Amityville Twin

217-19 Broadway,
Amityville, NY 11701

Unfavorite No one has favorited this theater yet

Showing 23 comments

robboehm
robboehm on November 5, 2011 at 10:05 am

Timing is right since the theatre was constructed 1960-61.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 5, 2011 at 3:17 am

This house is probably the theater at Amityville that was designed by architect Maurice D. Sornik in 1960, as listed in his entry in the 1962 edition of the AIA’s American Architects Directory.

robboehm
robboehm on April 15, 2011 at 5:16 pm

As it turns out there were THREE Amityville theatres on the same site. The first started out as the Star and was renamed when taken over by Prudential. Prudential then built a new, larger theatre on the same site taking over neighboring retail space. Then when Broadway was widened the second theatre was “in the way”. A new, ever larger Amityville was built by Prudential. Then twinned. Then closed.

gfm8959
gfm8959 on October 21, 2009 at 9:30 am

Thanks for the update- I assume, of course, that they were siblings and not “sisters” as in nuns!!

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on October 20, 2009 at 7:22 pm

They were from AIT…Cathy and I cant remember the other sisters name. When the theater closed they both went to work in the dm office for Almi century. (might have been RKO CENTURY WARNER BY THEN) There reputation as managers of this theater was stella. I have never been in this theater.

gfm8959
gfm8959 on October 9, 2009 at 11:07 am

To longislandmovies, can you tell me more about the sisters who ran the Amity theater. Were they employed by AIT? How did you know they took very good care of the theater etc. etc.
Thanks,
Jerry

DonRosen
DonRosen on February 23, 2009 at 2:56 am

What year? I was going to the Bg “A” since 1960.

robboehm
robboehm on February 19, 2009 at 9:14 am

There were two Amityville theatres on the same site. When Broadway was widened the first, and smaller one, fell. A new theatre, double the size was erected in its place. In ads it was referred to as
The Big A.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on August 22, 2007 at 2:46 am

There is an Amityville Theatre listed in the 1930 edition of Film Daily Yearbook with a seating capacity given as 515. The 1941 edition of F.D.Y. lists it as a 480 seat theatre, while in the 1943 edition it has a seating capacity listed as 734, which is the same as in 1950 edition of F.D.Y.

Bloop
Bloop on May 22, 2007 at 5:15 pm

When this was a “blaxploitation” theatre in the mid 1970’s, they showed “Abby”, a black version of The Exorcist! I believe this was the only theater on Long Island that showed it. This film was sued and yanked by Warner Brothers for being too close to The Exorcist as well, and was a rare movie for some 20 years! Does anyone know if this theater played “The Amityville Horror” (1979)? LOL!

Bloop
Bloop on May 22, 2007 at 5:12 pm

In the early 1980’s, I saw some art/revival movies: Andy Warhol’s Frankenstein, Christiane “F”, and some others….does anyone remember this?

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on March 9, 2005 at 4:45 am

The area went bad at that time a fact that has hurt many theaters….

longislandmovies
longislandmovies on March 9, 2005 at 4:43 am

Two sisters ran this theater very well cared like it was there own but the #s were not there.

DonRosen
DonRosen on March 9, 2005 at 4:21 am

RobertR:

I posted the other “Amity” theatre awhile ago. It was actually in South Farmingdale. The Big “A” Amityville was the only theatre in that town.

Vito
Vito on March 9, 2005 at 3:06 am

Oh boy Bob, now you have me scraching my head trying to recall
“Sound 360”. I remember it was a 35mm four track magnetic print,but the tracks were re-directed mostly to the surrounds. We had four huge speakers installed on the side walls, and at least 2 or possible 3 of the 4 tracks were used to create stereo surround sound In that way the sound would travel around the theatre giving you the effect of 360 degree sound. “Damnation Alley” was the first and only movie presented in this format.It was 1977, the year in which “Star Wars”, with Dolby optical stereo format, began the beginning of the end for magnetic sound in theatres.

RobertR
RobertR on March 8, 2005 at 3:23 pm

The other Amityville still needs to be posted, that’s one I don’t know anything about.

BobT
BobT on March 8, 2005 at 2:31 pm

It was a great neighborhood place. Before they twinned it they played “Damnation Alley” which was presented in “Sound 360”—a revolutionary sight and sound experience. It was an early surround system that I’m sure Vito would know the technicals. They also had an exclusive stereo engagement of “Beyond The Door”, an early Exorcist ripoff. When they twinned, they basically just threw a wall down the middle but wasn’t a disaster like the Lowes South Shore Mall. They also played alot of 3D in the early eighties. I saw Hitchcock’s “Dial M For Murder” and Friday the 13th 3D. I agree with Orlando, great management till the end.

DonRosen
DonRosen on December 13, 2004 at 2:51 pm

I saw THE MUSIC MAN, MAJOR DUNDEE, THE UGLY AMERICAN, POCKETFUL OF MIRACLES, STAR!, and countless other films at this wonderful theatre.

The other Amity Theatre was an A.I.T. run theatre in the Inter-County shopping Center.

RobertR
RobertR on November 13, 2004 at 2:46 pm

I dont know anything about the other Amityville Theatre, maybe somebody can post that one.

Vito
Vito on August 22, 2004 at 1:57 am

I worked the “Big A” for several years in the late 60s early 70s
when it was operated by Prudential which became UA. Once UA took over things began to go downhill with the exception of the projection. The man in charge of UA projection, Joe Kelly, would visit the theatres and keep the sound and projection in top form.
We presented many 35mm 4 track magnetic stereo movies including a reissue of “Gone With The Wind”, as well as “Hello Dolly” and “2001"
Sitting in the Lodge costs an additional $.50 and as Orlando mentioned had very comfortable rocking chair seats. There was a huge curved screen and a powerful (for it’s day) sound system. We had a daily matinee at 2pm Monday thru Friday followed by two evening shows starting at 7pm. Saturday and Sunday were continuous from 2PM
Due to it’s length, "Gone With The Wind” played continuous every day from 12 noon with three showings a day for the 4 week run.
It was a great place to see a movie.

Orlando
Orlando on May 7, 2004 at 4:26 am

P.S. The seating is also incorrect as the theatre seated slightly over a thousand seats. This was the second Amityville Theatre to operate and the seating capacity listed is for the other Amityville Theatre.

Orlando
Orlando on May 7, 2004 at 4:24 am

This was opened as a Prudential (UA) house and was taken overby Almi in 1980, twinned and became a Almi-Century theatre. When RKO was added to the fold, this was closed in 1986. This was a modern 1960’s theatre and was hardly “crumbling”. It was stigmatized as a “black house” and the bookings catered to that clientele. They had lounge chairs in the balcony. It was well run by the managers who cared and the owners who didn’t. The building survives as an office complex with retail on the main level.