the distribution of viewer glasses. Also on the bill at both theatres was the “flat” Walt Disney documentary short, “The Alaskan Eskimo,” which made for a weird combination with the African safari feature.

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on December 28, 2010 at 4:41 pm

During this holiday week in 1958, Loew’s State re-opened its stage with Alan Freed’s “Christmas Jubilee of Stars,” with 21 acts topped by “Cry” crooner Johnnie Ray. On screen was 20th-Fox’s “Villa!,” in CinemaScope and color starring Bran Keith and Cesar Romero, with Rodolfo Hoyos in the title role.

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on December 13, 2010 at 1:47 pm

Loew’s State and other theatres can be seen in the background of this 1937 newsreel coverage of the dedication ceremonies at Duffy Square. If you watch closely, you can also spot the marquees of the Embassy Newsreel, Palace, Mayfair, and Strand: View link

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on November 24, 2010 at 6:27 am

I’d like to see the ads of the premieres that are being described, but I find any old movie theater ads to be very interesting.

Vito
Vito on November 24, 2010 at 5:53 am

saps, I my be able to help with ads which ones are you looking for?

William
William on November 23, 2010 at 12:34 pm

Tinseltoes, You forgot to mention. On Nov. 18, 1959 (51 years ago) that “Ben-Hur” had it’s World Premiere at the Loew’s State Theatre and ran for 74 weeks.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on November 23, 2010 at 12:13 pm

Tinseltoes, do you have any newspaper ads you could post concerning these interesting premieres you’re describing?

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on November 23, 2010 at 11:26 am

On this day in 1949, RKO’s B&W “Holiday Affair,” starring Robert Mitchum, Janet Leigh, and Wendell Corey, opened its NYC premiere engagement at Loew’s State. And throughout that day and night only, Bob Mitchum himself appeared on stage between screenings. The State was now in its second year as a “Showcase for Notable Motion Pictures,” some of which had included “Easter Parade,” “The Three Musketeers,” and “Jolson Sings Again.”

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on November 20, 2010 at 4:46 pm

On thie day in 1947, Universal-International’s B&W “The Wistful Widow of Wagon Gap,” with Marjorie Main in the title role but billed third after co-stars Bud Abbott and Lou Costello, opened its NYC premiere engagement at Loew’s State. By that time, the State no longer used the word “vaudeville” for its stage shows, but the bill included singing comedian Georgie Price, famous bartender “Think-A-Drink” Hoffman, Teddy Rodriguez & Phyllis, the Debonairs, the Kanazawa Trio, and jazz singer Maxine Sullivan of “Loch Lomond” fame. Louis Basil conducted the house band, known as the Loew’s Statesmen. General admission was 50 cents until 1:00pm.

Vito
Vito on November 10, 2010 at 8:20 am

I was thinking the same thing Bill,talk about gross exaggeration

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on November 10, 2010 at 7:35 am

Thanks, Vito. After viewing this ad, do you think people felt cheated when they saw the actual screen? That looks more like Cinerama to me.

Vito
Vito on November 10, 2010 at 7:28 am

Nov 10th, On this date in 1953 the second picture releaesd in CinemaScope opened simultaneouly at the State and Globe.
I belive HTMAM was actually the first movie filmed in Scope but Zanuck in his wisdom decided to release “The Robe” first to introduce the miracle you see without glasses.

View link

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on October 20, 2010 at 3:14 pm

Thanks Tinseltoes.

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on October 20, 2010 at 11:35 am

On this day in 1948, MGM’s “The Three Musketeers,” starring Lana Turner, Gene Kelly, June Allyson, Van Heflin, and Angela Lansbury in the first Technicolor version of the adventure classic, opened its world premiere engagement at Loew’s State. Since dropping vaudeville at the State, Loew’s had been developing the house as a “Showcase for important pictures,” and had offered a better deal for “Musketeers” than Radio City Music Hall, which had also wanted it.