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A 1984 article with some inaccuracies.
It turns out the United Artists was still in operation as of February, 1988. Here’s a newspaper ad from February 26, 1988. Cineplex Odeon pulled out of there , I believe, in late 1987 and Henry Plitt took it back briefly, if I’m not mistaken.
The Water Tower 1-4 closed in May, 2000. The Water Tower 5-7 closed in November, 2000. Village Entertainment re-opened the 5-7 theatres in August, 2002. Closed one year later.
I wanted to correct something in the “previous operator” section of this overview. Cineplex Odeon never operated the Webster Place Theatres. In order, since 1988: M&R Amusement Companies; M&R Loews; Loews; Sony; Loews Cineplex; AMC Loews; Kerasotes; Regal.
Webster Place Theatres now have recliner seats. See photo in photo section.
I did a little newspaper research. The Capitol Theatre closed in 1974.
Kenneth Kwilinski; Do you know if this theatre projects the silent films in 16mm or digital projection? I went to this theatre in 1976 and I’m quite certain it was 16mm back then. I have a feeling it’s digital today. Do you know how silent movies are projected in this little theatre?
Main auditorium: 2 Century JJs (35mm/70mm). NEC digital projector. 16mm Eastman projector. Small auditorium (Theatre 2): Barco digital projector. Two 35mm projectors recently installed. I don’t know what kind; I will try to find that out and post info later.
Bravo!!! One thing I noticed; you mention the small theatre was renamed the Fine Arts in 1908 and then you mention that the small theatre was renamed the Fine Arts in 1912. Is this an error in naming of the smaller theater?
We’re not not “bitching” about bad writing; we’re mentioning the fact that the description has way too many historical inaccuracies. For an excellent piece of writing on the history of the Fine Arts Theatres, and other Downtown Chicago movie houses, pick up a copy of “Downtown Chicago’s Historic Movie Theatres”, by Konrad Schiecke. I couldn’t have written it better myself.
storefrontcinema: Let me know where I can send my resume.
KNOCK ON ANY DOOR is abosolutely NOT Humphrey Bogart’s last movie. This photo was taken in 1949. Bogie’s last movie was THE HARDER THEY FALL (1956).
I was THEEEE last usher to work there in 1981. The last movie was ATLANTIC CITY. The very last shot was a building being torn down. That’s exactly what happened a couple of days later.
The Adelphi did not close in the 1980s. It closed around 2002 and got torn down in 2006.
Yes; the Art has digital.
David; I “blue”-highlight the link. Copy it. Go to my e-mail. Press “Compose”. Paste link to my e-mail in the area in which I type up a letter. Send pasted link to myself. Click on link.
I worked at the M&R Fine Arts Theatre 30 years ago. I wish somebody would re-open these 2 historic late 19th Century theatres.
Broan; I’m glad you got it right. The author of this page has so much info incorrect.
The M&R Willow Creek Theatres was indeed open much later than 1980. I saw TENDER MERCIES there in 1983.
I think there might be a little confusion here. I really don’t believe gays ventured up to the West Side to spend the night at this legendary schlock house. I once heard from an old veteran theatre owner that the Parkway Theatre, at Clark and Diversey, was a gathering spot for gays. The Parkway was a schlock house for many years up unil 1979 when Landmark Theatres took it over and began a revival program there. I believe that would be more credible since there’s a higher gay prescence around the Parkway Theatre area. I think JAYJay got these two schlock houses mixed up, but I could be wrong.
Nick; they usually indicate on their website wheter a film will be shown in 35mm or DCP digital.
Okay; I went to the microfilm room at the Harold Washington Library in Chicago earlier today and it is confirmed: the M&R Webster Place Theatres opened on Wednesday, July 20, 1988. It opened with DIE HARD, MIDNIGHT RUN and BAMBI; each movie showing on 2 screens. On Friday, July 22, the theatre opened 3 other movies including CADDYSHACK II, BIG TOP PEE WEE and THE DECLINE OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION: THE METAL YEARS. This Saturday, July 20, will be the 25th Anniversary of the opening of this theatre complex. 3 more screens were added in 1998.
Today (June 4) marks the 35th Anniversary of the fire that broke out in the lobby area of the balcony. So ironic that a fire would break out nearly 75 years after the Iroquois Theatre disaster happened at the same location.