Late Night Double Feature Picture Show at The Star Theatre

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Tiny JohnnyM

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Star Theatre

Star Theatre

Newmarket, NH

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Taken on: August 27, 2017

Uploaded on: January 17, 2018

Exposure: 1/30 sec, f/2.2, ISO 32

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Late Night Double Feature Picture Show at The Star Theatre

A church was constructed on Main Street in Newmarket, New Hampshire, in 1871. For a variety of reasons, it closed in 1907, and the property went over to commercial use. The church auditorium was converted into the town’s first movie theater, the Scenic Temple. This later became the Star Theatre. The popular movie theatre was sometimes used as a town auditorium. It presented movies into the 1950’s and was demolished in 1966.

In the motion picture; “The Rocky Horror Picture Show”, production designer Brian Thomson decided to use Patricia Quinn’s lipsticked mouth against a black background, lip syncing to Richard O'Brien’s vocal, with the picture inverted. Inspired by the Man Ray painting entitled Lips (1966), the opening number (prologue); “Science Fiction Double Feature”. is sung by these disembodied lips, which freeze in place for the credits.

As depicted in this painting on the marquee, this song title, and subsequently the two featured film titles, are lyrics from this song; “Anne Francis stars in Forbidden Planet” “I knew Leo G. Carroll was over a barrel when Tarantula took to the hills” Therefore, this acrylic piece pays homage not only to the only movie theatre Newmarket ever knew, but also to two classic science fiction films, and a cult classic.

The Star Theatre was an “MGM” theatre, and it is quite probable that “Forbidden Planet” (MGM, 1956) was screened there sometime in 1956. It is probably unlikely that Robbie the Robot was present outside the theatre at the time. It is also probably unlikely that “Tarantula” (Universal, 1955) was ever screened at The Star Theatre. It is not out of the realm of possiibility that anyone suffering from acromegaly was peeking out of the 2nd floor window, and there definitely was a Gulf gas pump next door.

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