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Very nice gesture for Classic Cinemas to offer free popcorn.
So what will the big boys (AMC, Regal, Cinemark) do to celebrate Nat'l Popcorn Month? Probably sell stale popcorn at $5.00 a sack!
Hey Tick from March 2007 above……
Do you still have the Majestic Grand Drape?
Look at this web site to see what it looked liked when the Majestic opened. http://www.cinemahouston.info/index.htm
More demo photos here
I worked for Interstate back in the 50’s and as I recall it’s Adults, children and passes. Also this breakdown helped with the concession counter figures for the week. Certain items sold better with a high children’s count.
Bill: Thanks for the memories….. I too am a native Houstonian and still have many fond memories of the Interstate Theatres in Houston.
I worked as an usher during the mid-50’s at the Eastwood (a twin building of the Tower) and the Santa Rosa.
I get very sad sometimes reading Cinema Treasures when I see some cities making a major effort to ‘save’ some of their historical theatre buildings. It still pains me to know that Houston distroyed the first atmospharic theatre build in the U.S. by John Eberson (Majestic Theatre that you speak of in your artile).
Now it looks like the River Oaks is next in line for demolition, and possible the Alabama.
Theatre buffs and Houstonian’s can view a lot of great picture on the web by going to
This is a site that contains the complete library files from the old Bob Baily Studios here in Houston. The site has many great pictures of the theatre history of Houston.
Once on the site, scroll down to BOX 3N365 and more, then you can click on the various photos – they are all marked and names.
I even found some early photos of the Eastwood, where I work during the mid-50’s.
Because the real estate developers control Houston, we citizens must sit by and see our history destroyed in the name of progress.
The River Oaks Shopping center is truly a classic Art Deco center. It has been well maintained over the years and offers lots of shopping and restaurants, not to mention the venorable River Oaks Theatre.
If Weingarten’s Realty were smart, they would figure out how to ‘incorporate’ the theatre into it’s expansion project.
Business feeds off of business…….. a good example… in the Woodlands they built Market Street a few blocks away from the Woodlands Mall. Market Steet was designed and built to look like a small town business district… with a central park, restaurants, shops, specialty stores, AND the Market Stree Theatre (Cinemark).
And yest there are book stores, and a real home town feel to the entire project. It’s very sucessful and they plan to expand the area.
Why can’t Weingarten’s take a real hard look at the River Oakes Center and truly upgrade it to something special while saving the Art Deco feeling of the entire project.
I digress…….. I guess their minds are already make up and the wrecking crews standing in the wings to start tearing down another part of Houston’s past. Shame on Houston!!!!!
Take a look at this web site:
This company has a new twist on movie presentations.
They are taking on theaters that have been closed due to competitiion from the Mega-Plex locations.
The one at Houston – Deerbrook Commons was a GCM theatre that closed then AMC opened a 24 screen theatre right across the street in the Deerbrook shopping mall!
I must agree with Ennis' comments above. How could Houston let all three of its movie palaces be demolished. Houston is now spending millions in an attempt to bring back downtown Houston to a major attraction, i.e. new baseball park, new, basketball arena, expanded convention facilities, lots of new restaurants, jazz clubs, new hotels, etc. Not to mention the new light rail runing down Main St.
It would be great to still have the Majestic, the Metropolitan and Loew’s State to add to this mix. Well I digress….
…. but I still have many fond memories of attending these venues and standing in line waiting to enter these Grand Palaces!
I only wished that Houston had such a proposition back in the late 70’s… maybe we would have been successful in saving our wonderful movie palaces… I still find it unbieval that we tore down the Majestic Theater… John Eberson’s first Atmospheric Theater!
I hope the citizens of San Francisco step forward to save their existing movie houses!
My favorite is the Fox Westwood Village.
I first visited there in 1949 while on a visit to see my Aunt and Uncle. I had never visited a theater with an ‘L’ shape layout. I was intrigued. Furthermore the presentation was First Rate! This was my first experience with a waterfall curtain – the lights lowered, the curtain raised up, then the ‘second’ curtain drew back from side to side and the feature began. This was very exciting to a 9 yr old and I still remember the experience as if it happened yesterday!
With all of the distruction taking place around the country, it’s nice to see the old Fox Westood Village still going strong and looking as good a ever. (My last visit there was in 2002)
Hats off to Larry Grossman, I wish you much success with your project!
I worked as an usher at the Eastwood during the middle 50’s and Ross Vallone was the manager at that time. He then moved on to the Tower, then to the Majestic, then to the Twin-ABC theater out on Westheimer (after ABC bought out Interstate Theaters).
The Kirby was still going strong in the mid 1950’s and was the first 3D house in Houston showing “Bhawana Junction” – a lousy movie if I do say so.
The auditorium was located in the rear section of the Kirby Bldg. and was reached from a long, narrow entrance from Main Street.
Neiman Marcus was in the adjacent building next to the Kirby.
If memory serves me, it was Ross Vallone, the manager of the Tower that came up with the idea of the ‘upside down’ curtain. Mr. Vallone gave me my first job as an usher – when he managed the Eastwood Theater. (He and my dad went to High School together.)
The Eastwood and the Tower were both built about the same time around 1937. Mr. Vallone said that the two buildings were identical in layout and size, except for the exterior and interior decor.
During those days both theaters served a large movie going neighborhood – the Eastwood out in the ‘East End’ on Leeland @ Telephone Rd. and the Tower in the ‘West End’ on Westheimer @ Waught Drive. The Eastwood is long gone having made way for a new roadway.
As I still remember, Interstate Circuit just about owned Houston having built a number of ‘first class’ neighborhood theaters up to the early ‘50’s not to mention the River Oaks – still open; the Yale, Alameda, Village, Alabama, Santa Rosa, Fulton, Garden Oaks, Wayside, Yale to name a few.
Stan Gilmore – Houston