Harem Theatre

249 W. 42nd Street,
New York, NY 10036

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Showing 1 - 25 of 28 comments

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on December 28, 2009 at 5:26 pm

Good stuff, formerprojectionist.

formerprojectionist on December 28, 2009 at 1:41 pm

Ok, here’s some live footage of the Harem and some of the other theaters on 42nd St that my friend and I shot back in September 1980. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qbRVzD71Cno this is part of a longer film, my friend did the music. By the way, my partner and I are currently doing a documentary on the Deuce, and we are very, very interested in interviewing anyone who worked on that street, in particular projectionist, but really anyone who was there in the golden days. We’ve already interviewed Jamie Gillis (male porn star who did live sex shows on the deuce), Joel M. Reed (who directed Bloodsucking Freaks aka Incredible Torture Show) and in January we are interviewing Carter Stevens (Adult Film director) Contact me if you have a story to tell.

AnnetteHeinz on November 10, 2009 at 8:06 am

Hello fellas. Thanks for putting together these memories. Wish some more of the girls woul find their way here. Love to all, Annette

kencmcintyre on June 17, 2009 at 9:39 am

Here is a June 1971 photo from the NY Daily News:

DavidZornig on May 20, 2009 at 4:58 am

I am not sure how appetizing “Flame Steaks” would have been, wedged between two XXX buildings. It looks like it even has it’s own mini-marquee.
Not to mention the next door Grocery, Candy, Cold Beer & Cigarettes.
Seems like every hedonistic base was covered, in those four stores.

kencmcintyre on May 19, 2009 at 10:38 pm

This was another Harem in the early seventies. Address was 723 Eighth Avenue.

boboberg on November 25, 2008 at 2:50 pm

Hey thanks for the 1996 pic, it was a bit of a chore to copy it but I got it. Mark Montgomery

revblake on June 15, 2008 at 11:59 pm

Matt Weber Rules….

boboberg on May 25, 2008 at 3:58 am

Thank You for the EXCELLENT pics of the Harem Theater. During the summer of 1984 I was homeless in Manhattan and I used to pay $5.00 in the afternoon at the Harem to get in and I would stay all night until they kicked us out at 6:00 am. I have fond memories of the place and I miss the old Times Square area.
Mark Montgomery .com

kencmcintyre on April 7, 2008 at 2:06 pm

Not likely. It does takes nerve to advertise that kind of film on your marquee. You’d think PETA would be picketing on a round-the-clock basis.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on December 19, 2007 at 9:41 am

From the waist up, maybe. But everything below the waist — kaput!

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on December 19, 2007 at 6:53 am

Assuming the lamp post was not itself relocated… that would place the Yankees Store more or less on the original site of the Harem. Steroids and porn make for a potent combination.

woody on December 19, 2007 at 6:21 am

rescanned photo at better resolution – shot of the north side of 42nd st in 1996 with all the theatres closed and painted bright colours, the harem still with its marquee
same shot in 2007 with the Regal Ewalk in its place

although if you use the lamp post on the pavement as a guide, the main front of the Regal is to the left of the original site of the Harem

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on September 6, 2007 at 1:24 pm

Here’s a vidcap from a 1990 clip I found on YouTube.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on August 1, 2007 at 12:27 pm

Bloop, you always make me smile.

The AMC Empire has a touch of the old Deuce — their revolving sign that says “25” looks like an old peep show “25 cents” sign.

Bloop on August 1, 2007 at 11:21 am

I’m with you on that. Disney should erect an “adult” replica/ retro theme park, with a strip of vintage Grind Houses! That would be so cool!

Bloop on June 6, 2007 at 8:09 pm


Ed Solero
Ed Solero on October 3, 2006 at 10:53 am

You know I’m in your camp on that point, Al…

Here’s another shot from flickr.com that looks down the north side of the block from the 7th Avenue side, circa October 1970. The Harem isn’t really featured here, but if you look way down between the Modell’s and the Flame Steaks signage, you’ll see the bright Harem marquee with its black border at a time when it must have been the newest kid on the block.

Lost Memory pointed out this flickr account to me and it’s well worth scrolling through (click on images to the right of this shot) if you’re interested in other images of the Duece and Times Square in general from that time.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on October 3, 2006 at 10:45 am

Good heavens! Artistic (hmm) murals and FRISKY HORNY KINKY SLU… just across the street? Maybe someone could recreate a replica of this street on 41st street for the tourist trade.

Obviously it is not just me, but wasn’t this squalor oddly beautiful?

kencmcintyre on October 3, 2006 at 10:04 am

Those were the days, weren’t they?

RobertR on October 3, 2006 at 6:47 am

I always wondered if they cleaned at all in these 24 hour places?

woody on October 3, 2006 at 6:41 am

and here in the mid 90's
View link

woody on October 3, 2006 at 6:39 am

a mid 80’s shot showing the harem/deuce in all its sleazy glory, so different to the miserable strip of theme bars its become today