Fort Jay Theatre
Owasco Road at Division Road,
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Located on Governors Island, Fort Jay is a former US military base of the US Army and Coast Guard. Built in 1939, the Fort Jay Theatre was constructed under the supervision of the Army Motion Picture Services. Seating in the Art Moderne style auditorium was provided on a stadium plan, with a raised section at the rear, but no overhanging balcony. In 1941, the Fort Jay Theatre is listed as under the control of the Eastern District Office of the U.S. Army Motion Picture Service, who were based at 904 RKO Building, Rockefeller Center, NY., and in 1943, this office was booking 81 army theatres in the Eastern District.
The program at the Fort Jay Theatre was live theater and first run movies. Irving Berlin’s "This is Army" was inspired by a show that the composer saw in 1942 at the theatre. In its last years, families living on the island could enjoy double features for two dollars. "Lost in Time 2" was the last movie shown, when the Coast Guard mothballed the theatre in 1996, when the military base closed.
The National Park Service has taken over. On Open House Weekend in 2009, the public was able to visit to see a film, about 20 minutes of the horror genre, as part of a larger art installation on the former military base.
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