Columbia Cinema

2700 Broadway,
New York, NY 10025

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Orlando on October 23, 2017 at 8:31 am

The Edison can be seen in the 1968 movie “Madigan” where Richard Widmark and Harry Guardino encounter Don Stroud seeing “Tobruk” with Rock Hudson and George Peppard which was on the marquee. Exterior and interior shots are used and note the Milk (yes, Milk) vending machine. Concession stand is also seen.

edwinromandotcom on April 8, 2017 at 7:39 pm

This was a favorite theater of mine when I was in college in the late 1980s. I saw this rare film here once called “Julia and Julia' that starred Kathleen Turner. For some reason it made an impression and I can remember sitting in this theater watching that film.

Rollich on March 29, 2012 at 6:07 am

I knew this house as the Edison theater, which makes sense if it later became the Nuevo Edison. I remember the nearby Harn & Hardart with fondness.

jerryon103St on December 1, 2011 at 10:59 am

I remember to going to see The Song of Bernadette (film)at this theater in the 1940s. The theater was just down from the Horn & Hardart Automat where my Mom worked.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on July 27, 2011 at 3:25 am

Street View shows that the Edison Theatre/Columbia Cinema has been demolished, and a high rise project has been built on its site. Compare the photo Al Alvarez linked to earlier.

TPH on November 23, 2009 at 11:23 am

By the time that City Cinemas came on the scene it was too late to rescue this shabby theatre. Unlike its predecessor chain, Cinema 5, City Cinemas may not have had the inclination nor the resources to accomplish a substantial upgrade as Cineplex Odeon did when it acquired the Olympia. Even in its outer borough venues such as the Avenue U and the Tuxedo, Cinema 5 always ran a class act.

RobertR on March 29, 2009 at 5:02 pm

I finally dug out and scanned some pics of the Columbia from a night it hosted a live bodybuilding show.
Marquee shot from across Broadway
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The outer lobby display cases
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The imortal yellow wall
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I have opening night of La Bamba pics which i will scan and post when I locate them.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on July 14, 2008 at 3:14 pm

Advertised as the Broadway Photoplay in 1919.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on July 31, 2006 at 4:48 am

Here’s a 1985 ad from the Spanish language publication El Diario:
El Carro de la Muerte 9/20/85

The paper also ran a neighborhood movie guide catered to its Spanish speaking and bilingual readers:
Cartelera Cinematografica 9/20/85

Both clippings list the theater as “Nuevo Edison”.

RobertR on December 12, 2005 at 2:24 am

I have a lot of pictures of this theatre before and after the renovations (including the yellow wall). When I locate them I will post them.

dave-bronx™ on December 12, 2005 at 1:25 am

City Cinemas booked and operated the Columbia under a management agreement with the same owner as the D.W.Griffith, Nick and Justin (although Justin had passed away) in an effort to increase their number of screens and leverage with the studios. The place was a dump, all I remember is it had a hideous yellow wall in the lobby, and the auditorium floor was made of wood. They didn’t have a 306 projectionist – a friend or relative of the owner ran the machines, and we never heard from the union. The ushers were kept busy chasing the rats and hitting them with brooms. After a short time City Cinemas realized what a disaster the place was and got out. It was then converted into a Woolworth store.

bamtino on December 11, 2005 at 7:37 pm

I believe this theatre was also known as Broadway Theatre and Nuevo Edison, in addition to the other names mentioned in the description and posts.

RobertR on July 5, 2005 at 4:45 pm

In 1977 the Edison was showing English language films.
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RobertR on October 2, 2004 at 1:14 pm

Here are a few things The Columbia played in 1989 when it was mainly playing $3 moveovers and an occasional first run.

7/14/89 Star Trek V
7/21 Indian Jones & The Last Crusade
8/4 Field of Dreams
8/11 Friday the 13th VIII
8/18 Eddie & The Cruisers 2
8/25 Milo & Otis (First Run matinees) Eve- Wired (first run lasted a week)
9/1 Milo & Otis (eve) Honey I Shrunk the Kids & Lock Up
9/8 Milo & Otis (eve) Turner & Hooch
9/15 Milo & Otis (eve) Uncle Buck
9/22 Milo & Otis (eve) Dead Poets Society
9/29 Milo & Otis (eve) Batman
10/13 Milo & Otis (eve) Lethal Weapon 2
10/20 Milo & Otis (eve) When Harry Met Sally
10/27 Milo & Otis (eve) Innocent Man
11/3 Milo & Otis (eve) Sea of Love & Halloween V
11/10 Best of the Best
11/17 Prancer
11/24 Prancer (eve) Communion
12/1-12/22 closed for renovations
12/22 All Dogs Go to Heaven (eve) Look Who’s Talking
1/5/90 The Bear (eve) She Devil
1/12 The Bear (eve first run) Leatherface Texas Chainsaw 3
1//19 Texas Chainsaw 3 & Ski Patrol
1/26 Family Business
2/11 Madhouse
2/16 War of the Roses
theatre closed up on 2/22/90

Movieplace on July 20, 2004 at 7:47 am

The Olympia Theater on Broadway and 107th as well as the Essex/Edison/Columbia are gone. They were totally altered by the end of their life. The Essex/Edison/Columbia had been gutted and had been a drug store for a while.
The Olympia had been quaded in the 70’s and then cleaned up and twined by the late 80’s.
I have a chunk of the Olympia in my store. When the marquee was removed the original entrance was revealed. The entrance way had a beautiful painted terra cotta arch over it. The demolition crew saved me a chunk and now it is on display.

br91975 on June 28, 2004 at 8:11 pm

The Columbia Spectator only ran the article about the demolition of the Olympia which was linked on that web site as a campus matter-of-interest piece. As the article notes, the non-Columbia affiliated Clarett Group owns the property on which the Olympia stood.

br91975 on June 28, 2004 at 3:01 pm

Within the link below is both a brief article – and a photo – of the clearing of the building which formerly housed the Columbia Cinema, among other tenants, and within that link is a link to a Columbia Spectator article, discussing the university’s plans for the site and some of the concerns of neighborhood residents.

joemasher on June 27, 2004 at 4:11 am

I believe you’re thinking of the Olympia at Broadway & 107th, which was demolished last year—the Columbia Cinema building is still standing.

br91975 on June 26, 2004 at 11:37 pm

The building which formerly housed the Columbia Cinema has been demolished.

William on February 24, 2004 at 6:29 pm

You can see the Edison marquee in the 1968 Henry Fonda movie “Madigan”.