Showing 1 - 25 of 53 comments
When I first saw TIC in Boston in 1960, the projectionist dropped a hinged sephia filter in front of the lens when that segment came up and quickly removed at the seqment end. Those segments had been photographed in black @ white in late 1949.
The theatre was first split by ceiling off the balcony for one house, then splitting the downstairs down the middle to create the 3 theatres that exist today in the original building.
The 4th and 5th theatres are cinder block structures built on both sides of the original theatre. This is a nice operation in a good location.
Responding to Dickneeds111 post. I did the original post on this Theatre. < Cineramatopcities > has some photos I was able to get back in 1977. The photo looking at the original booth in the balcony rear shows another 2-port booth that I believe Cinerama added for the intros. The original booth still had the bases and huge Peerlees condenser arcs but no heads. The “newer” booth was stripped clean. I had always assumed that the Cinerama sound head was upstairs in the intro booth.In the years going there I never noticed the Sound Head downstairs location so thanks for the information.
When they converted to x rated they twinned the downstairs, built one long rear booth with 2 projectors in each theatre running 1 hour reels each.
William, thank you for making all the necessary corrections to the initial post. The complex opened in late 1964 with Cinema 1 with a Cinerama curtain but a smaller flat screen behind it.The Cinerama screen was put in about 6 months later. Cinema 2 had a flat “Shadowbox” screen with no curtain or masking. Cinema 3 opened in early Spring 1967 with D-150 and “The Bible”. A seperate building was put up in the parking lot next to Cinema 3 several years later opening as the first automated twin. Eventually every house was split down the middle except Cinema 3 which was split front / back. I was a projectionist there for 21 years.
Does anyone remember when they used a double traveler
curtain here to open the show? This may have been a while back. They were slightly different colors.
The only other theatre I remember a double traveler
was for roadshow presentations at the Saxon Theatre
in Boston. The Loew’s State in Times Sq. after the 1959
70mm install used a vertical draw curtain at the overture end, then a traveler to open on the feature.
Can anyone remember any where else that went to this trouble?
Vincent, in response to your June 19th question, I was in the Theatre
for the first time in the Spring of 1962 for THE LONGEST DAY.
I would guess that nothing at all changed since they put Cinerama in
early 1953 after moving it over from the Broadway.At that time I’m sure they had to take out the side boxes.
It was the old red curtain in front of the still existing proscenium arch and by 1962 they had expanded Baker Booth for the 3 Century 70mm
machines. Able and Charly booths were still there. Other than that I don’t think any other changes were ever done until the massive remodeling of late 1963 for MAD, MAD WORLD.
In response to dave-bronx question on Jan, 21, 2006.
When the State was twinned in 1968, the 3 Norelco 70mm
machines went to the downstairs house. Upstairs #2 house
got the 3 Century 70mm machines from the closing Capitol
Cinerama up the street.
I posted a question a year ago on 2-14-05 on this theatre
about the reason why the upstairs booth faced a little toward
the left wall. It was very weird in the booth with the 3 projectors
having to be mounted about 15 degrees to the right to compensate.
Does anybody have an explaination?
I first knew Henry Cummings where he was a long
time manager at the Bing Theatre in Springfield.
What I meant on Burlington was it was built with
one projectionist/automation from the initial beginning.
You are right about Peabody being their first twin built all at once with 2 separate booths. I suspect there were 2 projectionists on
at once on manual operation for many years.
The same thing was probably true in Framingham
when they added the second house years later.
I believe this was a single when first opened.
I think when it was twinned General Cinema used
it to experiment with their early automation systems
as a test house.
I think General Cinemas first built from the ground up
twin was inside Burlington Mall (which was later quaded)
At the time I was a projectionist at their only
Theatre in Western Mass. at Eastfield Mall in Springfield.
Not really a bad movie. The best part was a very good stereo music track when heard off a 70mm print in a Cinerama Theatre.
I saw it twice at the Colonial Cinerama Theatre in Hartford.
They used the London Symphony Orchestra for the track.
I think the Producers tried too hard to make another Sound Of Music.
Getting back to the question of a curved screen install, I may be wrong but I don’t it ever happened.
I was in here opening week 0f Dec. 1962 for Lawrence of Arabia.It was the bright red curtain and a flat screen (I took and still have a color slide of the opening title off the Very flat screen) my last time in here before it was upstairs/downstairs split was the Gilda Radner concert film. It was the same old dirty red curtain and flat screen.
Any properly 70mm curved screen installation would normally have
a projection booth installed at a near zero projection angle.
Example in NYC the WARNER (downstairs),the Rivoli ( balcony cut ),
the Loews State (balcony cut in the 1959 remodel for Ben Hur ).
The Criterion booth at the rear of the small balcony could have
had a little too slight of an angle without a keystone problem, at least for a Times Sq. quality install.
Can anybody remember anything else?
I was the one that did the initial listing of this Theatre about
two years ago. I found another list of Mass. Theatres I got from a
THS member( Posssibly Barry Goodgin) dated 1949.
It has the OLD SOUTH at 295 Washington.
Is it possible that the same auditorium remained but they kept
changing the entrance location to accomodate the retail stores
directly on the street?
Barry Goodkin of THS sent me a list of Mass. Theatres many years ago.
It was dated 1949.
For Whitinsville it lists:
Prospect Theatre , 19 Prospect St.
Star Theatre, No. Main St. (no number)
Vincent, even though there was no normal stage, you are right that there had to be dressing rooms someplace back there. On the 7th Ave. side sidewalk level, you were probably close to 10 feet up from stage level taking into account the desending auditorium pitch.
When you think about it, the Theatre faced East between Broadway and 7th Ave. and at that point there is not too much distance for a deep auditorium.
The Rivoli never had a stage. Whatever live music they did way back when was done apparently in front of the screen.
When the Theatre was twinned they blew into the 7th Ave. back end of the Theatre about 18 feet to put in some retail gift stores to get some extra rental income. This is why the downstairs house new screen
was moved so far forward.
In the upstairs house they had to build a new projection booth in front of and 8 feet lower than the original booth for the beam to hit the new smaller screen.
The downstairs house after twinning continued using the Balcony cut
booth put in for the 1955 remodel for 70mm.
I believe the third house was separate cinder block
structure built in back with a separate entrance.
The current existing Theatre was twinned upstairs/downstairs
with the original screen end intact, similiar to to Coolidge Corner
and Harvard Sq.
Someone in the NYC area may know the explaination to this. The original projection booth at the balcony top was built facing about 15 degees to the left.I was in the State the first time in 1962, about 3 years after they did the remodel putting the new 70MM booth in the balcony front when I first noticed the original booth at that weird angle.
Around 1970 – after the upstairs was twinned off- they used the original booth for the the upstairs house (#2). I was in the booth
and the 3 Century 70mm machines had to face 15 degees to the right.
Did this have something to do with the land plot or building structure?
I was in the booth in the Summer- the booth had no air conditioning- and both operators (it was still a 2 man operation)were working in their underwear. If my memory is correct, one of the operators was the son of Harry Garfman who I think was the Business Agent of the
When they opened these two theatres, the four Norelco 70mm machines
were moved over from the Saxon and Gary Theatres respectivley.They
may have even moved most of the stereo sound equipment. The Saxon and Gary still ran for several years on 35mm replacement mono.
Charles, these photo’s were on the <cinerama.topcities.com> site.
I was also able to get some good shots of the Cinerama (Colonial)
in Hartford,CT. which are on the same site.
The original 2 theatres, side by side, both had 70mm
Norelco’s. The 3rd house was added a year or two later by
constructing it on top of the 2 existing houses and facing the
opposite direction by sandwiching it in the first parking garage level. The rear of the screen was in back of the Dalton St.
marquee. There was no room in this house for the projection booth
at the rear of the auditorium so it was located in the ceiling about
30 feet back with a 45 degree keystone angle. The projection booth
was literally a cinder block structure near the end of the level 1
parking garage. The projection keystone problem by solved by obtaining special lenses from Germany, flat projection was ok, scope
projection did have a little abberation but most people never looked for it. It reportedly took BEN SACK a little while to convince the
Architects to squezze this house in.
Gerald, The small lobby area is now being converted to the
Thomas Moser Cabinet/Furniture store. The City Of Boston
Construction permit on the front door is listed as 19 Arlington.
Gerald, I was in this Theatre once in the early 60’s but
this is one I can’t remember exactly where it was.
Was it in the rounded, Eastern end of the Hotel that is now
the Park Plaza? I know at sidewalk level at this round corner there was a radio station studio.
I am pretty certain that when Stanley Warner closed this Theatre
they moved all the relativly new Norelco 70mm equipment several
miles to the east to their new WHITE CITY Theatre on route 9
in Shrewsbury which was just torn several years ago.
In the late 70’s I was able to get interiors of this Theatre
by sneaking up to the balcony and-using high speed film-taking
around 5 minute time exposures of the auditorium using reflected light off the screen. The place smelled like a toilet then especially
at the balcony top on the far side of the booth.
This time exposure thing works good if the seat armrests are flat to place a camera for long periods.