Wagner Theater

110 Wyckoff Avenue,
Brooklyn, NY 11237

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Opened on June 18, 1921 as the Reo Theatre, with 600 seats, it also had an open air roof theatre for use in the summer months. It stood on Wyckoff Avenue in the Ridgewood section of Brooklyn. It was listed in the 1930 edition of Film Daily Yearbook as (Closed).

Later renamed Wagner Theatre, it specialized in screening German films. Closed again in around 1939, due possibly to anti-German sentiments, it reopened again by 1943. In the late-1960’s the Wagner Theatre was operating as an adult movie theatre and in its final days it was showing Spanish language movies, finally closing in 1979.

Since demolished a Women’s Health Center has been built on the site.

Contributed by philipgoldberg

Recent comments (view all 69 comments)

Warren G. Harris
Warren G. Harris on March 18, 2009 at 2:12 pm

Here’s an ad for the new program that opened on October 25th, 1967. I don’t know if 11:30 PM was closing time or just the start of the last complete show: View link

Bway
Bway on April 20, 2009 at 3:00 pm

Looks like the Wagner’s adult format was well in swing by the 60’s already.

johndereszewski
johndereszewski on February 13, 2010 at 1:24 pm

Below is an ad for “I Am Curious Yellow” which, among many other places, was shown at the Wagner. (Hope the link works.)

Interestingly, the Wagner is listed as a Queens theater. While a number of theaters situated in Queens, particularly the Ridgewood and the Madison, have often been lumped in with the Brooklyn theaters in movie advertisements, due to the old zip code that straddled the two boroughs, this is the first time where I have seen a Brooklyn theater assigned to Queens. (I guess neither borough would really want to claim it.)

Also, the mix of theaters showing this film is interesting. While it does contain the usual porn places – such as the Wagner and the Cinart – this movie was also shown at such mainstream venues as Forest Hills' Midway and Manhattan’s Academy of Music. I guess this was a different time.

View link

johndereszewski
johndereszewski on August 29, 2010 at 12:57 pm

I need to correct something I said in my Feb. 22 2009 comment, where I asserted that the entire blockfront, as depicted in Bway’s terrific picture, had been replaced by new buildings. Well, based on my visit there yesterday, the three buildings situated to the right of the old Wagner are, while somewhat altered, still very much in existence. Further down the block, however, is a large, multi-tiered parking facility that certainly disrupts the streetscape.

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on May 4, 2012 at 7:03 pm

Here’s an undated view with Wagner marquee: nyc.gov

johndereszewski
johndereszewski on May 5, 2012 at 1:13 am

Great shot, TT – and I am sure that a load of additional old pictures will soon be posted here as a result of NYC’s recent release of its very substantial archives.

This picture was probably taken in the late 70’s – early 80’s, when the Wagner has just closed its doors and had not yet been replaced with the medical facility that now stands in its place.

Bway
Bway on May 30, 2012 at 12:18 am

The tax photos are from the 1980’s, and there is a wealth of great photos there! Especially of Bushwick where things were at their worst. I wish they would publish the 1930’s tax photos too online.

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on May 30, 2012 at 3:18 pm

There are very few theatres in the 1980s tax photos, and, unfortunately, most were taken when the theatres were closed, decaying, or converted to other use. I know that there were similar photos taken by the City in 1940-41 in anticipation of America entering WW2, but are you sure of a 1930s set?

johndereszewski
johndereszewski on June 3, 2012 at 11:52 am

I think the 1930’s photos that Bway was referring to were taken in conjunction with the 1939-40 Worlds Fair. I am not aware of any set taken immediately after that.

Matthew Prigge
Matthew Prigge on November 15, 2012 at 2:55 am

If anyone has any stories about going to/ working at this threatre in its adult days, I would love to hear them. I am chronicling the histories of adult theatres in the US. Please contact me at Thanks!

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