Showing 1 - 25 of 156 comments found
When Cinerama departed the Teck theatre standard 35mm and 70mm movies such as West Side Story and Ben-Hur were definitely shown on a flat screen. I was also fortunate enough to get to see genuine Cinerama films before the equipment was removed from the theatre.
During the time that I ran this theatre (mid 70’s to mid 80’s) the Roxy had approximately 680 seats. We had to reduce the seating capacity somewhat when we renovated the auditorium to make room for a much larger screen.
I hadn’t heard about Walter Senior’s demise. Of course I remember him. One of my staff (female) in the art dept. commented on how good looking he was… I always thought he looked like a gangster. When he took over as CEO morale went downhill and the company was never the same again. There was the executive suite and then there were the thousands of others across the country who were responsible for running the theatres – two poles apart.
All of us who worked for the company wondered about these things too. No one in the advertising or art dept. was ever consulted about the new Famous Players logo. We were just told to use it. Apparently the head honchos had friends in an ad agency that were paid way too much for their contribution. Sounds like sour grapes doesn’t it? Well, I admit it… it is.
As a former employee of Famous Players (ran the art dept.) I’m quite happy to see the end of that logo. What began as a happy working environment turned into a nightmare. Each successive CEO turned out to be even less interested, or knowledgeable, about the movie theatre business than the last. The last straw was walking into the Plaza Cinema one afternoon just before the picture began and seeing the beginning of the new era of “showmanship.” The management was instructed not to use the curtains and instead of soft lighting for a bit of atmosphere: the glaring cleaning lights were the only source of illumination. I won’t mention the name of the CEO at the time – don’t wish to be sued. But I certainly have no respect for the man.
I’m in total agreement. Let’s go to the Paramount sounds like fun. Let’s go to the Scotiabank: not so much so.
On the other hand, I know a number of people who hate that long escalator at the Scotiabank. Just goes to show: you can’t please everyone. But I do agree with your comment.
Last I heard they were to have changed the signs for the first of the year… obviously it didn’t happen. How do first time patrons find the entrance? And speaking of signs, if one is not familiar with the building how do you get to the theatre in that confusing complex? And worse yet, there’s an elevator just a few feet away from the boxoffice, but there isn’t a sign informing patrons that they can simply take the elevator directly to the cinema up on the 4th floor?
I checked out this theatre’s new UltraAVX installation in the former ETX cinema. It’s similar to a digital IMAX auditorium with it’s huge screen. I especially like the decor: dark sky blue carpeting throughout with a sprinkling of white stars, nicely designed dark blue sound baffles on the walls with a large white star in the centre and plush rocker seats with reserved seating in addition to the mind-boggling new Dolby Atmos sound system. There are speakers everywhere… even on the ceiling. Great fun! I really have to give Cineplex/Odeon credit for these super upgrades.
I think it was fortunate that Perspecta Sound was short-lived. It had the same limited frequency range as the standard optical track of the time and didn’t reproduce audio in three dimensional stereo. So what was the point?
When I saw Ben-Hur in 70mm projection at the Michael Todd in 1960 the curtains opened horizontally to reveal a very wide flat screen. Meanwhile, Exodus at the Cinestage was shown on a slightly curved standard screen. The Cinerama strip screen was installed a few years later.
This theatre has just been equipped with a Cineplex/Odeon UltraAVX installation. I haven’t seen it yet, but I presume that it’s been installed in what was AMC’s ETX auditorium. I like the AVX upgrades: the seats are extremely comfortable, the presentation is excellent and they’ve even put a bit of thought into the decor which is somewhat unusual in this day and age. I’m reserving a seat this weekend to check it out.
Contrary to popular belief, Kiss Me Kate did get a fairly wide 3-D release. MGM found that in test engagements the 3-D version did more business. As to Radio City, their ultra wide auditorium made it impractical for people seated at the sides to watch in 3-D. This is due to the fact that silver screens, which are required for 3-D viewing, reflect light straight ahead leaving audiences sitting to the sides watching a very dark and unevenly lit image.
What a stunning looking auditorium!
This theatre used to be part of Nat Taylor’s 20th Century Theatres group. Taylor also operated I.F.D. a film distribution company specializing in art house fare and ran Toronto’s two main art houses: the Towne and the International. In the mid 60’s Nat decided he needed an additional outlet for his films and the Midtown became the Capri. But even with a generous budget for an ad campaign it wasn’t a success.
This sure doesn’t look like a movie theatre to me: poor sight-lines, no screen and where are the port holes for the projection booth?
This has to be the smallest movie theatre in the entire world. Or is it?
The facade of this building has been restored as an historical site under its original name: the Allenby. Check out the Roxy site here on Cinema Treasures for more photos of this well known movie theatre when it was the Toronto home of the Rocky Horror Picture Show for many years.
It shouldn’t look like film or video. The idea is to make it look more like life.
Thanks for the positive comment on the photo which I shot on 35mm Anscochrome film. Sure wish we still had a few of those splendid old theatres to go to today. But on a positive note: the big screen digital presentations of late are getting better all the time.
The Carlton recently converted to digital projection… hurray! This gets rid of the following problems: pictures out of frame (microphones in frame), out of focus, poor sound reproduction, scratchy and, or dirty prints. These are some of the reasons I stopped going to this venue. A recent visit with perfect digital projection and sound was a real treat!
Who actually manages (or owns) the place? Who paid for the recent renovations? Have they installed digital projection equipment? I hate to think of what it costs to run this place: heat, taxes, hydro, staff, upkeep, advertising, film or DCP rental, etc. It boggles the mind.
We’ve all heard this one before. I wouldn’t chuck those polaroid glasses just yet.
As someone who ran a repertory movie house for many years and knows full well the perils of running old, battered film prints, I applaud the switch to digital projection. I may no longer be in the business, but as a moviegoer I really enjoy watching a feature film that doesn’t have: changeover cues, stays in focus, isn’t plagued by dust and scratches, doesn’t jump out of frame, the image doesn’t bounce or weave, etc. What’s not to like?
I just heard that AMC will remove all of the Sony 4K projectors throughout the complex when they vacate to make room for the Cineplex takeover. These will more than likely be replaced by Christie machines. I don’t know what will happen with the IMAX auditorium but I doubt that Cineplex would get rid of it.