Paramount Theatre

560 Bay Street,
Stapleton, NY 10304

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Showing 201 - 225 of 246 comments

Vito
Vito on June 2, 2005 at 8:43 am

Hi Jean, it’s been a while.
To answer Garth’s question, I remember working the Paramount on Christmas day 1953, the day “The Robe” opened in CinemaScope. We were closed the day before to install the 46 ft screen and stereo sound. I recall we were the only theatre open in Stapelton at the time. I don’t think the Liberty made it into the 50s, perhaps Jean knows when the Liberty closed, but I am sure it was closed by 1953.
Jeffrey and Jean, it would be wonderful if the marquee were preserved and kept, but have you seen it lately? I doubt it can be saved, but perhaps rebuilt or replaced with something simular to the what they did at the NY Paramount. Certainly, as Jean sugggested, the name of the building should include the name Paramount.

Jean
Jean on June 2, 2005 at 8:07 am

I pass that way all the time. If they DO keep the marquee, they should call it the Paramount Building or Paramount Condos. ( strictly my opinion ) The seats are for sale at the American Warehouse on Staten Island. Located at Greenfield and Tompkins Avenue.

FoxFan
FoxFan on June 1, 2005 at 8:22 pm

a friend of mine told me there will be new condo’s built here on the old site – and the front will remain the same – as of a movie theatre!

Garth
Garth on June 1, 2005 at 6:42 pm

vito , as a veteran of these theatres do you know when the liberty closed? i grew up in stapleton in the ‘60s , i was always at the paramount but do not recall the liberty being open….

Vito
Vito on May 22, 2005 at 11:55 am

There were no obsturcted seats anywhere in the Paramount.
The Liberty on Canal Street had some beams supporting the balcony, perhaps you were thinking of that. You are right about the cavernous orchestra section which seated about 1800, there were about 500 seats in the balcony. I sure do miss that theatre.

OldSchool
OldSchool on May 22, 2005 at 11:16 am

My mother once took me to the Paramount to see a “Planet of the Apes” Marathon. All five movies back to back. Does anyone remember that. We actually sat in that great balcony for all five movies. (Ok . we arrived late for the first show) Am I the only person who witnessed this. It was in the late 70’s. I was young so I kind of remember the lower level being somewhat cavernous. I once went to see a movie called Grizzly there. The theater was packed. I kind of remember there being support beams that obstructed some views of the screen. Am I correct?

Vito
Vito on May 12, 2005 at 7:16 am

While the St.George was under going the first attempt at restoration, we asked the new owner of the Paramount if we could salvage anything to use, he said we could have anything we wanted, but sadly their was little left that had not been either destroyed or removed. I took four marquee letters which spell out my name. It was like visiting a graveyard, I remember standing on the stage looking towards the balcony and remembering what it once was, it was one of the most depressing days of my life.

Garth
Garth on May 11, 2005 at 7:23 pm

i can confirm mp775’s earlier comment about the work order posted on the theatre , it is valid thru september. a local business owner told me the owner of the property is going ahead with plans to convert the site to condos/apartments.

Garth
Garth on March 17, 2005 at 3:16 pm

well said vito, very sad. also, thank you for your wisdom regarding these s.i. theatres.

Vito
Vito on March 17, 2005 at 3:09 pm

Gee TC what a sad picture that is. Does anyone have the great 1940s photo posted in the Advance a while back.

350S10
350S10 on September 21, 2004 at 11:55 pm

I’m a Historic Preservation Student. My sole project this semester is to preserve a building in my community. As u can tell I’ve chosen the Paramount and I’m looking for any information about the building that could help (ie. of construction and impact on the community). In regards to the construction permits on the building they really don’t mean anything if the building gets landmarked asap so dont despair. Thanks in advance for any info.

Garth
Garth on September 14, 2004 at 8:21 pm

someone has already bought the building,and from what i have read in the s.i. advance that person will not use it as an entertainment forum, i believe townhouses and retail shops are his plan.

Jean
Jean on September 14, 2004 at 7:51 pm

Though I believe it is too late to save this theatre, I will try contacting someone who may live near there in order to get the realty office phone number for you. Otherwise, try contacting Vito above. He may be able to get the phone number for you.

paulpaul
paulpaul on September 14, 2004 at 6:03 pm

Hello everyone, i want to see this building restored. To go there and see indie film showings and local bands play would realy be a site. i need more information regarding this building, im looking to buy it, anybody suggest specific ideas ?

Vito
Vito on August 31, 2004 at 12:37 pm

Robert
Log on to St George/theaters/1864/
There is a movement to bring movies to the St George

RobertR
RobertR on August 31, 2004 at 10:42 am

It’s too bad this could not be saved as an all purpose theatre. Since the owners of The St George seem adamant about never running movies, a venue like this could get alot of publicity. The Suffern and Loews Jersey City do well with sporadic classic nights.

Vito
Vito on August 31, 2004 at 10:15 am

When I worked the Paramount, we kept the balcony closed during mid-week in order to save costs. We avoided some usher staff as well as additional cleaning crew. At least once a night I was asked tp patroll the balcony to be sure no one sneaked up there but when I found someone up there, and I did, I would let them be as long as they were well behaved and carried their trash with them when they left. My manager, Mr.Johns, was very understanding about it as well.
His biggest concern was stuff thrown down to the orchestra level, as well as people being snuck in thru the balcony door leading to the stairway down to the street. There were 500 seats in the balcony.
All the seats were replaced in 1961 when the theatre was refurbished.
Fresh paint was applied as well as some but not all new carpet.The theatre reopened with “Flower Drum Song”.

Garth
Garth on August 20, 2004 at 7:43 pm

i remember the balcony was always closed,when i would attend matinees as a teen. my dad took my brothers and i to an evening showing of the clint eastwood flick “high plains drifter” ,for once the balcony was open, and it was magnificent!they also always had a second feature.

Vito
Vito on August 12, 2004 at 7:04 am

I would agree with Garth, I do not recall the Paramount ever being used as an adult theatre, however during the time it ran as a nightclub some 16mm adult films were shown from time to time.
I remember a halloween screening of “Rocky Horror Picture” Show"
in 16mm was also held.

Garth
Garth on August 11, 2004 at 8:52 pm

the theatre never became an adult movie house. the owners were going ahead with that plan, but when the news hit the local paper, community opposition was too strong.the owners relented, and closed the theatre.

Vito
Vito on July 21, 2004 at 12:28 pm

Holmes, I think the ship has sailed on that.
The Paramount sat for several years with no one interested in saving it, and now someone has purchased the building who has no interest at all in keping it as a theatre…. no interest at all
I have difficulty even driving by, it’s just too sad

sholmes202
sholmes202 on July 21, 2004 at 11:21 am

Is there no way to save the old girl? restore her and perhaps even add a film school and book store. Do we NEED more high rises on the Island?

Eddie
Eddie on June 22, 2004 at 9:17 am

I was born in Rosebank in 1924. As a kid we would take the trolleycar down to Stapelton or St. George
to see a movie and 5 acts of vaudville, plus Don
Baker at the organ! What wonderful memories I have
of those days. I now live in Pennsylvania (Yardley)
but my parents and brother are buried on the Island,
so I do get back every once in a while. It makes me
sad to see how the Island has deteriorated over the
course of my lifetime. I’m glad I lived in the “glory
days” even though the country was in a depression.

Does anyone remember the name of the ice cream
parlor that was a few doors from the Paramount on
Bay St? It was wonderful to go there after attend-
ing the movies. Wish I could turn back the hands of
time

Vito
Vito on May 14, 2004 at 7:30 am

I guess it’s really over. I won’t want to even drive by the old girl while they destroy her