Savannah Theatre

222 Bull Street,
Savannah, GA 31401

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Showing 1 - 25 of 32 comments

menright
menright on April 25, 2014 at 8:51 am

Was there a theatre on the site between 1906 and 1948? To say it was continuous would imply there was.

fyfas
fyfas on February 6, 2014 at 2:00 pm

The Savannah Theatre was where “roadshows” were booked when such things existed; approx 800 seats, two shows a day. Films like LION IN WINTER, CATCH 22 and PAINT YOUR WAGON. Often a twelve week booking.

I tried to be there for the start of PAINT YOUR WAGON as often as I could. (Drove the 50'ish manager crazy; she thought I was spying on her.)

That film began with the soundtrack score only playing. The Grand Drape rose slowly while sepia toned footage began as the screen curtain opened. It was magic. And the ticket price? $1.75!

fyfas
fyfas on February 6, 2014 at 1:50 pm

I came to this website to look through possible pictures of theatres I worked in (1967 to 1974) in Savannah, Georgia.

I worked for Weis Theatres which did essentially control exhibition in Savannah with five hardtops and three drive-ins. ABC theatres had the Lucas around the corner from the Weis and another hardtop (name escapes me) plus there were one or two competing drive-ins as well.

I started at the Weis Cinema on the southside of Savannah which was their 906 seat flagship. In time, I took on the print advertising responsibilities for the entire circuit (theatres in Savannah, Macon, Augusta, Statesboro and Atlanta).

To take that on I was moved to the main office adjacent to the Weis Theatre (approx. 1200 seats) which I managed, too.

The company was run by Albert Weis, son of Fred and Edna Weis. Fred was already dead but Edna was still very active and was a presence in my lobby nearly every day especially if we were busy.

It was Viet Nam and I had to join the Air Force in 1966. After training I was assigned to Savannah where my next door neighbor hired me to be his part-time assistant running the southside Weis Cinema. He left soon after for the Army and I was in charge of the Weis Cinema after the replacement manager was caught stealing. I was permitted to be generous with theatre passes so as to have my days free and satisfying the Air Force overnight.

Working for this company brought me into contact with all of the studios setting up co-op advertising budgets. In 1974 I left to go to work for Universal where I stayed until 1999. Universal first put me in the Atlanta office. From there I was in the New York office for two years and the at the Studio until retiring.

HornerJack
HornerJack on June 3, 2012 at 8:00 am

what was the original seating capacity of this version of the theater. Facade implies if was a lot more than 350.

JohnMessick
JohnMessick on June 3, 2012 at 6:45 am

Cool looking movie theatre..Really like the ticket island.

AlAlvarez
AlAlvarez on February 17, 2011 at 9:39 am

This 1936 issue of Boxoffice has a history and photo.

View link

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on January 24, 2011 at 10:00 pm

Was this one of Albert Weis' theatres?At one time in the seventies he had nearly the whole city,

AndyCallahanMajorMajor
AndyCallahanMajorMajor on January 21, 2011 at 4:42 pm

Here are my pictures from December 2010.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 23, 2009 at 3:27 am

The September 11, 1948, issue of Boxoffice ran an article about the intention of Fred G. Weis to rebuild the Savannah Theatre. It said that Weis, son of impresario Albert A. Weis, had been operating the Savannah since 1920. This item also named Robert E. Collins and Carl E. Helfrich as the architects for the project.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 5, 2009 at 10:38 pm

A photo of the new Art Moderne entrance of the Savannah Theatre appeared in the November 21, 1951, issue of Boxoffice magazine. According to the caption, the rebuilt theater had been designed by Florida architect Robert E. Collins, with local architect Carl E. Helfrich associated.

Patsy
Patsy on February 10, 2009 at 3:29 pm

Well, thank you from this Patsy! ;)

Patsy
Patsy on May 9, 2008 at 11:46 am

Lost: Great marquee photo. I did go to Savannah in Feb. enroute to a wedding in FL. This theatre is an art deco survivor on the exterior though the interior has been updated.

Patsy
Patsy on February 6, 2008 at 7:05 pm

I will find myself in Savannah in the near future so will check out this historic theatre at 222 Bull Street and report back here!

Patsy
Patsy on August 2, 2007 at 2:52 pm

Neat photo with a great looking marquee!

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on July 23, 2007 at 2:13 pm

Savannah has many wonderful old buildings. The Savannah Theatre is listed in the 1897-98 edition of the Julius Cahn Official Theatrical Guide. Charles Coburn was the Mgr. The seating capacity was 1,268. The proscenium opening was 32 feet wide X 27 feet high, and the stage was 38 feet deep. The house had electric illumination and there were 6 members of the house orchestra. Savannah’s 1897 population was 65,000. The Savannah Theatre is also listed in LHAT’s “Directory of Historic American Theatres” by John Fisk and Carlton Ward. (Greenwood Press, 1987). It says that the theatre opened in 1818 at Bull Street and Chippewa Square; the architect was William Jay. It was at one time known as the Atheneum. It was remodeled in 1895, and suffered fires in 1906, 1944 and 1948. The Guide points out that the Drayton Street wall is “most likely the only part of the building which remains from 1818”.

Patsy
Patsy on November 1, 2005 at 8:09 pm

I just went on the Savannah Theatre site and clicked on audio for Jukebox Journey! The music is fantastic and this teenager-at-heart will be going to see these talented kids sooner than later! The show is full of action, excitement and the music we all danced to in the 60’s!

Patsy
Patsy on September 24, 2005 at 12:29 pm

Thanks for the photo of the curved marquee. It’s somewhat rare to see marquees that are of this design. My former corner hometown theatre had one and it was seen from both ends of main street!

Patsy
Patsy on September 24, 2005 at 12:27 pm

Matt: Hello. This is the gal and her husband who still want to see Jukebox Journey this fall or winter so I hope you are still in production. Please send an email to as I have missplaced your email address. Thanks so much.

mattmeece
mattmeece on September 24, 2005 at 11:06 am

Hey you guys, sorry it has been a while since I have been on here. Here is the deal with the theatre. It has been through 2 pretty major fires over the past 200 years. In 1948 it was rebuilt as an art deco theatre. The back wall which you can still see from the inside of the theatre, is still the original 1818 back wall. As well as the a lot of the side walls. The rest as been rebuilt. You can see some of the different looks of the building on our website under the theatre section. www.savannahtheatre.com/theatre

Patsy
Patsy on June 1, 2005 at 4:42 pm

I just viewed the photos and they look like 2 entirely different theatres when you compare early photos to present photos….marquee, etc.

Patsy
Patsy on June 1, 2005 at 4:39 pm

I guess it is as I just read Matt’s post talking about Jukebox Journey…haven’t seen that production yet, but heard that it’s a MUST-SEE!

Patsy
Patsy on June 1, 2005 at 4:38 pm

Is this the same theatre where the long running Jukebox Journey is being performed as I don’t recall it looking like the print that is for sale?

teecee
teecee on June 1, 2005 at 3:06 pm

Nice print for sale:

View link

PS I had to check lostmemory’s second link because this print looks nothing like the current theater!

Patsy
Patsy on March 9, 2005 at 2:15 pm

lostmemory: Thanks for the map! ;–)