El Dorado Theatre

5909 E. Broadway Boulevard,
Tucson, AZ 85711

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dallasmovietheaters on July 2, 2015 at 7:30 am

Ciné el Dorado opened March 30, 1967 and it was the place to see the roadshow re-released of “Gone with the Wind” in 70mm which was the theater’s first engagement on a “soft launch.” The 725-seat theatre designed by Henry George Greene of New York was a Spanish Colonial design done with “starkly modern” concepts. The presentation was stellar with the 70mm Century projectors capable of VistaVision, CinemaScope and others along with 12 in-ceiling speakers and five more wall-based RCA speakers. However, the official grand opening of Ciné el Dorado was with a world premiere of John Wayne’s “El Doardo” for ABC Theatres on June 14, 1967. Tucson Mayor Lew Davis was on hand to perform the ribbon cutting. ABC Theatres Circuit wanted “El Dorado” earlier but the film was delayed despite the theater’s readiness leading to the staggered opening.

Ciné el Dorado would survive into the the twin era as ABC Theatres was taken over by Plitt Intermountain Theatres in 1974. Plitt decided to add a second screen to Ciné el Dorado coinciding with the circuit’s shortened name of Plitt Theatres on July 4, 1974. But in the multiplex era of the 1980s, new operator Cineplex Odeon took on the Plitt Circuit would deem the theater too challenged in that space and demolished the theater opting for the 6-screen El Dorado Theatre. Ciné el Dorado was no more.

Tucsonman on September 10, 2014 at 10:55 am

Here’s a link to a photo when they were replacing the 2-screen building with the 6-screen building:http://tucson.com/news/local/tucson-time-capsule-el-dorado-movie-theater-made-way-for/article_6f986ee0-9111-5956-89b4-0cbce2a2f14f.html

Tucsonman on August 28, 2014 at 5:22 pm

My mom, my aunt, & my nana saw A New Hope here.

Tucsonman on August 13, 2014 at 9:54 am

Here are said aerials:http://www.historicaerials.com/aerials.php?scale=2000&lon=-110.86620882154&lat=32.221724912524&year=1980

Tucsonman on August 5, 2014 at 8:12 am

Aerial photos show that the 2nd screen was built on the west side of the original.

ajtarantex on January 20, 2013 at 6:07 pm

yeah Ed Congelli was at the Northpoint and the District Office in San Francisco when it ABC Plitt. Jackie was his Assistant

mousemovie on March 7, 2012 at 9:20 pm

IA – Mr. Congelli and Frank are a couple of names I haven’t heard in a very long time. Good times…

Logan5 on February 27, 2012 at 12:07 am

The El Dorado was part of the Plitt chain and then Cineplex Odeon when I lived in Tucson in the late ‘80s.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on April 19, 2011 at 2:27 pm

Great ads Mike,“French Connection II” certainly a disappointment at many theatres.

rivest266 on January 7, 2011 at 4:11 pm

June 14th, 1967 ad is at
View link
June 25th, 1975 twin announcement is at
View link

Coate on July 18, 2010 at 9:48 pm

<<< The text must have been edited by a moderator after Michael Coate’s comment was posted. >>>

Joe, I copied-and-pasted one of your intro sentences for context when I made my posting of Oct. 5, 2009, so if it’s true that a moderator edited your intro, then it would mean they also edited my comment. Can a moderator explain this?

The CT staff really ought not make revisions to the introductory write-ups without making a note of such revisions. A date and time stamp for revisions would be ideal.

Regardless of whatever editorial monkey business has taken place, it would appear that I was mistaken about Buena Vista being equipped for 70mm upon its construction and grand opening. I’m still under the impression, though, that it had 70mm capability later on in its life despite claims by IA to the contrary.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 12, 2010 at 2:19 am

IA: Thanks for the correction. When I submitted this theater, I did say that the El Dorado was the first house in Tucson equipped for 70mm films (I kept a copy of my original submission, and just checked it.) The text must have been edited by a moderator after Michael Coate’s comment was posted.

An item in Boxoffice from around the time of the El Dorado’s opening was my source, but unfortunately I failed to make a note of the specific issue in which it appeared.

IA on June 11, 2010 at 9:19 pm

El Dorado was first theater in Tucson 70mm equipped. First 70mm
film was “Gone With The Wind”.
Manager: Edward Congelli, Assistant: Linda Wallace
Projectionist: Frank Lauerman

Coate on October 5, 2009 at 9:37 am

The Cine El Dorado opened on June 14, 1967. The debut attraction was, appropriately, “El Dorado.”