Comments from bigjoe59

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bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about TCL Chinese Theatre on Aug 26, 2014 at 6:18 pm

Hello From NYC-

before I found this website I was unaware that this theater hosted roadshow engagements or reserved seat movie as me and my friends called them. to which my question. the period from the Oct. 1955 opening of Oklahoma to the Dec. 1972 opening of Man of La Mancha I refer to as the prime roadshow period. now during this period did the Chinese host any roadshow engagements other than West Side Story and Hello Dolly?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about TCL Chinese Theatre on Aug 26, 2014 at 6:18 pm

Hello From NYC-

before I found this website I was unaware that this theater hosted roadshow engagements or reserved seat movie as me and my friends called them. to which my question. the period from the Oct. 1955 opening of Oklahoma to the Dec. 1972 opening of Man of La Mancha I refer to as the prime roadshow period. now during this period did the Chinese host any roadshow engagements other than West Side Story and Hello Dolly?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Aug 18, 2014 at 3:24 pm

Hello-

this question is for devotees of the good olde reserved seat policy or to use the trade term roadshow policy. of course the only roadshow engagement this theater hosted was its initial film “Marooned”. so for the Oct. 1955 to Dec. 1972 prime roadshow period did anyone attend or know of a reserved seat run that did not have a souvenir program?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Cinerama Dome and ArcLight Cinemas on Aug 18, 2014 at 3:17 pm

Hello From NYC-

I refer to the Oct. 1955 opening of Oklahoma to the Dec. 1972 opening of Man of La Mancha as the prime roadshow period. so from its opening Nov. 1963 to when the roadshow policy was discontinued the Dome hosted many a reserved seat engagement. to which my question- can anyone remember a roadshow engagement at the Dome that did not have a souvenir program?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about TCL Chinese Theatre on Aug 10, 2014 at 10:56 am

to Escott O. Norton-

thanks for the reply to my inquiry. to which I want to make sure I understand your reply. so are you saying that although the Chinese is now a state of the art IMAX theater following its Sept. 2013 reopening that it still faces the same problem as the Ziegfeld in Manhattan? a companion question. since its reopening have there been any “big” films that had almost sell out crowds? when the theater reopened last Sept. its new sound and projection was highly lauded by everyone. yet from the posting by the person who saw Catching Fire on Sun. two days after it opened the person was shocked the theater was at the most 20% full. to bad if that’s the case.

in Manhattan many theaters have discount rates for shows before 12 noon but the Ziegfeld is not one of them. so if a “big” film opens at a number of theaters in Manhattan that offer the discount rate I will see it at the Ziegfeld because while it may sell out at the smaller theaters I know no matter how critically lauded the film is the Ziegfeld will be at the most 25% filled.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Aug 8, 2014 at 10:02 am

to Ed S.–

it is certainly sad especially since I remember the Mayfair/Demille as one of the prime roadshow houses from 1955-1972(its last roadshow was The Shoes of the Fisherman Nov. 1968).

to which a question. after I discovered this wonderful site the last week of Jan. 2012 I created a project for myself. said project being to find the 1st theater built in Manhattan brick by brick from the ground up with the intent of showing movies or flickers as they were called. using this site the oldest I was able to find is the Crescent which was located at 36 W. 135 St. and opened on the site the night of Dec. 16, 1909 as a combo picture house and vaudeville theater.

I contacted the New York Historical Society and asked them since if anyone could say authoritatively they could. guess what? the Reference Librarian e-mailed back and said even they are a tad fuzzy on the 1st purpose built brick by brick from the ground up movie theater in Manhattan. since whatever “movie theaters” existed in Manhattan in the first several years of the biz were music halls, vaudeville theaters, legitimate theaters or decent sized unused retail spaces that were simply converted to show films you would think the first purpose built brick by brick from the ground up movie theater would have been made note of in the press of the day.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Uptown Theater on Aug 6, 2014 at 12:45 pm

to Coate-

again many many thanks for the list of the other D.C. houses the studios used for roadshow engagements. it was rather kind of you to do so. added to the Uptown list you kindly provided for me I guess this covers all the prime Oct.1955-Dec.1972 roadshow engagements. also when you have a spare moment I would greatly appreciate your take on why Circus World’s roadshow run at the Uptown lasted only 3 weeks whereas other hyped roadshow epics which likewise received critically mixed reviews sometimes lasted 15-20 weeks.thanks in advance.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about TCL Chinese Theatre on Aug 6, 2014 at 12:28 pm

Hello From NYC-

in Manhattan the Ziegfeld is still in my opinion the theater to see a big action and or science fiction/fantasy film. this is for both sound and projection which brings me to my question.

no matter how critically well received a film might be and no matter how popular it is with moviegoers the Ziegfeld is never very full even at optimum times like Sat. or Sun. screenings. this is of course due to the fact that every action/science fiction/fantasy film opens on 2,000-3,000 screens on the same day. now I’m assuming no film which plays the Chinese will be playing in another theater in the immediate Hollywood area. but there is all of L.A.. so even with the recent upgrade at the Chinese does it in fact have the same problem as the Ziegfeld?

I remember last Nov. a poster mentioned he and friends went to a Sun. afternoon screening only two days after it opened of Catching Fire and the theater was at the most 20% full.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Uptown Theater on Aug 5, 2014 at 5:16 pm

to Coate-

many many thanks for your detailed list. it was quite kind of you. since you appear to be quite well versed on the subject a two part question.

*during the prime roadshow era(Oct. 1955-Dec.1972) Manhattan had 7 large 1st run venues that the studios used for roadshow engagements-Criterion, Loew’s State, RKO Palace, Demille ,Warner, Rivoli and the Loew’s Captiol. while it would be nice to have as detailed a list per the Uptown for all of D.C.’s roadshow houses that’s asking a bit much so could you at least name what other D.C. houses were used by the studios for roadshow runs.thanks.

*I’m not saying it was Oscar material or one of the best large scale action epics but Circus World’s 3 week roadshow rum seems inordinately short. I don’t know how long its roadshow run at the Warner Cinerama was but it was way longer than 3 weeks. you would figure with all the pre-lease hype for CW and whatever advance sales were in place before opening night what’s up. again I’m not saying it was Oscar material or one of the great large scale action epics but there were a number of roadshow epics in New York that got a mixed critical response but still ran for 15-20 weeks.
so what’s with CW’s 3 week D.C. roadshow run?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Aug 3, 2014 at 5:18 pm

to Al A.–

as always thanks for your reply. while I am happy this theater is still alive and well as stated in my last e-mail as hard as I have tried I can’t remember the last time this theater hosted an exclusive engagement. so i suppose it had to be before the opening in 2,000 to 3,000 theaters on the same day trend started. for instance were Close Encounters of the Third Kind(Nov. 1977) and The Rose(Nov. 1979)exclusive runs?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Aug 3, 2014 at 5:18 pm

to Al A.–

as always thanks for your reply. while I am happy this theater is still alive and well as stated in my last e-mail as hard as I have tried I can’t remember the last time this theater hosted an exclusive engagement. so i suppose it had to be before the opening in 2,000 to 3,000 theaters on the same day trend started. for instance were Close Encounters of the Third Kind(Nov. 1977) and The Rose(Nov. 1979)exclusive runs?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Aug 3, 2014 at 3:32 pm

Hello to Al A.–

you have always been kind to answer my inquiries so here’s a good one that I have not been able to find the answer to but I bet you know it. even after studios abandoned the reserved seat exhibition policy they still opened their “big” films in one maybe two theaters in Manhattan. so do you know the last exclusive engagement this theater hosted? I’m speaking of new films so the Oct. 1996 exclusive run of the restored “Vertigo” doesn’t count.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Jul 29, 2014 at 3:51 pm

to Bill H.–

thanks for the other titles from when the studios still used the Ziegfeld for exclusive 1st run engagements. since this theater is the place to see widescreen films that’s why it was frequently sold out years ago. it was the only theater in Manhattan if the not the city playing a film.

which prompts two additional questions-

*as I stated in my post if people had no trouble finding and getting to the theater 20-25 years ago how is it “off the beaten path” today?

*what was in fact the last exclusive 1st run engagement of a studio film at the Ziegfeld? the special 2 week runs of Dreamgirls and The Princess and the Frog before hey opened wide don’t count.:–)

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Jul 29, 2014 at 2:58 pm

to AL A.–

after posting my query I looked up on Amazon and both a vhs and dvd of CAGS have been released. I am surprised I never came across either when home video stores were all over Manhattan.

also a new question you’re going to need to put your thinking cap on for. in the NYC metropolitan area countless theaters were designed by premiere movie theater architects Thomas Lamb and John Ebberson. so many I figured how did either one have time to eat or sleep. and this isn’t even counting other theaters they designed across the country. now rather recently I read that after their careers were up and running both created firms that had architects other than them. so that many of the movie theaters attributed to “Thomas Lamb” per se may have actually been designed by someone else in the firm. this sounded reasonable to me since I can’t imagine how either Lamb or Ebberson could possibly have designed and coordinated construction all the theater attributed to them.

to which my question- how can one find out how many theaters attributed to either Lamb or Ebberson were actually personally designed by them? much in the same vein as how many buildings, monuments etc… attributed to the firm of McKim/Meade/White were actually designed by McKim, Meade or White?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Jul 29, 2014 at 2:40 pm

to robboehm-

I suppose we all have different takes on what’s “off the beaten path”. being a native life long New Yorker nothing is off the beaten path for me.

per you comment the Ziegfeld is only two blocks from Radio City Music Hall. also when the Ziegfeld was still used by the studios for exclusive 1st run engagement people had no trouble finding it. you should have seen the block long lines for Close Encounters of the Third Kind. The Rose among others. likewise the restored Lawrence of Arabia, My Fair Lady & Vertigo.

so if people had no trouble finding/getting to the theater 25 or 20 years ago they shouldn’t have any trouble today.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Jul 28, 2014 at 4:01 pm

Hello-

I was thinking about all the roadshow engagements this theater hosted in the prime Oct. 1955 to Dec. 1972 period. one in particular came to mind “Cast A Giant Shadow” released by United Artists and starring Kirk Douglas which opened here the Spring of 1966.

to which my question- of all the films which played this theater on a roadshow engagement CAGS is the only one I have never seen on home video vhs let alone dvd or blu-ray. I have always wanted to see the film to judge it for myself. could there be some legal hold up as to why its never been out on any home video format.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Ziegfeld Theatre on Jul 28, 2014 at 3:50 pm

to CConnolly1-

like you I always like going to the Ziegfeld for the quality of the projection and sound. plus like you I am surprised the theater is still in operation. the overhead most be sizable. I’m guessing the reason the theater is still open as a 1st run venue is that Bow Tie Cinemas would have a revolt on their hands if it was twinned, demolished or converted to other use.

also no matter how well reviewed a film is and no matter how popular the film might be with the public there’s a very simple reason why the Ziegfeld is rarely if ever at capacity. any film it shows is also playing at probably 12 other theaters in Manhattan.

and might I be so bold as to ask you a question- you are not the first person to refer to the Ziegfeld via “its location is well off the beaten track”. how is a theater on 54th St. off 6th Ave. off the beaten track?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about AMC announces massive reseating project on Jul 17, 2014 at 2:19 pm

i live in NYC and the price for first run films is already WAY TO EXPENSIVE. so like 3-D this is simply a way to soak more $$$ out of the audience. this is especially true since at the Bway & 84 St. multiplex you’re forced to pay for a “reserved seat” even if there’s only 10 people in the theater.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Jul 7, 2014 at 7:37 pm

Hello to my fellow posters-

there are a number of roadshow engagements that had souvenir programs but I do not have in my collection. hence my question. other than EBay does anyone know of a website that sells movie memorabilia? of the handful of sites selling movie memorabilia that I’ve seen the only programs listed are the ones I already have.

I recently read “Movie Roadshows” by Kim Rolston and I was amazed at the number of such films that had souvenir programs I have never come across. any help would be appreciated.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Jul 6, 2014 at 4:26 pm

to techman 707-

the not sending out of messages noting someone has responded to a comment is happening again. I did not receive a note in my inbox that my entry on souvenir programs had been replied to by you..

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Jul 1, 2014 at 5:16 pm

to Ed S.–

the prime roadshow era was from the Oct. 1955 opening of Oklahoma to the Dec. 1972 opening of Man of La Mancha after which the studios discontinued the policy. I have 137 souvenir programs in my collection. I have to admit a dozen or so of that number are not actual souvenir programs sold in the theater lobby but fancy brochures the studio released to publicize the film.

of the 125 souvenir programs in my collection
13 are hardcover.other than the hardcovers in my collection the only other one I know of is for Porgy and Bess which played the Warner.

of the 13 I own two are from films which opened when this theater was the Demille a prime roadshow house. namely Spartacus and Hawaii.

the other 11 are-

The Alamo Around the World in 80 Days Ben-Hur(1959) El Cid The Greatest Story Ever Told How The West Was Won King of Kings(1961) Mutiny on the Bounty(1962) My Fair Lady South Pacific The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm

a bit of info on just how elaborate these hardcover programs could get. both the Ben-Hur and Spartacus programs had a fold out with several watercolor paintings of scenes from the film. and to top that the King of Kings program included a sealed package of 8x10 color photo portraits of the main actors in the film.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Capitol Theatre on Jun 30, 2014 at 8:26 pm

to William-

thanks for the info. as you state the 179min. cut was just used in previews and was cut to 158mins. for the premiere roadshow runs like the one at the Capitol. so however long the film’s roadshow run was at the Capitol the Dodge City sequence was intact the entire run and was only cut for the general release prints which went to neighborhood theaters around NYC.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Jun 30, 2014 at 8:16 pm

to techman 707-

I asked around so to speak and Cheyenne Autumn’s premiere engagement at the Loew’s Capitol was a traditional roadshow engagement with 2 shows during the week and 3 on the weekend. unfortunately it didn’t have a healthy or long run. still since it was a traditional premiere roadshow engagement I just can’t imagine it not having a souvenir program regardless of the length of said engagement.

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Capitol Theatre on Jun 30, 2014 at 5:19 pm

Hello-

a further question about Cheyenne Autumn. was the engagement of the film which opened Dec. 1964 a traditional 2 shows during the week and 3 on the weekend roadshow engagement?

bigjoe59
bigjoe59 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Jun 27, 2014 at 2:40 pm

to techman 707-

thanks for your reply about roadshow engagements having souvenir programs. the reason I ask is simple. I have approx. 135 souvenir programs in my collection starting with the one for the 1925 silent version of Ben-Hur. most I bought at the theater when I saw the film others at memorabilia shops in Manhattan and L.A..to which with all the memorabilia shops I’ve been too and all the online sites selling such stuff I have never come across souvenir programs for such prominent roadshow engagements as The Diary of Anne Frank(RKO Palace),Cheyenne Autumn (Loew’s Capitol)and Gigi which played the Royal which was normally a legit theater. these are just a few of the prominent roadshow engagements in the 17 year period mentioned for which I have never come across a souvenir program. so I wondered if quite possibly they didn’t have one hence my question.