Apex Theater

4813 Massachusetts Avenue NW,
Washington, DC 20016

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MovieMemories on February 26, 2016 at 7:18 am

Growing up in the DC area during the 1960s and 70s, I enjoyed many wonderful movie experiences in this theater. Gone With the Wind’s 70 mm reserved seat engagement played this theater fall ‘67 through spring '68. Also saw Yours, Mine and Ours and Airport '75 here. Screen had a beautiful gathered cerise silk curtain that rose up. Remember the unique lighting fixtures as mentioned by sstrack. Was sorry to see it come down for another soulless office building.

rivest266 on June 21, 2015 at 10:44 am

November 20th, 1940 grand opening ad in photo section

evieemee on March 28, 2014 at 1:05 pm

Just posted two original photos of the medallions ( in color ) that were on the front of the Apex Theatre.

JohnRitch on January 26, 2013 at 5:29 am

In 1977, right after the Apex was demolished, I came into possession of a lot of beautiful pieces of brass from its interior stairway. Oddly, i still have these — always hoping to put them to respectful good use — but have neve been able to place them into visual context. I’d welcome seeing any pics of the theater’s interior.

HornerJack on March 31, 2012 at 4:43 am

What a beautiful facade – simple, clean, elegant. Wish The Apex was still around.

sconnell1 on March 31, 2012 at 2:10 am

“Patton” played its first-run engagement at the Apex from March of 1970 to July of 1970.

Giles on March 16, 2011 at 7:20 pm

was the theatrical run of PATTON in 70mm? what else played here as such?

TLSLOEWS on August 16, 2010 at 6:56 pm

Thanks for the photos MrBluehaunt,and Jack.

MrBluehaunt on January 14, 2010 at 5:59 pm

Posted a few photos from a 1940’s book:
View link

sconnell1 on April 1, 2009 at 9:24 pm

The Apex opened on November 20, 1940. Its opening attraction was “Down Argentine Way” starring Betty Grable, Don Ameche, and Carmen Miranda.

sstrack on August 2, 2008 at 2:14 pm

The Apex was one of the major houses of Washington’s KB Theatres and home to their corporate offices. I remember many of the people that worked there in the early 1960s, from Bailey the janitor, to Bill Hunter, the manager, and Mr. Burka and Mr. Goldman, the owners of KB. It was a great place to work and the source of many fond memories. The theater was huge, sat over 1,000, with 2 balcony level “party rooms”. It had two main aisles. The ceiling featured a huge horsehoe shaped light fixture with gold hemispheres that had holes cut in them that were filled with colored glass or plastic that emited light from a single bulb inside. Changing the bulbs required a trip up a ladder located back stage. The ceiling must have been 30' high. Once up the ladder, you went on to a small platform and through a small door to a very narrow catwalk. Then, partially standing or crawling, depending on your courage, you made your way to the burned out fixture and replaced the bulb. Wanting as quick a retreat as possible back to the relative safety of the ladder, most of us just left the old bulbs on top of the ceiling lathe – kind of a light bulb graveyard.

GaryParks on May 28, 2008 at 9:11 pm

Visible in the photo at the top is a semicircular decorative lighting feature over the proscenium which seems to be identical to that still surviving in the Senator Theatre, Baltimore, also by Zink. Slits around the edge of this feature emit light in spectrum-like rays out across the ceiling—a simple but dramatic effect.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on October 4, 2005 at 2:48 am

The Little Theatre, Washington D.C. has its own listing on Cinema Treasures.

PAULKERSHNER on June 19, 2005 at 2:18 pm

The Little Theatre was located in downtown DC on 9th-10th or 11th street in the middle of the block. That is all the information that I have on that theatre. Try Washington Post Archives for the 40’s.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 18, 2005 at 1:23 am

Does anyone remember a D.C. movie theatre that in the 1940s and later was called the “Little Cinema” or “Little Theatre”? I’ve seen references to it but could not find it on Cinema Treasures. It was an art house. I’d like to know the address and/or other names for this place.

rlvjr on May 23, 2005 at 9:53 pm

The APEX spent most of its life as a northwest Washington neighborhood theater. Then in the early 1960’s the KB chain made it a first run house that showed many fine Hollywood films as well as foreign pictures. Ingmar Bergman’s “THE SEVENTH SEAL” was one of the early first runs. Such “art” first runs were extremely successful and the APEX often had turn-away crowds during the 60’s and 70’s. This era saw steep price increases from $1.00 to $1.50 to $2.00 to $3.00. There were also a few reserved seat first runs such as the Academy Award Best Picture “PATTON.” The APEX never “declined.” It was the value of the real estate that killed it.

PAULKERSHNER on January 29, 2005 at 7:43 pm

The Apex as part of the KB theatres chain.

Bob007 on April 10, 2003 at 5:49 am

The Apex closed with a 70mm engagement of MGM’s “Logan’s Run”.