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In response to Ed Solero’s 4/24 posting regarding the status of the theatre’s interior, I can verify that nothing remains of any interior architectural elements. The interior was sadly gutted right down to the brick walls a few years ago.
I am pleased to report that this theatre’s renovation is well underway. If you have any historical information, records, or just a passing interest in the future success of this theatre, please email me at your earliest convenience –
This was once a great theatre run with pride by the original owners. Originally a 500+ seat single screener with two glass enclosed “cry room” balcony seating areas upstairs on either side of the projection booth. The main auditorium also had a sizeable stage, and two giant brass American Eagles that resided on the side walls. Back in the day, this theatre had the exclusive, showcase county engagement for Star Wars, which they ran for almost one full year, only to be replaced by an exclusive on Close Encounters of the 3rd Kind, which also ran for almost a full year. Those were the days!
Three additional screens were later added on by the owners to make a 4-plex, but without touching the original auditorium. It was only after they sold the Roosevelt that the new owner chopped up the main house, added on the “theatre” in the cafe space, and ran it to the ground. What was once the second largest theatre space (running parallel to the original auditorium) is now considered their main house. The previous comments are on point – this place is now a dump.
The building was located on Old Country Road, right next to Fortunoff, pretty close to what is now the Borders Book Store building. Theatre was free standing, torn down sometime in the mid 1990’s during the redevlopment of that portion of OCR.
“The Kitchen Sink” – as in the biggest, most outrageous ice cream sundae ever…and if you could actually finish it by yourself, you got it for free!
I went past the Westbury yesterday. Workers were gutting out the second story office space at the front of the building. They gave me the following phone number as a building contact if anyone wants to try it…646-529-0977…
I wasn’t there for the shooting, but recall vividly from newspaper/TV accounts that a bunch of teens from Nassau/Queens pretty much opened fire on the crowd, injuring a few folks and killing one.
Another story from back in the day from when I was a teen…I was at the adjacent Green Acres Mall with a friend just killing time in the arcade before going to see Nightmare on Elm Street 4 at the Sunrise Multiplex. We started to play the old USA-Russia hockey game, when an all-out massive fight broke out between rival African-American and Latino gangs and spilled right into the arcade. I remember it clear as day. My friend and I both hid under our video game the whole time, scared as sh*t. After the movie I remember thinking that no Freddy movie seemed as frightening as that one, though I suppose it was brought on by the pre-show action rush at the mall.
I meant to add…no theatre on the North Shore in Nassau Couty would fit the bill…except for the guess you already made, the Cove…
I was in here less than one year ago. Toured both theatres. In one word – unbelieveable! I hate to sound pessimistic, but something on this scale and in a city as run down as Bridgeport…
It definitely was not the Roslyn Theatre. They’ve had a few local bands play over the years on a tiny makeshift stage, and even ran midnight shows from time to time. However, the seats always remained intact downstairs, they never had a liquor license, and by ‘82 I think it had already been twinned. Based on the description you give, no theatre on the North Shore in Nassau County would fit the bill. Could it have been the Calderone in Hempstead, which ran live acts in the 70’s and early 80’s? Or perhaps you were at My Father’s Place on the other end of town in Roslyn?
Screen was originally a single, twinned down the middle. Was designed by the same architect as the theatre I book, the Avon in Stamford, CT. Both opened within a month of one another and closed down right around the same time. Hope to see it saved, however, the somewhat downtrodden strip on which it is located will make it difficult.
I went here for the first time a few years back and saw Gangs Of New York in one of the downstairs theaters. It was like stepping back in time with all the old RKO Century branding remaining inside and out. Exactly the way I remember the Roosevelt Field Theater (as a triplex and before going over to Loews/Sony) circa the early – mid 1980’s.
2 points of clarification re. the previous posts…
The statute of limitations on the Paramount Decrees expired many years ago, thereby rendering them null and void. Hence the 1989 Sony/Columbia/Tri-Star/Loews merger and subsequent vertically integrated companies that exist in the film biz.
N/A wasn’t folded into Viacom because it is technically a separte entity that is privately owned by the Redstone family. It is through N/A that Redstone stands as the majority shareholder of Viacom with approximately 60% ownership.
The Meadowbrook went from a quad to a 6-plex by splitting the two largest auditoriums down the middle. Following the conversion, the former balcony space in the original main theatre was sealed off and never used again.
Last time I was in New Paltz the Academy was a restaurant/bar.
Located in the sleepy town of Red Hook, the original Lyceum Theatre is now called the Lyceum Annex. The original auditorium space is now an antique store. There’s an addition to the building in which the current auditorium resides. Just outside of town is also the Lyceum 6-screen theatre.
Re. CConnolly’s 12/27 comment – if you head west on Northern Blvd. past the Miracle Mile, the next theatre you would come across would be the long-closed Little Neck. It fits the description aside from the entrance, which was on Northern. I don’t recall there being any other theatre ever on this road between the Cinema Manhasset and the Little Neck.
I was in here only a few months back and much remains intact. The main floor seats have been removed and the floor totally flattened with a new concrete finish, however all else remains in the auditorium in a very decayed state. The balcony seats were still there as well as some detail work on the walls/ceiling. Typical RKO house that was probably not very ornate even in its day.
I have been inside the Loews Paradise quite recently and am pleased to report that it looks amazing. One really cannot tell that the theater had been quadded at one time.
I was working for the Anthology Film Archives during the summer that this theater closed. During the final showings of Godard’s Forever Motzart, folks from the Anthology were sent in to remove all the seats and take them for reuse. If you see a flick in the larger theater at the Anthology, you’ll be sitting in the Angelika 57’s seats…
It’s now a 5-plex. The original main auditorium is still largely intact, with some small theatres having been carved out of one side section of seats. The lobby has some really cheesy maritime displays and wood paneling that give the place a funny, dated 1970’s feel. I’ve been told this theatre was designed exactly like either side of the Hicksville North/South Twin, later known as the Hicksville Mid-Plaza Cinema 6. I’ve been to both, but only have vague memories of the latter, and as a 6 screener at that.
The Screening Room closed in the last 2 years or so. What he meant to say was that the Screening Room closed in 2003 or 2004, following 9/11…
That’s a shot of the Mineola Theater. I think it was torn down in the 70’s. If you go to the Hofstra archives they might still have some copies of the book for sale. It has a great deal of information and photos on the entire chain. Definitely worth the purchase.