Homewood Theater

2834 18th Street South,
Homewood, AL 35209

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The old Royal Theater was totally remodeled in 1941, to the plans of architect Wilmot C. Douglas of Birmingham. It was given a new facade, faced in Vitrolite and stucco.

The Homewood Theater was closed around 1963.

Contributed by Lost Memory

Recent comments (view all 3 comments)

Backseater
Backseater on February 5, 2005 at 8:14 pm

I must have seen dozens if not hundreds of movies at the Homewood from 1954-1963. In the unfortunate era of segregation, the balcony was “Jim Crowed,” the only Birmingham area theater that I remember being so arranged. There was a separate entrance for Blacks, served by the same box office, leading to the balcony. In the picture linked elsewhere in this site, it’s the door on the far left. Black kids would come down the inside balcony stairs and ask us white kids to get them popcorn and stuff from the concession stand. As I recall fifty years later, we always obliged—or at least, I did. I saw many classics at the Homewood, including Frank Sinatra in the original “Ocean’s Eleven” (beware of imitations), Alec Guinness in the original “Ladykillers” (beware of imitations), Joan Collins in “Land of the Pharoahs” (1956), Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee in “The Mummy” (1959), Gregory Peck in the Guns of Navarone" (1960), Yul Brynner and Steve McQueen in “The Magnificent Seven,” Grant Withers and William Shallert in “The Incredible Shrinking Man,” and John Agar in “The Mole People,” among many others. In the early 1960s it went under new management (?) and changed over to an “art” theater (i.e., Brigitte Bardot). It closed in 1963, at about the same time I went off to college in Memphis. When I returned to B'ham twenty years later, it had become a Schwinn Bicycle store, and later I actually bought a bicycle there (I guess what goes around comes around). Several of the original auditorium doors were still in service in different locations, and the exterior facade was only slightly changed, but no remnant of the balcony or the projection booth had survived. Ah, memories. I haven’t been back since 1994, and so cannot comment on more recent developments. Best wishes, good luck, and good counting to all.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on September 21, 2007 at 5:46 pm

The Homewood was listed in the 1963 IMPA, in its last year of existence as a theater according to the information above. The operating chain was the Waters Theater Co. of Birmingham. J.R. Waters was the film booker, while W.D Waters was the purchasing head.

Bhamwiki
Bhamwiki on December 31, 2010 at 8:50 am

The Birmingham Public Library Digital Collections has a c. 1928 photo of the original Homewood Theatre facade (with ads for the 1928 Lon Chaney police caper “While the City Sleeps”): http://bplonline.cdmhost.com/u?/p4017coll6,1643

And fabulous Birmingham nostalgia site “Birmingham Rewound” has a copy of a brief January 1941 Birmingham News article about the renovations (with the architect’s facade rendering): View link.jpg)

I’m digesting these sources into a Bhamwiki article: http://www.bhamwiki.com/w/Homewood_Theatre

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