Comments from bigjoe59

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bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Capitol Theatre on Sep 19, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Hello-

i certainly agree with the sentiment of Paul L.’s post but and there always a but. as much as NYC’s long gone movie palaces are beloved by film buffs the majority of said film buffs don’t seem to want to acknowledge one very simple fact. that fact being that by the late 50s said movie palaces the Roxy especially because of its huge size had become just plain economically un-viable as a single screen movie theater. in fact i bet the Roxy because of its size had become economically un-viable as a single screen movie theater yearssssss before it was decided to demolish it.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about City of Aurora seeks citizen about what should happen to the Century 16 on Sep 4, 2012 at 8:10 pm

not to sound uncaring but why not just reopen it? i don’t understand why it should be abandoned as a movie theater?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Hammerstein's Victoria Theatre on Sep 3, 2012 at 6:24 pm

Hello-

i love books about NYC theaters stage or film. one of my favorite’s is Mary C. Henderson’s “42 St.” the book contains 12 chapters or bios one might say for each of the theaters built on 42 st. between 7th and 8th Avenues. the 1st theater built on the block was the American which was on the southside closer to 8th in i believe 1895?

the chapter on the American begins with this statement-“the American has the dubious distinction of being the 1st theater built on the block and the first torn down”. to which i reacted ??????? the 2nd theater built on the block Hammerstein’s Victoria opened in 1899 and was torn down the end of 1915 to built the Rialto the 1st “movie palace” in Times Square which opened in 1916. now the American which was boarded up after a fire in 1930 wasn’t torn down until the spring of 1931 i believe. this being the case how can Henderson say the American was the 1st of the 12 theaters on the block torn down if the Victoria was torn at the end of 1915 a good 16 years before the American. this is where my question comes in.

there seems to be a wide range of opinions as to whether Hammerstein’s Victoria was a)completely torn down/demolished as we would use the term today or if it was b)simply gutted to the bare skeletal structure and the Rialto built within said skeletal frame. so which is it? if its b) that would certainly give some credence to Henderson’s statement about the American.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Aug 31, 2012 at 10:00 pm

Hello-

i have been going to the Ziegfeld since it opened Dec. 1969 with the reserved seat engagement of “Marooned”. which brings me to my question. recently the theater has had special quick exclusive engagements like the 2 week run of “The Princess and The Frog” before it opened wide. to which does anyone remember what the theater’s last exclusive regular open ended 1st run engagement was?

the last one i can think of is Oct. 1996
release of the Katz/Harris restoration of
“Vertigo”.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Cinerama Dome and ArcLight Cinemas on Aug 30, 2012 at 7:45 pm

to Howard B.–

thanks for your reply. eventhough i live in NYC i am quite aware of Grauman’s Chinese and the El Capitan(Paramount)theaters. i last visited L.A. the spring of 2004. to which i know these two theaters held many exclusive first run engagements in their heyday so if you lived in L.A. you had to go to these theaters. but in the 1955 – 1972 period i mentioned in my original post i wasn’t aware these two theaters held reserved seat engagements as did the other 4 theaters mentioned in said post.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about TCL Chinese Theatre on Aug 30, 2012 at 7:30 pm

Hello From NYC-

i last visited L.A. the spring of 2004 and its nice to see that this theater is still alive and well. a question- as i understand it its still a 1st run theater so how does it host the classic films showings if its hosting a new film? or are the classic films showings at the 6-plex next door?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Uptown Theater on Aug 28, 2012 at 9:02 pm

Hello From NYC-

i have only been to the Uptown once. it was April of 1963 and i was on a family vacation during which we took in a showing of “How The West Was Won”.

now i discovered Cinema Treasures the last week of January 2011. so i decided to create a project for myself. said project was simple. using CT i was wondering how many of the grand old movie theaters/palaces built in the 1913-1941 heyday of such building were still single screen and still operating as 1st run theaters since the day they opened. after much browsing of CT of all the grand old movie theaters/palaces built in the U.S. in the 1913-1941 period i could find only 2 count ‘em 2 still single screen and were still operating as 1st run theaters since the day they opened. one is the Uptown and the other is Grauman’s Chinese in Hollywood. certainly an accomplishment.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Pacific 1-2-3 on Aug 23, 2012 at 8:12 pm

Hello From-

i first traveled out to L.A. in the spring of 1980 and did so for the next several years. to which my question- the first several years i went to the Pacific on a handful of occasions. by the luck of the draw the film i chose was always playing in the main auditorium. when i first went came out to L.A. in 1980 i could
swear in fact i’m 99% certain they still had the curved Cinerama screen up in the main auditorium. so did they keep it up from the early 80s to when the theater closed in August of ‘94 or was it replaced with a regular flat screen at some point?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Pantages Theatre on Aug 23, 2012 at 7:29 pm

Hello From NYC-

i read above that the theater closed up as a movie house in Jan. of ‘77. to which a question- the last reserved seat engagement was “Tora Tora Tora” which opened the fall of '70. so i was wondering what was the decor of the theater’s interior at that point as opposed to today?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Aug 21, 2012 at 9:44 pm

corny and hokey as it might be the film has always been a favorite of mine. i wondered how long it ran at the Ziegfeld so its nice to know it still holds the long run title. i’m guessing the main reason for the long run was that the film was released when studios still did exclusive engagements at one theater for “big” films. so if you wanted to see “Ryan’s Daughter” you had to go to the Ziegfeld. this was some years before studios started opening their “big” films in 2,000 to 3,000 theaters across the country on the same day.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Cinerama Dome and ArcLight Cinemas on Aug 21, 2012 at 3:13 am

Hello from NYC-

i thank my fellow posters from L.A.for info about the Dome’s single lens “Cinerama” engagements. i have a new question for you.

as i see it the heyday so to speak of reserved seat or to use the proper term roadshow engagements was the Oct. 1955 opening of “Oklahoma” thru the Dec. 1972 opening of “Man of La Mancha” after which the studios dropped the use of said policy. now in the immediate Hollywood area there was the Cinerama Dome and up on Hollywood Blvd. the Pantages, the Warmer Hollywood known on this site as the Pacific 1,2,3 and the Egyptian for a total of four theaters. but during the aforementioned approx. 17 year period the studios released a number of their “big” films on roadshow engagements so i should think more than four theaters were needed.

so this is my question- during the 17 year period mentioned above what other theaters in the L.A. area were regularly used by the studios for exclusive roadshow engagements other than the four in the immediate Hollywood area?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Aug 21, 2012 at 2:55 am

Hello-

in recent years the Ziegfeld has had an occasional exclusive engagement. for instance the two week limited engagement of “The Princess and the Frog” with an accompanying show at Roseland. but discounting such special engagements what was the last time this theater had a regular open ended exclusive engagement of a new film?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Cinerama Dome and ArcLight Cinemas on Aug 13, 2012 at 8:36 pm

Hello Again From NYC To My Fellow Posters
In L.A..–

i thank my fellow posters in L.A. for answering my many inquiries about the Cinerama Dome. a new two part question-

*since the Dome was rather technologically advanced for 1963 i assumed the period from groundbreaking to the opening night of “It’s A Mad Mad Mad Mad World” was at the least a year if not more. yet a fellow poster replied that the period of time from the ground breaking to the opening night of IAMMMMW was only 18 weeks. is that true? it seems like an awfully short period of time in which to build a fairly large theater. the reason i bring up how long it took to build the theater is simple. i am trying to determine if the decision to abandon the 3-Strip Cinerama process in favor of the single lens version was made before the groundbreaking or after construction of the theater had begun.

*now if my count is correct there were 10 single lens Cinerama films. “Its A Mad Mad Mad Mad World” from Nov.‘63 being the 1st and “Krakatoa-East of Java” from July'69 being the last. to which a question- did all 10 single lens Cinerama films play the Dome or did some play whatever old time movie palace in the Hollywood area that had been converted to show the original 3-Strip process?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Cinerama Dome and ArcLight Cinemas on Aug 10, 2012 at 9:25 pm

Hello From NYC-

i thank my fellow movie buffs in L.A. for
answering my questions about L.A. movie going.
i have a new question that i’m betting has
an interesting answer.

the Cinerama Dome opened Nov.‘63 with the premiere of the 1st single lens Cinerama film “Its A Mad Mad Mad Mad World”. now considering how technologically advanced the theater was for Nov.'63 i’m guessing the groundbreaking for the theater was at least 1 year maybe 2 years? before the opening night. which is where my question comes in. when the groundbreaking took place the 1st narrative 3-Strip Cinerama film “The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm” hadn’t even opened yet. so does that mean before “…..Grimm” and the 2nd narrative 3-Strip film “How The West Was Won” even opened the powers that be knew in 1961 that the 3-Strip process would go the way of the dodo bird and built the Dome from the get go as a single lens Cinerama house?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Roxy Theatre on Aug 9, 2012 at 6:33 pm

Hello Again-

as i mentioned in previous posts in the late 50s Hollywood was still operating on the A movie and B movie production level. now just because a film is a A level picture doesn’t mean its going to any good or receive critical acclaim or be a hit at the box office. to which what was the last A level picture to play the Roxy that was both critically well received and had a healthy run?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre Centre on Jul 24, 2012 at 1:03 am

Hello Again-

i hope i understood my fellow posters replies correctly. to which that none of the grand old movie theaters or palaces to use the popular term built in Toronto specifically to be 1st run houses are still in operation as such from the day they opened. this puts Toronto in the same boat as NYC, Chicago and San Francisco.

also to my fellow poster’s comment on the Castro Theater in San Francisco. the Castro is most certainly a movie palace and it deserves our admiration in that its in damn good shape and has continued in operation since it opened in 1922. but and there’s always a but. my original post or inquiry was about grand old movie theaters/ palaces that were built from the get go specifically as 1st run theaters. unfortunately the Castro doesn’t qualify since its always been my understanding that the theater was built from the get go as a 2nd/3rd run neighborhood theater.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre Centre on Jul 18, 2012 at 10:01 pm

Hello Again-

i admit i’m not the world’s best typist. so in my post it should read “even if they’re still standing”.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre Centre on Jul 18, 2012 at 9:55 pm

Hello To Canadian Neighbors-

i’m from NYC and have been posting a question on pages for big cities of which Toronto is certainly one. here goes- the big era of grand old movie theater building or palaces to use the popular term in the U.S. was approx. 1913-1941. now none of the grand old movie theaters/palaces built in this period in NYC specifically as 1st run theaters continue to do so if if they’re still standing. now L.A. has Grauman’s Chinese among a few and Washington,D.C. has the Uptown but like NYC San Francisco has zippo. so i was wondering if any of the grand old movie theaters/ palaces built in Toronto in the above mentioned period have continued to operate as 1st run venues in more or less their original condition since the day they opened.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Roxy Theatre on Jul 17, 2012 at 12:53 am

Hello-

sorry about that. i thought anything to do with motion picture exhibition was a legitimate topic. oh, well. never said i was perfect. :–)

therefore since this website is apparently only for the discussion of actual physical theaters rather than motion picture exhibition policy do you know where i could discuss the topic of souvenir programs? thanks in advance.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Roxy Theatre on Jul 15, 2012 at 10:10 pm

Hello-

as always i thank my fellow posters for their replies. today i have an interesting two part question. hear from you soon.

*i have a decent size collection of souvenir programs. i think approx. 120? these are actual souvenir programs that were sold in the the theater lobbies and not the thin but colorful leaflets or pamphlets theaters often gave out
during a film’s run. here’s part one- for all of you with a sizable collection of actual souvenir programs which are your favorites? now this has nothing to do with the quality of the film itself just how well designed you think the program is. my top 3 are “The Greatest Story Ever Told” which may be the most elaborate souvenir program in my collection.“Don Juan” starring John Barrymore. not only is the program itself in mint condition but its a complete program in that is still has the separately printed colorized full length portrait of Barrymore that was placed in the middle of the program. then i would choose “The Ten Commandments” from 1956 which rather than have photos from the film had full color paintings of the scenes. so for people with sizable collections what are your favorites?

*part two. everyone who collects x,y or z whether it be coins, stamps, 1st edition books has a “Holy Grail” that one item they have always wanted but never been able to locate. for movie souvenir programs mine would be the one for “The Birth of a Nation”. i believe TBOAN was the 1st film to sell a souvenir program in the lobby. i found a copy in a movie memorabilia store in L.A. a few years ago but it was in such frayed worn condition there’s was no point in spending the $35. i would be willing to spend a reasonable amount for a near mint if not a mint condition copy.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Roxy Theatre on Jul 13, 2012 at 1:47 am

Hello to Simon S.

thanks for the info about the engagement of “The Robe” at the Roxy. now the film had a souvenir program of which i picked up a almost mint condition copy of in a memorabilia store about ten years ago. which leads to this question-if a film playing at the Roxy had a souvenir program when the film ended its run would the Roxy send all the unsold copies back to the studio in question or did they keep a few? i have always wondered about that.

the reason i ask is simple. in early 1966 i was at my friend’s house after school and noticed a souvenir program for “The Great Race” on the bookshelf. he mentioned his parents had gotten it when the film played its first run engagement at Radio City Music Hall. when TGR had played my local theater they didn’t sell the program. so i said “oh,well”. the next week i had an idea. i wrote a letter to RCMH and inquired as to whether they had any copies left. now this was several months after the film had left the theater. i included a $1 for the program and $1 for s&h. guess what? the next week i received a package from RCMH which contained not only a mint condition copy of the souvenir program but the two $1 bills. :–)

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Roxy Theatre on Jul 12, 2012 at 7:36 pm

Hello-

the first Cinemascope film “The Robe” debuted at the Roxy. but how long did it run on what i assume was an exclusive engagement? the reason i ask is simple. in the approx. 50+ years it was a first run venue even the most successful films ran just so long at Radio City Music Hall.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Jul 9, 2012 at 9:05 pm

Hello Again-

i always enjoy reading my fellow posters comments. to which i myself do not consider this theater in the-“Out Sight~Out of Mind” category. i mean Radio City Music Hall is within spitting distance and people don’t have trouble finding that theater. so considering we humans have the ability to walk and Manhattan has both great bus and subway lines i don’t see how this theater is anymore “out of the way” than any other movie theater in Manhattan.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Jul 9, 2012 at 7:18 pm

Hello To My Fellow Posters-

there’s one statement in the doom and gloom article from this past Sunday’s N Y Post that seems made up simply to give the article bite. it says patrons were shocked when they arrived at the Ziegfeld the Memorial Day weekend an the doors were looked. but why would people have shown up at the theater that weekend if it was temporarily closed and there- fore couldn’t have had any advertised screening times.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Roxy Theatre on Jul 2, 2012 at 7:39 pm

Hello- the Roxy was torn down if i remember correctly June/July of 1960. which prompts this question-

at that point Hollywood was still operating on the A level and B level movie system. so does anyone know what the last successful long run of an A level film was a the Roxy?