Showing 101 - 125 of 1,102 comments
Great article about this theatres beginnings. And I just realized today that on this past Saturday, 3/15/2014, it has been 43 years since my father ran the last movie there and its doors closed for good.
Cinemadude, I agree with you about theatres that are keeping their 35mm equipment. The theatre in NJ where I am house projectionist, the Count Basie in Red Bank just installed a Christie Digital projector, but we kept our 2 simplex xl with 2000' reels. I still say film will make a comeback, much like vinyl is doing these days.
Worked here for about 3 months in early 2005 as a projectionist. The 2+ hour ride each way from Woodbridge made it not worth the trip.
Its really kind of sad to see a nine screen theatre last only 14 years. There’s something really wrong with the movie industry when theatres only last 14 years or so.
Thanks LuisV and Lost Memory. This old timer isn’t too good with that copy and paste and all that stuff. All greek to me. The story and photos are great. She’s gonna be a beauty when they’re done.
LuisV, for some reason (I don’t know why), so many links, including the one above in your last post don’t work for me. Im not sure if its my computer or what. I would love to read the article and keep tabs on the project.
To Mike Rodgers and carolgrau, its sad the way the I.A.T.S.E. projectionists were treated in the 90’s and 2000’s. I myself being one for almost 38 years now, well, I lost my last job in May 2013 to digital, but I had a really nice run. My father was also IA. He worked for 55 years up till 12/31/1992. Sad thing is he passed away the following Oct of 93. In all my years I never once scratched film, even when I worked in adult theatres. My booths were clean as hospital wards. But I was always looked at as too expensive, etc. I remember the late 90’s/early 2000’s when I worked for Clearview in NJ. Always got 97 to 100 on secret shoppers scores for presentation. A month after they got rid of the union in 04, scores went down to 60-70 range.
techman707, No, my father and I were members of Local 379, Perth Amboy NJ, which merged in 82 with Local 534, which merged with Local 21 about 3 years ago. Dad passed away 20 years ago. He was IA for 55 years. I was a member of 306 in 2004, working in White Plains NY before my back gave out and it became too expensive to travel 160 miles round trip 4 days a week.
Hey techman707, maybe if more companies had a good list of “rules” and decent projectionists, theatres wouldn’t be the way they are today. I mean lets face it, if qualified people were still running film, I believe there never would have been this huge push to digital. And maybe if these companies would have stuck to say 6 or 8 plexes (maybe 10 at the most), why maybe movies wouldn’t make it so fast to video. But this is just one mans opinion and after a nice 37 year run as a projectionist (coupled with my deceased dads 55 years).
Last time I worked here was in Dec 1997, just a day before Titanic came out. It was a twin then and the new owner was taking over the next day and went non-union. Shortly after he made it 7 screens. I know even when I worked there water would pour into the building after heavy snow. I wonder if this could be the reason for the unsafe condition mentioned by shany94.
Nato is a joke. I worked at a theatre whose owner was the state president. It was nothing more than a reason for them to get together and enjoy a good meal.
Im hoping they win. Its time these theatres stay open and not destroyed or turned into retail.
In my early days of projection, 76 thru say 80, we only ran 1, maybe 2 trailers at the most. The entire pre show ran 5 mins at best. I haven’t been to see a movie in almost 2 years, the last time seeing the latest James Bond flick at an AMC theatre in Edison NJ. The pre show ran 33 mins. Yes you read that right, 33 mins. Its something you never forget, and never want to go thru again.
walterk, its not bad. I miss projection though. Stagehand work has taken a toll on me, since Ive had a bad back the past 12 years, probably from carrying all those film cans. And yess, all my relatives went to high school in town. And with 13 of them Im sure you couldn’t miss em.
Thank you Peter. And Im glad to see you still running movies. I do miss it a little. You don’t do a job for almost 38 years and not miss it. Are you going to convert to digital? It is my understanding that some companies already have stopped releasing movies on film. I miss the days of changeovers. Although I have been told to accept progress, I don’t see why theatres (especially independents) had to switch over. There was nothing wrong with film, other than the fact that most theatres used teenagers instead of professionals like me. But that’s all in the past. I hope you can keep film going.
My my a we bit touchy are we. I said recently, as in about a month ago. I don’t go into town much, and haven’t been in the theatre since I stopped working there in 1983. Good luck with your shows and movies. Im no longer a projectionist since digital put me out of work. Im a stagehand now working at the Newark arena and really don’t miss movies or theatres that much anymore. Oh and I just turned 55 and still have 20/20 vision and I don’t need glasses. Just sayin.
I know it was open until at least Feb 1992 when I went with a long time friend to see a movie here before she moved out of state.
When you drive around back, you can still see the old stagehouse where the screen would be stored if a stage show was going on.
The GCC which I worked at for almost 15 years was across the street and was demolished after this opened in late 1991.
Drove by here recently. Looks pretty dead.
I was working there at the time. I remember putting up the letters on the marquee. We had many issues with those big red letters blowing off.
This theatre now for several weeks has not had any listings of showtimes in the Friday Star Ledger. Is it still open?
Drove by this place today on the way home from Red Bank. Interesting to see that someone is now vandalizing the roof top a/c units, just like what happened late in 2013 at the All Jersey Multiplex in Newark. You could also see numerous tire tracks in the snow in the unplowed parking lot. Copper must be paying a lot these days I guess.
DARCYDT, I worked for an independent operator in Nj for years. All the while he complained how the union projectionist contract kept forcing him to raise his prices. Well guess what, after he got rid of the union, prices still went up. Just the nature of the beast.
I know at some point last year the Forum Theatre in Metuchen NJ was for sale. Again if run properly it could be a money maker. When I last worked there years ago, it was a great neighborhood movie house. I believe its listed on this site as Forum Theatre Arts Center.