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From delawareonline.com 01/05/2009:
Sold-out movie thwarts Bidens
OK, if it wasn’t them, then who were those Secret Service guys?
By ANGIE BASIOUNY
The News Journal
He’s a heartbeat away from the presidency, but that apparently didn’t help Joe Biden get a movie ticket Saturday night.
Employees at the Regal Brandywine Cinemas say the vice president-elect and his wife, Jill, tried to attend the 7:45 showing of “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” at the theater on Concord Pike but left after they were told the movie was sold out.
There’s been no confirmation from the Biden camp, but the theater employees say they are sure it was him.
Inshirah Muhamut, an associate manager, said she closed her box-office line when she saw what appeared to be a Secret Service agent coming her way.
The man asked her about tickets for the movie, which stars Brad Pitt, then left.
A few minutes later, she said, the Bidens came into the lobby.
Jill Biden walked up to speak with Muhamut while Joe stood nearby.
“She was asking me about other shows, but they really wanted to see ‘Benjamin Button,’ ” Muhamut said. “He was maybe five feet away, looking at her. He was standing with his other Secret Service men.”
Remarkably, none of the other moviegoers appeared to notice. Employees said nobody mobbed Biden or called his name or asked for an autograph.
“It didn’t seem many people recognized him,” said employee Becky Gingrich, 21. “Honestly, I think people were just too wrapped up in themselves to notice.”
The brush with Biden did give the employees a thrill, though.
“I was a little excited — I’m not gonna lie,” said Muhamut, a 21-year-old senior at West Chester University. “The Secret Service guy told me to calm down.”
Muhamut plans to go to the Jan. 20 inauguration, so seeing the Bidens up close was a kick.
“I recognized him as soon as he came up,” she said. “He had a black jacket and jeans on. He looked real casual. His wife had on a very stylish jacket.”
Gingrich and Muhamut said the Bidens didn’t ask for special treatment. They simply mulled over their movie options and left.
“We’re just so crazy in here tonight [with patrons] that we would have had to go into the theater and move people around,” Gingrich said.
Do any of our Rochester friends remember back to about 1971, in the downtown Rochester area, there was a high-rise Holiday Inn right next to a river and a draw bridge. Among the amenities of the hotel was a mini-mall located off the hotel lobby. In that mini-mall there was a 2 screen cinema. If anybody knows if it is listed here on CT please let me know, I don’t remember the name of it. I stayed in the hotel, but business kept me occupied during the hours that the theatre was open, so I never got to check it out.
From Philly.com – 12/26/08:
Phila. man shot because family talked during movie
By Barbara Boyer
INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A South Philadelphia man enraged because a father and son were talking during a Christmas showing of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button took care of the situation when he pulled a .380-caliber gun and shot the father, police said.
James Joseph Cialella Jr., 29, of the 1900 block of Hollywood Street is charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, and weapons violations.
“It’s truly frightening when you see something like this evolve into such violence,” said police spokesman Lt. Frank Vanore.
Police were called to the Riverview Theatre in the 1400 block of Columbus Boulevard about 9:30 p.m. where the gunshot victim, a Philadelphia man who was not identified, told police a man sitting near him told his family to be quiet and threw popcorn at his son.
After exchanging words, Vanore said Cialella allegedly got out of his seat to confront the family when the father got up to protect them. That’s when the victim was shot once in the left arm, sending others in the theatre running to safety.
Cialella then sat down to watch the movie. Police arrived a short time later and arrested Cialella and confiscated his weapon, Vanore said.
They must have just read your post and taken down their website, because now you will get an error message if you click on that link.
While it may be listed as being in Cleveland, it is in fact in the suburb of Parma. The south side of Brookpark Rd. is Parma, and the north side is Brooklyn (yes, there is a Brooklyn here, too).
General Cinemas usual practice with a big twin was to split one side, making a triplex, then coming back a few years later to split the other large auditorium ending up with in 4-screens. So at some point along the way I’m sure it was Charlottetown Cinema I-II-III, as Michael C. suspects.
This theatre was featured on “Most Terrifying Places in America” on the Travel Channel Friday evening (12/19). Apparently it has a reputation for being haunted. The balcony and a spiral stairway backstage are particularly active. The theatre is built on the site of a hotel that had burned down, claiming a number of lives.
Has Bow Tie made the improvements to the American that Joe Masher on 4/10/08 said would be made?
According to davebazooka’s photo of 12/10/08 the sign currently reads Beekman Theatre One Two. Just omit the word ‘theatre’ and title the page ‘Beekman One Two’ – it would still be accurate, yet distinct from the real Beekman.
I think the title of this page should have remained ‘Beekman One & Two’ or ‘Beekman 1 & 2’ or ‘Beekman I & II’ (or ‘Beekman Twin’ or Beekman Uno y Dos, for that matter), regardless what the sign says. We need to differentiate this theatre from the actual Beekman that was demolished. The existence of that beloved theatre is still fresh in everyone’s mind, and will be for quite some time into the future.
The building that was once Loew’s West has recently been demolished, along with the southern leg of the L-shaped Rockport Plaza. The vacant Target store remains (why?) as does the eastern side of the original plaza. There is no sign indicating any future redevelopment.
New York City has to be the only place in the world where residential tenants have more rights to a property than the property owner. Anywhere else a tenants right to occupy a particular property ends with expiration of the lease for the demised premises. Upon the expiration of said lease, the property owner may offer a renewal but is not obligated to do so.
More hospital space in an area long ago over-saturated with hospitals. They had to take the Beekman block because apparently there aren’t enough ancient rat-infested tenement buildings worthy of demolition over on 1st Ave.
From the Encyclopedia of Cleveland History….
The EMBASSY THEATER, 709 Euclid Ave., one of downtown Cleveland’s last movie theaters, was built by Waldemar Otis as the Columbia Theater and opened 12 Sept. 1887, premiering Hanlon’s Fantasma. It boasted a tunnel leading to the Oaks Cafe on Vincent St. and marble stairs leading to a mahogany bar on Euclid Ave. On 17 Feb. 1889, it became the Star Theater, managed by W. Scott Robinson and Jas. S. Cockett, until 29 Aug., when Frank M. Drew took over.
Vaudeville, melodrama, and comic opera were offered until the 1890s, when burlesque was introduced. The Star was a “refined” burlesque house; women viewed the show from a side balcony, separated from the male audience by a heavy curtain. Some of the stars who played there included the Al G. Fields Minstrels, Ted Healy, and Weber & Fields. Renamed the Cameo Theater, it opened in 1926 as a motion-picture house. Loews took over the theater in 1931, and the building was remodeled.
In 1938 the Cameo was razed (except for the east and west walls); the Embassy Theater went up on the site and opened on 16 Oct. The tunnel was removed, and the theater was furnished with air conditioning, gleaming chromium, velvet hangings, and indirect lighting. Seating capacity was 1,200. During the 1970s, it became a showplace for action-type karate films. Owned by Community Circuit Theaters, the Embassy was closed on 1 Dec. 1977 and razed to make way for the Natl. City Bank building.
From The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History…..
The HIPPODROME THEATER was located in an 11-story office building at 720 Euclid Ave. Designed by Cleveland architect John Elliot, the “Hipp” featured exceptionally good acoustics, a lavish interior, grandiose spaciousness, and a second entrance on Prospect Ave. Considered to be among the world’s great playhouses, it attracted performers such as Enrico Caruso, Sarah Bernhardt, W. C. Fields, Will Rogers, Al Jolson, and John McCormack. The auditorium had boxes, 2 balconies with elevators, and seating for 3,548. The stage was equipped to handle large-scale productions and spectacles such as operas. The world’s 2nd-largest, next to the Hippodrome in New York, it measured 130' wide, 104' deep, 110' high, and could be lifted to 4 different levels by hydraulic jacks. On one level was an 80x40x10-ft. water tank used for water spectacles. The theater was built in 1907 by an operating company headed by Max Faetkenhauer at a cost of $800,000. After several years, theater operations were leased to B. F. Keith. In 1922 Walter Reasoner took over operations, followed by RKO in 1929. Remodeling in 1931 made it the largest American theater devoted entirely to motion pictures. A large portion of the stage was removed, while the main floor was lowered and a new mezzanine added to increase seating to above 4,000. In 1933 the theater went bankrupt, and operations were taken over by Warner Bros. In 1951 it became part of the Telenews chain, and in 1972 the property was purchased by Alvin Krenzler. The last of the major downtown movie houses to close, the Hipp’s downfall came when the office space was closed and the theater’s revenues proved insufficient to support the building. The Hippodrome was demolished in 1981 to make way for a parking lot.
The lower pic, the one looking into the auditorium from the stage, appears to have way more than the 500 seats that the caption states. It looks more like 1500-2000 seats, 500 in the balcony alone. The upper pic, looking twds the stage, with the center aisle, is more likely to be the Denis.
Those builders and contractors listed in the advertisement paid for the privilege, and the film paid for their ad placement. Rugoff & Becker, who owned the theatre, paid nothing. McNamara, the theatre architect, apparently opted out. That is the way it was done back in the day. Today, they just buy a little 3" ad in the Voice, put a title on the marquee, turn on the lights and unlock the door, and call that a ‘Grand Opening’.
I think Warrens blue drawing is what architects call a ‘section-through’.
dwodeyla: When they the auditoriums they never re-arced the seats, do you know why, aside from the fact that Joe Saunders was a tightwad? Did they think nobody would notice? Everyone from Boston to Los Angeles noticed.
That blue NY2 carpet is not new, it was there when I worked there in 1999 for Loews. In the theatre 1 side the carpet was the same except it had ‘NY1’ printed on it. Solow ordered and installed it without consulting Loews, and then handed them a bill for 50% of the cost. That’s the way it worked there with everything – he would buy things and make changes that Loews neither needed nor wanted, then he’d bill them for 50%, wreaking havoc on our capital expense and operating budgets. This practice probably weighed heavily in the decisions of Loews, Crown and Clearview to vacate the premises.
Correction: They are no longer involved with the Neiman Marcus Group.
General Cinema sold the Pepsi operations long before they went bankrupt. The proceeds of the Pepsi sale is what they used to buy Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. They had been in the restaurant business back in the 60s, owning Richards Drive-In, Peter Pan Snack Shops and Amy Joy Donut shops (Amy Joy is Richard A. Smith’s daughter). They also had the food operations in the various bowling alleys that they owned. Today, all they (the Smith family) are involved in is the Nieman Marcus-Bergdorf Goodman stores and a small asset management firm.
The Boneyard has an outdoor dining area under the marquee in the front, and the main entrance is now on the west side of the building near the back. This was probably done because there is plentiful parking in that area. The front parking was kind of limited.
Mr. Pipe – Mr. Bispeck, the DM in Baltimore, was previously the manager at the Parmatown Cinema in Cleveland, he left us in the summer of 1972. His first office there in Baltimore was at the Security Sq. Cinema, then shortly after moved over to Columbia City.
The entrance can be seen here