Bow-Tie Tenafly Cinema 4

4 W. Railroad Avenue,
Tenafly, NJ 07670

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Tenafly Theatre

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The New Bergen Theatre opened as a film house in the 1920’s. It featured a very small stage, with a somewhat elaborate proscenium, and a tiny lobby. In 1994 it became the very first Clearview Cinema.

Now divided into four, with one in the balcony and three downstairs, the proscenium is still intact in theatre #1, along with two of the original chandeliers and stained glass “EXIT” signs. Charming small-town theatre across from an amazing train station. In June 2013, Bow-Tie Cinemas took over when they took most Clearview locations.

Contributed by Joe Masher

Recent comments (view all 13 comments)

teecee on July 21, 2005 at 4:47 am

1966 ad for the New Bergen, courtesy of Bill Huelbig:
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piehle on January 26, 2006 at 8:21 am

The Bergen Theater had a WurliTzer Stlye B, 2 manual, 4 rank theater organ installed August 12th, 1926. During the war effort, all the metal pipework was removed. The console, blower, and relay, entombed under the covered orchestra pit and in the basement crawlspace, were destroyed by repeated basement flooding. The remains of the organ were sold “as-is” in the early 1970’s.

teecee on March 2, 2006 at 4:11 am

Listed as a Brandt Theater in the 1976 International Motion Picture Almanac.

hotwaterbottle on April 20, 2006 at 6:45 pm

I worked here as a usher in the summer of 1974. It was my very first job out of high school and was very excited. The only movie I saw during my whole tenure there was The Exorcist. It must have played the whole summer. The manager was an old woman, Mrs. Hallad, who was too cheap to sell fresh popcorn or fountain soda, so one of my jobs was to handle a cigar box with change in it, so customers could feed the vending machines that dispensed these items. She did'nt believe in snack bars! After seeing The Exorcist about 10 times, and since we were bored out of our minds, myself and another usher would amuse ourselves by taking Tic Tacs and throwing them one by one over the partition that separated the auditorium from the vending machines, hoping to bean a innocent customer on the head! I know, my bad.
I do remember the projection booth had 2 projectors that used carbon rods. The lobby had 1 wall that was mirrored, to give the effect of it being bigger than it was. There were 4 poster cases on the walls, with frames to hold 30x40 posters, instead of the usual 27x41 1-sheets. Along the mirrored wall was a small utility closet, with among other things, a huge stack of presskits and trade magazines like Independent Film Journal and Boxoffice. Several copies of these magazines made it home with me; I recall one time I accidentially knocked over the stack and they made a hell of a loud thud. Mrs. Hallad was not pleased with me! Her office was located upstairs in the balcony next to the projection booth. She had a large box of folded 1-sheets on the floor at the time, and I plotted and scheemed to break in and steal as many as I could, but I chickened out.
The theatre is currently carved up into 4 screens. Probably the worst screen to see anything on is the upstairs screen. You enter the room in front of the screen, which you can touch and, if you dont like the movie, shake or smear chocolate onto. There is a storage room on the right side of the room, which ushers continually go in and out of with bags of popcorn, cups, etc. You can’t help but hear and see them, thereby destroying any involvement with the movie you are watching. Very annoying and not very pretty!

longislandmovies on July 21, 2006 at 8:09 pm

lost memory ——-love the new pic postings…..

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on April 22, 2007 at 3:57 am

This from Variety, November 14, 1956. Kids today!!!

“Wealthy” Tenafly, N.J., Kids Called Monsters

“Malicious mischief committed by disorderly teenagers in the Bergen Theatre, Tenafly, N. J., has reached the point where operator Ray Rhone has barred the teenagers unless accompanied by adults. Among nuisances perpetrated, he said, were ripping seats, stripping tiles from lavatory walls and throwing eggs and other objects.

Particularly on Friday nights, Rhone asserted, the noise and general disorder were so bad that patrons could neither concentrate on what was on the screen nor hear the sound. In his opinion the ill behavior of the teenagers stems from lack of proper parental supervision. Tenafly area, incidentally, is a wealthy suburban district near New York with the price of homes ranging from $20,000 to $60,000."

moviebuff82 on May 18, 2008 at 7:30 pm

not too far from this theater, there was a strange murder case that closed Tenafly Road, making the commute to this small theater a bit tricky. At least one suspect has been arrested in California.

moviebuff82 on January 11, 2011 at 4:03 pm

A correction…..the Tenafly theater was bought by Clearview the same year it was founded, in 1994.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on January 11, 2011 at 4:40 pm

Hard to believe a Theatre running the “EXORCIST” first run would HAVE NO concession Stand.I honestly don’t think I have ever read that on CT.

moviebuff82 on June 2, 2015 at 5:29 pm

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