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I don’t believe very few went to the Capitol in New York City before or while the theatre came up with a new gimic. While showing Cinerema, they, for a short time came up with smellavision. They actually put pipes under the seats and I remember in one scene some people were walking on the grass and the smell of grass came out of the pipes. They had numerous smells all thru the movie, but it never caught on.
The Marcy was between the Commodore and The Williamsburg on the other side of the street. I only went to it once, in the early 1950’s because it was renovated afterwards and changed to a spanish format. The theatre was designed like a “V” shape with the front having only about 4 seats with a small screen. I went back in the late 1980’s and it was a shoe store.
I remember the Williamsburg. It was right under the Marcy Avenue B.M.T. subway station. In 1950, it mainly showed 2nd or 3rd rate movies. For about 3 hours, it showed many westerns and 3 stooges movies. I don’t remember if it was air conditioned, but you can hear the elevated trains that was right outside.
In 1949, I was 7 years old. My friends and I had a choice of 3 theatres that was within walking distance. One was the Commodore. It was smaller than the Republic theatre but it was air conditioned and always showed 2 full features, lasting almost 4 hours, including many cartoons and all the news of the week. Not many families had television. If they did, it was a 9 inch black and white with programming starting at 5:00p.m. The theatre seating had 3 sections. The 2 side sections started with one seat in the front with 2 seats behind it and so on, till it got to about 25 seats in the last row. We favored this theatre because it had air conditioning and were sad leave to go to our all non-air conditioned apartments. If that theatre was on the other side of the street, it have to be torn down to make way for the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway. The only bad thing was you can hear the elevated trains pass right outside.
Posted by stanofdallastexas Dec. 19th 2004
I remember it when I was 7 years old in 1949. On Saturday morning at 9:00 a.m. the doors open allowing the half block long of kids in to see one hour long movie plus 15 or 20 cartoons and finally had some of the kids go on stage to play a game of musical chairs for prizes. The whole thing took about 4 hours, all for a .26 cent admission. If you had a birthday that week, you just walked into the managers office with any proof and received a gift. The stage was huge. They put in cinamascope in 1954 with 4 equally spaced speakers behind the screen and we marveled at hearing a actor going from left to right with the speakers following. Both sides of the stage had a large frame, probably where a person changed the card when they had vaudeville. It had 3 balconeys but the top was always closed because it’s heyday had passed. The only bad thing is, it never had air conditioning, just many large fans and we tried to sit in an area to catch the breeze.
Posted by Stan of Dallas Texas on Dec 19, 2004