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The following is from the curator at the East Point Historical Society, East Point Ga. Clearing up the confusion. Below statements can be clarified by visiting the EPHS and viewing the records and other documents.
The Fairfax was the First, The Russell and the East Point opened around the same time in 1940. There were 3 Theaters and the theater that Jack refers to was at first, the Russell. The East Point actually occupied all 3 theater buildings at one time or the other.
The East Point Theater was built in 1940 at Spring Ave. and North Church St. (Now the top of the Norman Berry Overpass)
by developer Julian Furstenberg. The Theater was leased to Mion and Murray. It had 800 seats and a fully equipped stage suitable for any type of production.
The Russell was built on Jefferson Ave. by J.A. Ragsdale (one time mayor). It had 650 seats. The contractor was J.R. Griffin.
The Russell was leased to the East Point Amusement Company which also owned the Fairfax in East Point, The Fulton Theater in Hapeville, The Park Theater in College Park and the Hangar Theater on Virginia Ave.
The East Point Theater was destroyed by fire in late November of 1958. (by the way, the full page ad for the opening touted the East Point Theater as being FIRE PROOF, Kinda East Point’s Titanic.)
The East Point Temporarily moved operations to the Fairfax which had closed earlier that year. Operation’s were set up in the fairfax within a few days and operations continued in that building while the old Russell which had also been closed was being prepared. The Russell was ready in enough time for a Christmas Day opening.
To answer Ken Rowe’s question about Street renumbering. Yes, renumbered from a 3 digit to a 4 digit system in 1961.
To confirm (without addresses),
The Fairfax was located On Main St. between Thompson and Dorsey Ave.
The East Point was located at North Church St.
The Russell was located on Jefferson Ave. Across from Russell High School.
The Fairfax and Russell closed in the same year, The East Point burned, then moved for a short time into the old Fairfax and then moved into the old Russell.
Items of interest I have found. 1940 suburban reporter Newspaper, the East Point Theater full page ad to herald the opening shows the Church St. address. It also shows the same exact style of marquee sign on the Church St. building that was on the Russell when they eventually moved into it. The Russell marquee is shown in the same year and is of a different design. In the same photo we have that is also posted here of the Russell theater with the East Point sign, it was in fact, the Russell first. The only change to the Russell and later East Point building was the Marquee.
All of this information is available for viewing (and being compiled and placed in one binder because of this string of discussion) at the East Point Historical Society at 1685 Norman Berry Drive in East Point, Ga. our web address for hours if anyone should want to drop by and view the information is www.EastPointHS.org
We have a a full run from 1932 to 1972 of the Suburban Reporter Newspaper (Hard Copy and Microfilm) with all of the playbills for each week published.
One more note of interest, The Fairfax was the only theater in the city of East Point that allowed African Americans. No lobby entrance was allowed, they could buy their ticket at the window but could only access the balcony via an external staircase on the side of the building. The “Colored section” as it was referred to had it’s own manager who was also African American.
The Ritz was a segregated theatre located at 438 Atlanta Ave.
The theatre opened in 1983 as a twin and was later expanded into a five screen multiplex.
There were two Lakewood Theatres: the original with a seating capacity of around 165 was located at 1725 Lakewood Ave SE and was in operation between 1940 and 1950. The last Lakewood Theatre was located at 2027 Stewart Ave SW, had a seating capacity close to 800 and was in operation between 1969 and 1985. Both have been demolished.
The Hanger Theatre’s address was 1001 Virginia Ave, Hapeville, GA 30354.
According to the 1940 Atlanta City Directory the theatre was located at 819 Donald L Hollowell Parkway NW (formally the Bankhead Highway).
Here is a 2008 photo of what remains of the former Roswell Theatre. According to the 1960 City Directory, the theatreâ€™s address was 944 Canton Street, Roswell, GA.
The American opened around 1930 as the Toyland Theatre.
Here is a 2008 photo of what remains of the upstairs cinema.
Here is a 2008 of what was formally the Skyline/Tysonâ€™s Corner Cinema
Hereâ€™s a 2008 photo of what remains of the West Spring.
Here is a November 2008 photo of what remains of the Lyric. The theatre closed around 1955 and the interior has been completely gutted.
I shutter at the thought that someone might, since it sat abandoned so long after it closed, deem it architecturally significant and make an effort to restore it. Definitely one of the worse cinemas to ever grace the landscape.
Here is an April 2008 photo of the former Cinema Theatre. Aside from leveling the floor and opening up the projection booth (or was it the balcony) it appears that much of the auditorium is still intact. Although the screen is gone the drapes which adorned it remain. I have yet to ever see a theatre which was configured in such a fashion.
Questions: Did this theatre have balcony seating?
Was there a concession stand on the auditorium level as well as the main level?
Here is an April 2008 photo of the former Palm Theatre.
Here is a March 2008 photo of what remains of the Fairfax Theatre. Its interior has been completely gutted along with most of the exterior.
Apparently the Bardlick Theatre is no more. The 5105 Bradlick Road address is an office park which appears to have been built around the time the theatre closed in 1985. The shopping plaza next door does not appear to have ever had a 900 seat theatre as a tenant.
The building which currently occupies the 7857 Heritage Drive address is a three story office complex which appears to have been constructed within the last ten years. The status should be changed to Demolished.
As of late October 2008, the Hybla Cinema appears to have been closed for quite some time: 1, 2, 3
According to Robert Headly, the Lee operated as a cinema 1936-1951, had a seating capacity of 570 and was located at 709 East Washington Street in Falls Church, VA.
The cinema with the 5141 Leesburg Pike address is now a McDonaldâ€™s Restaurant which not only retained but improved on many of the cinemaâ€™s lobby features.
Does anyone have any photos to share of the Langley made when during the time it was operating as a cinema?
Although I did not get to see the interior, I was informed by some of the local merchants that it is relatively good condition.
Here are August 2008 photos of the former Cameo Theatre. Note that the property is for sale. 1, 2, 3
Here is a April 2008 photo of the former Buckingham Theatre.