Commodore Cinemas

329 Broadway,
Brooklyn, NY 11211

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Showing 1 - 25 of 301 comments

Willburg145 on October 27, 2018 at 8:06 pm

Are the photos of the interior prior to demolition still available on Flickr?

AuroraBorealis on November 11, 2017 at 11:24 pm

It really breaks my heart to read all these pages filled with so much interest and love for the Commodore. I’ve read them all before, but it didn’t really hit me when I was a teen. My grandpa co-owned/ managed the theatre as my mother and uncle have already stated. I was a little girl when it happened and I wish so badly my family would have known about this site. I don’t even want to show my grandpa the comments about saving it because I think it would make him really sad. I do want him to see the comments about the nice memories people had of it though so I’ll make a little collage. I think my favorite memory besides playing in every part of that place was dancing on stage before the theatre opened with my cousins. I don’t remember if music played in between movies, but it did before everyone started coming in. We even failed to realize it opened and we were still dancing on stage. I’m sure everyone thought we were just goofy kids because even an adult got on stage for a second to dance!

robboehm on April 6, 2017 at 12:02 pm

If you go to Save the Commodore!’s Photostream on Flickr there are some depressing photos of the interior (and exterior) before the demolition.

Willburg145 on April 5, 2017 at 6:39 pm

Where on earth might there be photos of the interior?

dandelatorre on August 30, 2016 at 9:15 am

My family rented an apartment in the early 1950’s adjacent to this Commodore theater. The two-story apartment was part of the Synagogue converted into two apartments. Our backyard was a long narrow cemented area laying between the rears of both the Synagogue and Commodore buildings. My sister and I were very little and shared a bedroom on our second floor with only one side window which faced the back of the theater. It only had a shade on it. The lights from the theater would cast shadows of tree limbs from a tree in it’s back property onto our window shade, and when it was windy the shadows of the moving branches were scary to us. Many memories of that home.. the last apartment we lived in before moving out to Long Island and into our first home.

johndereszewski on December 1, 2015 at 4:40 am

The sheer stupidity of this continues.

kidblast1 on November 30, 2015 at 11:41 pm

As of November 30, 2015 it’s still a huge empty lot. If the Chasidim bought the property they ain’t talking! I asked several walking by and who owned 2 stores … no one could or would answer me?

Willburg145 on June 4, 2011 at 10:33 am

I think this theather was closed and torn down because some members of the community did not want to see their precious neighborhood overrun by hippsters. This could have become a great venue for films, concerts, and a community theater. There was so much potential but it would have clashed with certain people.

Bway on May 31, 2011 at 11:12 am

Wow, Great photos of the Commodore! It was nice to see those “urn” things again….I used to pass them every day for a decade on the J/M trains through there on the el. STILL can’t believe that beautiful building was senselessly torn down. What a shame.

johndereszewski on October 5, 2009 at 4:46 pm

Thanks Panzer for capturing an act of absolute folly! In looking at the empty lot that will probably remain vacant for the foreseeable future, the sheer stupidy of it all just shocks anyone’s conscience.

Bway on July 4, 2009 at 7:04 pm

I meant Marcy Ave….

Bway on July 4, 2009 at 7:03 pm

It still sickens me whenever I ride by on the el trains through March Ave station that they tore this theater down….and for what? What a waste.

johndereszewski on July 3, 2009 at 3:05 pm

Passed by the site today. It is still an open lot. Looking through the wall, I saw a mostly weed strewn lot with no sign of any development. Yes, some concrete foundation were installed – many months ago – but absolutely no new development appears to be comimg soon – if ever. The most recent Building Permits lapsed last February. Thr only activity I saw was a place to accumulate broken bike parts – but that is it!

The total stupidy of gutting what could have been an extremely appealing endeavor in marketing the Commodore as a cutting edge movie house just becomes more and more apparent! Stupidy rules!

Bway on April 16, 2009 at 9:44 am

I don’t know what the current owners paid for the theater, but the theater was deliberately attacked with holes punched in the roof to quickly destroy the place so there was no hope it would be saved. Has anything been built in it’s place?

Anyway, here a 1967 photo of the Commodore in it’s happier days:

View link

JDaVi on April 13, 2009 at 4:59 pm


JDaVi on April 13, 2009 at 4:52 pm

Is IT TRUE? THAT THE JEWS BOUGHT THE COMMODORE FOR $1.00? If True Williamsburg,Brooklyn really is the
‘King Of The Jews! jDa'Vi.

Tantive7 on March 16, 2009 at 8:42 am

I wish I could had taken pictures from the inside,I loved the chandelier inside the theater..Wow,I miss that place..

delgado218 on March 1, 2009 at 11:34 pm

HI anniegirl, It’s so nice to read that many people had great memories there. My dad ran the Williamsburg theatre about 2 blocks down the street in 70’s. He became partner of the Commodore in the early 80’s until it closed. I was about 4 years old when he started there. Yes, I remember the soda machine it was red and in the same spot you described. It was there for a couple of years then my dad upgraded the candy stand. he had a new one built in front of the old one. The old stand became a storage the room. He got rid of the soda machine and added more arcade machines. I missed that machine I used to ask my parents for change just to watch the cup come down and fill with soda. It was pretty amazing 2 me lol. The couch in the ladies room was gone in the 80’s probably because the bathroom sizes were cute back to make room for the candy stand or my dads office. i not sure which ladies room was the original one. The size of the balcony’s were also decreased to add a second screen up stairs. So you probably remember one big balcony in the rear. They used the middle section of it to make the second screen. All that was left was 2 small balcony’s one on the left and one one the right with a huge wall in between them. I wish I could have seen it it before all those changes because I could tell it was a beautiful theatre. I used to sit in the balcony and stare at the huge chandelier, all the details on the walls and try to imagine it when it first opened. Its sad how everything old gets torn down instead of bringing it back to its original beauty. If that theatre were in England it would have stood for hundreds of years because they preserve history.I read the whole blog and saw the discussion about the kimball, that organ was behind and above the screen.when you walked on stage right there was a doorway straight ahead that led to a tiny room behind the movie screen. In that room there was a metal ladder bolted to the back wall that you had to climb straight up to a ceiling door through that door was where they kept the Kimball organ. As far as the filming Avril filmed her music video on the outside of the Commodore they couldnt get in to film.They went in to my dads restaurant next door and asked my dad for help getting in but the theatre was already sold.The second filming was the disney movie enchanted. Just some fyi saw a lot of questions about it. :)Thank you for writting if you have any other questions please ask.

michelemarie on March 1, 2009 at 2:14 pm

Dear Dorianne,
When did your dad own the Comodore? I used to go there as a kid between the years 1952-1970. I loved that theater. Every Saturday I was there with friends…I remember the matron with the flashlight telling every kid to be quiet. The ladies room had brown couch’s to sit on and when the J train passed by the place would tremble..I remeber the soda machine, the cup would drop down and the syrup and seltzer would mix. It was right next to the candy counter. And the movies, that played there, great for the neighborhood. I remeber when we used to be able to sit in the balcony. Wow. at night. My Mom, Aunts and Uncle’s would go at night. Now it is just a memory.
But a great memory. Give my regards to your dad for many a great time any kid could have. I lived 70 Penn Street and then on 700 Bedford Ave at Heyward Street then 35 Lynch Street and lastly 258 Marcy Ave at Keap Street. Went to Transfiguration School 1952-1960.anniegirl

delgado218 on March 1, 2009 at 9:19 am

hey greenpoint, i will send my dad your regards. He is ok, bored out of his mind now that he’s retired. I don’t think it will last very long he’s already thinking of starting another business closer to his home. I loved getting my dads chicken next door with some fruit punch then sit in the balcony and watch a movie. i have so many great memories of that place. :)

Greenpoint on February 28, 2009 at 2:12 pm

Happy 43rd Billburg…
I am sneaking up on 35 in a few months…
Next year I will tell people I am going on 26.

Greenpoint on February 28, 2009 at 2:11 pm

Hi Dorianne, How is your dad, I used to call him every week to see what he needed for my orange/ fruit punch machine. The theatre was always a good customer. Please relay these best wishes on behalf of Energy Beverage.

Willburg145 on February 28, 2009 at 1:15 pm

I am 43 years old today.

delgado218 on February 28, 2009 at 8:50 am

hello everyone my name is Dorianne Delgado..Some of you know my dad Angelo Delgado he was part owner of the commodore.. I discovered this blog looking for a photo of the Commodore in its original state circ 1920’s but i can’t find one. I'am happy to see that many people loved that place. It was a second home to me and my family.. If anyone see this and has questions i will be more than happy to help. i have answers to many questions that were posted wish i could have found this sooner.. especially when people were interested in trying to help save it..My dad tried so hard to delay the sell so the money could be raised to buy the other owners out… (sigh) but its to late now it’s been difficult for my dad because he worked there for 20 years and before that he ran the williamsburg theatre also known as the commodore twin.. Hope to hear from someone or myspace url delgado218