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Here is another article about the renovations at the Temple Theatre, this one from 2014.
A timeline with the article notes that the house opened in 1937 as the Temple Theatre, was renamed the Strand sometime in the 1940s, and was closed in the 1950s. The Temple replaced the Capitol Theatre, which had burned, on the same site, but the article does not make clear whether it was entirely new construction or just a rebuild within the surviving walls.
Portland Preservation Foundation bought the house in 2013, and restored the earlier name Temple Theatre. The renovations are still ongoing. The Facebookpage has a few photos, including a couple showing the restored marquee.
The State is currently showing movies on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, but nothing is yet announced for September. Five dollar admission, four for children and seniors. They are showing Dunkirk next weekend. Quite a bargain. But so far there is only one showing each night (at 7:30), so don’t be late.
Overture San Diego, the mixed use project slated to replace the California Theatre, has been waiting on official approval of its construction plans to begin demolition. The old office building on the corner of 4th and C, which once held the theater’s entrance, will be incorporated into the new project, but the auditorium is to be demolished and replaced by a new building with shops on the lower floors and several levels of parking both above and below, with the new residential tower rising atop that structure.
To me it seems almost adding insult to injury that the vertical “California” sign is to be duplicated on the old office building, and that the grill concealing the above-ground parking area will be decorated with a mural depicting the theater in its heyday.
You can see the plans for the project here. I’m sure the completed project will be an asset to downtown San Diego, but it’s unfortunate that the historic California Theatre will have been sacrificed to build it.
When the Perry Drive-In opened in the summer of 1971, it was one of about a dozen theaters in the independent circuit operated by John H. “Tommy” Thompson, a long-time Georgia exhibitor. About $125,000 had been expended on the project, exclusive of the land, according to a brief item in the August 9 issue of Boxoffice.
The records of the Grand Forks architectural firm Wells-Denbrook Architects (Theodore B. Wells and Myron Denbrook, Jr.) list a 1938 project at Crosby as the Metro Theatre. I’m not sure if it opened with that name or not. Wells was the lead architect of the project.
The Cactus Drive-In was twinned in 1971, and its late July opening was noted in the August 9 issue of Boxoffice. The drive-in had doubled its car capacity with the expansion, and featured improved amenities such as a new, air conditioned concessions stand. The Cactus was an ABC Interstate Theatres operation.
The August 9, 1971, issue of Boxoffice reported that the Crossroads Cinema I and II in Waterloo had recently been opened by St. Cloud, Minnesota-based chain Cinema Entertainment Corp.. The original house seated 540 in Cinema I and 460 in Cinema II. Cinema Entertainment then operated 14 theaters in Iowa, Minnesota, and North Dakota.
The records of the Grand Forks architectural firm Wells-Denbrook Architects (Theodore B. Wells and Myron Denbrook, Jr.) list the Zelda Theatre at Grafton, North Dakota, as a 1945 project. Postwar restrictions on building materials could account for the opening of the house being delayed until 1947. The original owner of the Zelda was named Ted Hoffman.
The May 3, 1976, issue of Boxoffice said that Arlo Henriksen, operator of the Strand Theatre in Grafton, had taken over operation of the rival Zelda Theatre from Marvin Agotness.
The records of the Grand Forks architectural firm Wells-Denbrook Architects (Theodore B. Wells and Myron Denbrook, Jr.) lists as a 1940 project the remodeling of the Grand Theatre at Michigan, North Dakota. As the Legion Theatre opened in 1940, I think it likely that Legion was the new name of the remodeled Grand.
I’ve been unable to find the Grand mentioned in any of the earlier theater trade journals, but Michigan was mentioned in a brief item in The Moving Picture World of June 4, 1914, which said only that “L. Thompson will open a moving picture theater at Michigan, N. D.”
A brief item in Boxoffice of May 19, 1956, said that the darkened theater at Michigan, North Dakota, had reopened.
This web page has some information about the Grand Theatre in Hallock (I don’t believe any of the accompanying photos depict the Grand, though.) The page says that the Grand opened in November, 1920. It doesn’t give the closing year, but does note that the house operated into the CinemaScope era. A drive-in theater, under the same ownership, opened nearby in 1954.
The article also mentions Frederick “Casey” Jones, a local mechanic and radio repair man who, in the late 1920s, built a sound system for the theater when the owner was unable to afford the commercial systems then coming on the market. Jones later went on to work for Minneapolis-based Ultraphone Sound Systems, where he made many improvements in the company’s theater sound systems. Over the next couple of decades he proved to be an imaginative inventor in many fields, and invented, among other things, the first practicable refrigeration system for long haul trucks. There is an interesting short biography of him on this page from the Minnesota Science & Technology Hall of Fame.
Dave Kenney’s book (which I’ve found to be quite reliable) says that the Arcade Theatre closed in 1978, not 1969.
marrossini: Dave Kenney’s book Twin Cities Picture Show lists the Randolph Theatre operating from 1937 to 1956 at 1326 Randolph Avenue. I haven’t found any details about it, though.
Mr. V.E. McGee had an addition built at his theater in Amherst in 1914, as noted in the April 25 issue of The American Contractor that year. The 30x36-foot addition was designed by Loraine, Ohio, architect H.O. Wurmser.
Page 8 of this PDF has two early photos of the Empire Theatre, plus a small photo of the house as the Amherst, probably taken around 1954. The false front on the building might have been from Mr. Wurmser’s project of 1914.
The renovated Delft Theatre is now the home of the Delft Bistro, a bar and restaurant. Their web site says they show movies nightly, but doesn’t give any information about format. I suspect they are just running blue ray movies. They have a calendar style schedule on their “Films” page, but it’s blank, so you have to call the restaurant to find out what the feature film is on any given night.
Cezar Del Valle’s site has a closeup of the Varieties first published in the November 16, 1912, issue of The Moving Picture World. The house was featuring Sarah Bernhardt’s prestige film Camille.
According to this article dated April 19, 2000, the Crown Theatre at Aspen Hill Shopping Center was set to close on April 30. Crown Theatres, which had taken over the 30-year lease on the house in 1996, was unable to negotiate terms for a renewal that were satisfactory to both the company and the landlord.
I’m not sure where the theater was located in this complex, but it is gone now. This directory on the Neonopolis web site shows a number of vacant spaces along with an assortment of shops, restaurants, offices, a brew pub, a nightclub, and even a gallery operated by the Las Vegas Art Museum, but no movie theater. The short-lived Krave Massive is long gone.
Okay, I’ve found the connection (I didn’t look long enough before.) This house was indeed opened by Crown Theatres, LLC, based in South Norwalk, Connecticut. Here is their Bloomberg data page.
Crown Cinema Corporation, as I noted in my earlier comment, was a different company, based in Missouri and headed by Richard Durwood. It was absorbed by Dallas-based Hollywood Theaters in 1996.
The “Crown Cinemas Corporation” page linked from the “Previously operated by” field on this page lists the theaters in Connecticut as having been run by the same corporation that had this house, but I believe it is mistaken.
It’s often difficult to track the various companies that have owned and operated theaters, but I don’t believe that the Crown Cinemas that opened this house in the early 2000s was related to the Crown Theaters, based in Norwalk, Connecticut, which was operating theaters in that state at least as far back as the 1990s.
I’ve also been unable to discover if the Crown Cinemas that opened this theater was a successor firm to the Crown Cinema Corporation that was operating theaters in Missouri, Kansas and Ohio in the 1990s. That company was controlled by Richard Durwood, younger brother of Stan Durwood, then chairman of AMC.
According to this 1996 article) the company that owned some of the theaters Crown Cinema Management was operating (and in which Crown Cinema Corporation was a partner) was forced into bankruptcy. Crown Cinema Corporation was then sold to a Dallas-based theater company called Hollywood Theaters Inc. I don’t know if the name continued to be used after that or not. It’s possible that the company that opened this house in Skokie in 2001 had just picked up the dead company’s name.
It’s all very confusing, except for the fact that I can find no connection between Crown Theaters of Norwalk and Richard Durwood’s Crown Cinemas Corporation of Missouri, nor any connection between the Norwalk company and this theater in Skokie. Theater companies really ought to exercise more originality when choosing their names.
An article by the Grayslake Historical Society on this web page says that the Star Theatre was located at 255 Center Street. The Star, operated by Peter Newhouse, opened on June 5, 1920.
The building is now occupied by a bar called Charlie’s Garden Club. There are a couple of photos of the building on the bar’s Facebook page.
The Savoy Theatre was mentioned in the April 22, 1916, issue of The Moving Picture World. Both the Savoy and the Crescent were then being managed by Benny Van Borssum. Both houses had been in operation since at least 1912, when they were both listed in the Annual Report of the State Bureau of Inspection.
Ora222: One of soybean’s comments on another theater page indicate that he was born in 1950, so he would not have seen the original release of Gone With The Wind when it ran at the old Grand in 1939. It’s quite possible that the re-release soybean saw “…[w]hen I was growing up….” (so probably either 1961 or 1967, but possibly 1954) was shown at this house.
The February 21, 1914, issue of The Moving Picture World had this item about the Majestic:
“The Pastime Theater Company, which purchased the interests of George R. Covell and J. G. Campbell in the Majestic Theater at East Moline announced its intention of adding vaudeville to the moving picture program.”
The name change from American Theatre to State Theatre took place around the middle of 1949. The Terre Haute Tribune ran an ad for the American on June 27, 1949, but was running an ad for the State by July 10 of that year. The state was in operation at least as late as July of 1955. As the State the house showed a lot of westerns, adventure films, and comedies.
Two slide shows with both vintage and modern photos of the New Mission Theatre can be found on this page of the web site of Kerman Morris Architects, the firm that handled the recent renovation for Alamo Drafthouse.
Principals of the firm are Elizabeth Kerman-Morris and Edward Morris.