Lunt-Fontanne Theatre

205 West 46th Street,
New York, NY 10036

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Opened on January 10, 1910 as the Globe Theatre for producer and theater manager Charles Dillingham, this 1,475-seat theater was designed in Neo-Renaissance style by the firm of Carrere & Hastings. It had two entrances, a narrow one at 1555 Broadway, the other at 203-217 W. 46th Street.

It originally was a venue for legitimate theater, until closing in 1931.

It served as a movie house from 1935 until 1957.

Acquired by City Playhouses, Inc. in 1957, it was renovated and renamed the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, after the famed husband-and-wife stage actors, returning to its pre-1935 use. At the same time, the main entrance was moved from Broadway to the former side entrance on W. 46th Street.

The theater became part of the Nederlander Organization in 1973. Marlene Dietrich, Peggy Lee and Carol Channing have all appeared on the Lunt-Fontanne’s stage.

The theater received an extensive restoration from 1997-99, which returned it to its original appearance, reopening with Disney’s stage version of “Beauty and the Beast”.

Contributed by Bryan Kreffft

Recent comments (view all 87 comments)

Tinseltoes on March 2, 2011 at 5:53 pm

In rememberance of Jane Russell, it should be noted that her first movie to be shown in New York City was Hunt Stromberg/UA’s “Young Widow,” a B&W melodrama co-starring Louis Hayward that opened at Brandt’s Globe Theatre on July 27th, 1946. Russell’s notorious debut film, “The Outlaw,” made in 1941-42, was long delayed by censorship problems, and didn’t reach New York until September 11th, 1947, at the Broadway Theatre. Amazingly, both theatres still exist as “legit” playhouses, while Jane Russell will live on in her films and recordings.

Tinseltoes on May 14, 2012 at 3:30 pm

This photo with “Hoodlum Empire” on the Globe’s marquee was incorrectly posted at the listing for the New York Theatre: photobucket

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on May 15, 2012 at 9:31 pm

I like that you can see a little bit of Horn & Hardart there on the right.

Tinseltoes on June 20, 2012 at 4:48 pm

Here’s Brandt’s Globe featured in a 1951 trade ad for “The Desert Fox”: boxofficemagazine

Tinseltoes on June 28, 2012 at 3:43 pm

“Tarzan’s Desert Mystery” broke all boxoffice records for an opening day at Brandt’s Globe in late December, 1943: boxofficemagazine

Tinseltoes on July 6, 2012 at 9:09 pm

The Globe was spotlighted in this 1950 trade ad for a British import that probably promised more than it delivered: boxoffice

Tinseltoes on September 18, 2012 at 5:10 pm

Pictured in this two-page trade ad for the 1942 reissue of a Chaplin classic: Boxoffice

AlAlvarez on September 18, 2012 at 5:32 pm

I was just reading a 1989 NYT article about the Nederlander organization looking for a movie multiplex operator to split it up because the theatre was too narrow and therefore awkward for live musical theatre. Here we are twenty three years later.

AlAlvarez on October 26, 2012 at 1:47 pm

A February 1, 1998 NYT article on this theatre mentions that it opened with a feature unique to Broadway history. As a tribute to its namesake, the open-air Shakespeare Globe in London, this Globe had a sliding roof that could open up to the sky on hot weather days. They speculate that soot and litter may have limited the use as it was a problem for other nearby roof top operations.

The article also mentions that the theatre had “seats for fat men”.

Tinseltoes on June 3, 2013 at 4:35 pm

Elia Kazan’s B&W “A Face in the Crowd” was the final movie to be shown at the Globe Theatre, opening on May 28th, 1957 and ending on July 7th of that year. The Globe had already been sold for conversion to “legit,” but no new name had yet been chosen.

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