Alabama Theatre

2922 S. Shepherd Drive,
Houston, TX 77098

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The Enemy Below - 1957

The Alabama Theatre opened on November 2, 1939 with the feature “Man About Town” starring Jack Benny and Dorothy Lamour. After the Alabama Theatre closed it became a bookstore. In this use it was meticulously maintained, and resembled a theatre inside, though one with bookshelves and no seats. The screen was still present.

The bookstore closed on September 15, 2009, relocating to another unit in the mall. Preservationists are worried that the beloved Alabama Theatre is at risk of demolition. In 2012, it was operating as a Trader Joe’s.

Contributed by Mina

Recent comments (view all 72 comments)

kgtband on May 30, 2011 at 2:58 pm

Weingarten Realty doesn’t seem to worry too much about PR. They depend on people having short memories. Fortunately the Alabama is still standing. I think it has more to do with the bad economy than anything positive happening.

Stan_Gilmore on September 10, 2011 at 2:06 pm

Here is an interior shot of the Alamaba Theatre

_1WilliamMacdonald on October 19, 2011 at 12:44 pm

Stan. That link didnt work. You are probably right that is not the interior of the Alabama.

The Alabama ran some of the big 70mm road shows. Sound of Music ran for over a year. Lawrence of Arabia played there. It was magnificant. The Tower was the first 70mm house. Mike Todd was there for the opening of Oklahoma. He made them take out the pop corn machine to add some dignity to the occasion. They replaced it when he left. There was a push to equip theaters with 70mm. The Delmon, Village, The Uptown, and some others made the expensive switch.

rogerscorpion on December 12, 2011 at 3:27 am

westawesta, don’t let your guard down. Fight as hard as you can. Weingarten’s only care about what hits their pocketbook. There’s been mention of Trader Joe’s moving into the Alabama. Most recently, though, the report is that murals have been removed & the floor filled in with sand & no mention of Trader Joe’s whatsoever.

HowardBHaas on February 22, 2012 at 11:49 am

Cement going into floor t level it for Trader Joes,

HowardBHaas on February 22, 2012 at 11:57 am

Proscenium arch & murals destroyed!

JMoreland on July 28, 2012 at 1:37 pm

Remember seeing “The Poseidon Adventure” here, among other films. Great theater.

Homeboy on September 2, 2012 at 8:53 am

According to The September 2012 issue of Signs of the Times, the Alabama Theater tower sign is being restored by Coast Graphics and Signs of Stafford, Texas.

Theaterbug on October 21, 2012 at 11:57 am

Alabama Theater is now a Trader Joe’s grocery store. The facade and marquee are still in place, but there is almost nothing left of the theater decoration inside.

This link has several photos of the building:

ejones880 on July 16, 2013 at 5:32 pm

What year did the Alabama Theather close and stop showing movies?

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