Capri Cinema I & II

5304 Kingston Pike,
Knoxville, TN 37918

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rivest266 on September 3, 2018 at 5:00 pm

Capri 70 Cinerama opened on November 23rd, 1967. Ad uploaded.

rivest266 on September 3, 2018 at 4:24 pm

This opened as Pike on June 5th, 1946 and renamed Capri Cinema on May 16th, 1963. Grand opening ads in the photo section.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 17, 2014 at 7:43 pm

The article tntim linked to says that the Pike Theatre was designed by the Knoxville architectural and engineering firm Fred Manley Associates.

tntim on June 17, 2014 at 7:38 pm

I found the article about the construction of the Pike here in “The Showman’s Trade Review”. It is not as long as the one in “Boxoffice”, but it is still informative.

tntim on June 17, 2014 at 2:41 pm

Joe, I have no idea why it would be put in the rustic category. When the Pike was built in 1946, it was the typical post war design. There was a story in Boxoffice about the innovative use of precast concrete slaps that were used for the side and rear walls. They are currently re-working the Boxoffice Vault web page, so I am unable to post a link.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 17, 2014 at 10:02 am

I’m wondering why the Capri I & II’s style is listed as Rustic. Did it have some sort of rustic features when it was the Pike?

tntim on February 26, 2013 at 5:46 am

The first handprints were from Ingrid Bergman from the premiere of “A Walk in The Spring Rain” in April 1970. I have posted a picture of the event in the photos section. I have also posted additional photos on the Capri Cinema III & IV thread since technically that was the former Capri-70 before it was twined.

ryderdvs on February 24, 2013 at 11:55 pm

I recall seeing handprints and signatures outside on this theater’s sidewalk – Oscar-winners Patricia Neal and Cliff Robertson, amongst others. Last I saw, these were moved over to the former Terrace theater.

tntim on May 3, 2011 at 2:59 pm

The gentleman that is mentioned is Walter Morris. He built both the Pike and the Tower theatres. C.H. Simpson leased both theatres from Mr. Morris in 1963 and remodeled both theatres and changed their names. The Pike became the Capri Cinema and the Tower became the Lenox. In cir.1965 the state bought the Lenox for the I-640/ Broadway interchange and in 1967 Mr. Morris used the money from the sale of the Lenox to built the Capri-70 adjoining the west side of the Capri Cinema which Mr. Simpson operated. The Capri Cinema and the Capri-70 were two separate buildings that shared a common wall. They should not be considered similar to today’s multiplexes as they each had their own lobby, boxoffice, projection booth, and heat and air systems.

After Mr. Morris’s death, Simpson Operating Company bought both theatres from Mr. Morris’s estate. In the mid seventies Simpson twined the Capri Cinema and it became the Capri Cinema I & II. In the late eighties, they also twined the Capri-70 and that became the Capri III & IV.

Regal Cinemas leased the Capri theatres form Simpson Operating Company in the early nineties and ran them for three years. Regal was unable to re-negotiate a new lease and the Capri’s were closed. In the mid nineties the Capri theatres were sold to Bennett Art Gallery. They demolished three quarters of the old Capri Cinema and completely gutted the old Capri-70 which they turned into their art gallery.

The Ace Hardware store is actually in the old Shoney’s Restaurant which was on the east side of the Capri Cinema.

michaelkaplan on January 15, 2011 at 5:58 am

I think the Pike may have been the little theater next to (and connected to) the Capri. I was there on the day workers ripped off the old silver screen. The buildings are still intact and have been remodeled into an art gallery.

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on November 25, 2010 at 8:02 am

fergusmacivor, Look up the Capri Theater in Knoxville, here on Cinema Treasures, I think it’s the same theater?