Astor Theatre

927 Flatbush Avenue,
Brooklyn, NY 11226

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Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 6, 2014 at 2:31 pm

Three photos of the Trans-Lux Theatre illustrate this article in the June 1, 1935, issue of Motion Picture Herald.

TPH on March 2, 2010 at 2:51 pm

Terrific photos (except for the demolition one of course). Hard to imagine that outside of Manhattan, outer boroughs such as the Bronx & Brooklyn once supported art cinema and foreign films.

linhelen on December 5, 2007 at 8:04 am

Wonderful photo. Thanks!

Warren G. Harris
Warren G. Harris on December 5, 2007 at 7:26 am

The Astor’s marquee and a portion of the vertical sign can be seen in the background of this 1969 view of Norman Mailer campaigning on Flatbush Avenue for a nomination in the next Mayoral election. The Astor was showing Paramount’s “If,” described on the marquee as “An Exciting Miracle.” A message at the bottom says “Save Free TV.” At the time, exhibitors were fighting the arrival of cable reception, which would put the equivalent of a pay box in every home:

doestricher on July 10, 2007 at 1:29 pm

As a teenager in the 1970s, I can tell you that Astor was “the place” to see Kung Fu movies along Flatbush Avenue. It also had a few foreign films. If I remember right, the Kenmore and the Lowes Kings got all the big budget, first run movies and the others on Flatbush had to differentiate themselves. The Albemarle was the place to go to see sci-fi, horror and thrillers (it had “Star Wars” all to itself the summer of ‘77). The Rialto focused on comedies, especially teen movies like “Kentucky Fried Movie.”

linhelen on December 25, 2006 at 5:05 pm

I adored this place. Saw some of the best American and foreign films there as a child. Remember it well. We used to take two buses from Crown Heights to get there, the only place in the area where films like “La Strada” and “Member of the Wedding” were shown.

ERD on December 5, 2005 at 10:33 am

I often used to go with my Dad when I was very young to the Astor. I remember seeing a British film about a boy piano prodogy who is kidnapped. I am not positive of the title

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on December 29, 2004 at 9:29 am

Headers for the Astor Theatre need changing;
aka: Trans-Lux Theatre
Screens: 1
Architect: Thomas W. Lamb

The Trans-Lux opened in 1933 and it closed as the Astor in 1977.

irajoel on November 27, 2004 at 1:25 pm

I saw a lot of foreign and “art” films there in the early sixties that were thought of as very “adult”. Saw Tom Jones there, phaedra with Mercouri, Sundays And Cybelle, The Sporting Life, and a few others. Really can’t recall anything about the theatre itself. Guess it was rather ordinary.

jflundy on July 28, 2004 at 6:54 pm

Astor was Astor running double bills of current release before becoming Trans Lux Newsreel house during WW2, later in post war era reverting to Astor and showing British and other imports.

See photo of pre war Astor:

Brooklyn Public Library link

IraP on May 3, 2004 at 5:52 pm

My father was a projectionist there in the mid to late 60’s. I used to visit him and try to watch the movies backwards, It was difficult, especially wiyh sub-titles!

Warren G. Harris
Warren G. Harris on April 5, 2004 at 11:11 am

Equipped with a rear projection system, this was originally a Trans-Lux newsreel theatre and first opened in the mid-1930s, with Thomas Lamb’s company credited as architect. By the end of the decade, it had been re-named the Astor and switched to late-run double features and revivals. After the end of WWII, it was one of the first theatres in Brooklyn to showcase “foreign” films, playing them as soon as they finished their premiere engagements in Manhattan.

William on November 14, 2003 at 4:12 pm

The Ascot Theatre is located at 2313 Grand Concourse in the Bronx. The above description should be for the Astor Theatre that was located at 927 Flatbush Ave.. The Astor Theatre seated 584 people.

bruces on January 13, 2003 at 2:06 pm

I believe the correct name of this theatre was the “ASTOR”. It stood next to Erasmus Hall High School.