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October 1939 Fleetwood Auditorium Schedule currently for sale on Ebay:
At the time the Auditorium Theatre was built in 1928, Fleetwood Pennsylvania was the world renown home of the Fleetwood Metal Body Works which made automobile bodies for Cadillac – which is where the Cadillac Fleetwood designation comes from.
The Auditorium Theatre in the fire company builing was used for movies. The last theatre operator was Paul Angstadt – who still operates the Strand Theatre in Kutztown PA as of today.
Paul Anststadt’s operation of the Fleetwood Theatre was his first theatre venture. Paul later became the manager of the Fox Theatre in Reading PA and later still the mayor of the City of Reading PA. In between Paul was partners with Richard Wolfe (of Roxy Theatre Northampton fame) in Angstadt and Wolfe Theatres.
Let’s see if I got this straight. Two separate premium 14 screen complexes located within three miles of one another both opening about the same time.
I am sure that having 15 screens including a 420 seat IMAX just nine miles up the road in Lititz PA does not help.
Another article – this time from dose.com:
(Wish I knew how to hotlink on this site)
The new screen sure shrunk in size.
The old screen is already down.
Sorry Marc. My bad. Memory fades as you get older.
NOLD was released on October 1, 1968 and not 1969 so there may have been playdates in summer of 1969. I saw it around Halloween (or shortly thereafter) in Reading PA in 1968 and not 1969.
I know NOLD sometime either in 1969 or 1970 on the bottom half of a double bill with Tod Browning’s Freaks. Then still later around 1972 (I think) as the bottom half of a double bill with ‘Slaves’ which was also released by Walter Reade’s Continential Films.
Mark C – you wont find any advertisements for Night of the Living Dead from the summer of 1969. NOLD was not released to theatres until October 1, 1969 with the premiere held in Pittsburg PA area where it was filmed.
The initial release of NOLD was very spotty due to its being handled by the Walter Reade Organizations’s Continental Films who really had no idea what they had on their hands nor what to do with it. Because I knew some people involved with the audio production on the film I went out of my way to see NOLD as soon as I could.
I first saw NOLD about two weeks before Halloween in October 1969 at the Embassy Theatre in downtown Reading PA on the bottom half of a double bill with ‘The Fiendish Ghouls’. Fiendish Ghouls was a re-cut and retitled version of the 1960 British film about grave robbers Burk and Hare called ‘Flesh and the Fiends’ and starred Peter Cushing.
Link to opening day article:
Originally built as a single screen showplace by Schwartz Theaters of Dover Delaware in either the late 1960’s or the very early 1970’s. Later then carved up into three screens. I remember that when American Graffiti came out in the fall of 1973 it played at the Cinema Center for a very long time.
According to Rent Track (nightly film gross reporting site for commercial theatres) the West Shore has been listed as “Closed” since February 2015. From that time forward the West Shore appears to have been running DVDs from Redbox. Wonder if they paid the film companies for use of those DVDs.
This version of the Shillington Theatre was a nice second run neighborhood theatre for many years. However it was not until the late 1960’s that the
Shillington Theatre was able to run movies on Sundays due to the local municipality refusing to repeal and continuing to enforce Pennsylvania’s antiquated “blue laws” which forbade entertainment (and bars) being open on Sundays unless the local muncipality voted otherwise.
Around 1968 the Shillington theatre was switched to first run for a short time after most of the aging downtown Reading first run theatres were either closed or burned to the ground (urban renweal at its finest) Once the suburban mall theatres aroung Reading opened the Shillington reverted untimately reverted to second run.
Sometime in the 1970’s the Shillington was twinned with a wall up the middle.
In the late 1970’s through its closing in the late 1980’s the Shillington became a quasi- art house showing more popular art house product. If I recall “The Gods Must Be Crazy” played one screen of the Shillington for at least 6 months to the point where the print became almost destroyed and missing the last few minutes (but they continued to play it anyway).
The woman who was convicted in Jan 1973 of setting the fire that destroyed the vacant Strand Theatre in August 1972 killing two people has been granted a new trial on the basis of scientific advances in the detection of fire origins.
Note there is picture of the Strand as Photo #2 of the array in the attached article.
The Berwick Theatre is scheduled to be featured on an upcoming episode of the new Fox Business Network show “Strange Inheritances”. The episode is currently scheduled for Monday March 16, 2015 at 9:00PM ET.
Not exactly sure why they consider inheriting a movie theatre to be strange.
This was known for years as the Mt. Penn Drive In.
In 1968 the assistant manager was Richard Wolfe who runs the Cinema Treasures favorite Roxy Theatre in Northampton PA. I believe that Wolfe got some sort of recognition for his cutout Drive IN Marquee design for the Mt Penn Drive In for the movie “Where Were You When the Lights Went Out” with Doris Day.
I suspect the closing of the Penn Theatre had more to do with market manipulation than the cost of renovating for wide screen.
The deed to the Penn Theatre when it was sold specifically prohibits it from ever being used as movie theatre in the future. That sort of deed restriction was more common than one would imagine.
Mark this one closed.
Did not want to make the switch to digital.
The last operator of the Skyview was Angstadt & Wolfe Theatres. (That Angstadt is former Reading Mayor Paul Angstadt who still operates the Strand in Kutztown PA and that Wolfe is Richard Wolfe who still operates the Cinema Treasturs Favorite Roxy Theatre in Northampton PA) I belive the Skyview closed in the late 70’s or very early 80’s.
The comment about the twin in 1978 came from me in a post several years ago. For some unknown reason that post along with several others that I made along way several years ago seem to have gotten deleated when this website went through various machinations.
If I recall correctly the theatre was twinned sometime around in either 1977 or early 1978. It took the landlord a while to find out about the twinning but then the Landlord decided to take action with the opening of Superman. I believe that Superman was playing on both screens.
The landlord literally padlocked the front doors with large chains and padlocks. I know this for a fact because I represented the theatre owner in the court case. The county court found for the theatre owner since the lease did not forbid twinning of the theatre so long as the premises were returned to its original state on termnination of the lease. Needless to say on the settlment of the suit the theatre owner got a sweethart rental adjustment due to the landlord’s actions.
With the retirement of long time manager and Classic Film Series supporter Diane Paul last year, the Hershey Theatre is no longer screening films.
The Classic Film Series was only once a month as a fill in on those weekends when other events not scheduled and the usage and partronage was not enough to warrant the investment in a digital projector.
Actually it did not close in 1989. It was carved up in to 4 screens (each side of the twin was front/back) where it continued as discount house until about 5 or 6 years ago.
I believe that Theatre 5 is Eric in Harrisburg PA. The different seats at the rear of the auditorium were the deluxe ‘rocking chair’ section. Opened in April 1963 with Lawrence of Arabia the Harrisburg Eric was built for 70MM reserved seat operations.
Later twinned in 1978 (called Eric I and II) and re-opened with Superman with Christopher Reeve. Whereupon the landlord padlocked the theatre claiming he was entitled to twice the rent since it had been twinned. Sameric went to court and needless to say the Landlord lost that lawsuit.
Richard Wolfe is correct that Theatre 3 is Eric in Reading PA. Opened in July 1970 with “Beneath The Planet of the Apes” Bob Salto was the manager.
FYI – the Eric in Allentown had 70MM capability as well.
Built in 1947.
Last Movie shown was ET – The Extra Terrestrial in 1984.