Eros Theatre

732 Eighth Avenue,
New York, NY 10036

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Showing 1 - 25 of 28 comments

scott42
scott42 on September 15, 2012 at 10:36 pm

hey ken- thats me in the gray camouflage shirt taking the sign down. the wilson sister sold it to me when they closed.

bardex
bardex on June 27, 2010 at 7:49 am

“Gay porn in the 1970s,” I work with Toby Ross, who was a friend of J. Brian’s. Brian helped him out on REFLECTIONS OF YOUTH and Toby talks about him constantly and still believes he was the best gay filmmaker who ever lived. I’m not sure if you knew Toby or not but he also dealt with Chelly. I’m also very curious who you are. I’d love to chat with you about these movies and your work with Brian.
Email me at if you end up seeing this post.

Joe

pornguy2
pornguy2 on April 3, 2010 at 9:53 am

Mrs. Chelly Wilson owned the Adonis and every other gay movie theater in the 1970s in NYC.

I was in charge of distributing J Brian films, who was the hottest
gay film maker at the time, and talked to Chelly several times.

She was coarse, almost rude, and proved to be a thief, a liar and a cheat at every turn.

The last film we sent her was “Raw Country” contracted for $10,000
and she managed to convince the UPS driver the correct amount was
$1,000 for this small package (2 reels of film) and he gave her the film and took the check.

She laughed at us all the way to the bank and we never did business with her again

Rot in hell Chelly

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on February 26, 2010 at 5:40 pm

The bar is now called the Playwright Celtic Pub.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on May 20, 2009 at 6:29 am

The sign was taken down in 1997:
http://tinyurl.com/pty4zb

This was another Times Square place in the early 70s. Not listed on CT, as far as I could tell.
http://tinyurl.com/o2up25

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on September 22, 2007 at 4:49 am

BTW, that’s the Capri Theatre’s marquee that can be glimpsed in the foreground of the image above. The Venus Theater is just barely visible behind the Eros. All three were opened between 1968-1969 by Chelly Wilson – who also ran the Cameo and Adonis Theatres on the other side of Eighth Avenue.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on September 22, 2007 at 4:40 am

Here’s that same 1991 screengrab from Hollywood90038’s video footage – now that his link no longer works. Thanks for the permission, H.

Vaughn
Vaughn on March 23, 2007 at 6:13 pm

We had an Eros Theater in Jacksonville back in the 70’s.Never went in there,it was just a little hole inthe wall peepshow place.Doeas anyone have any pictures of the old peepshow machines,the 8mm or 16mm variety from the 70’s?

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on December 13, 2006 at 1:58 pm

Please update the seat count to 114 per C/O information posted on Oct 4, 2006.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on October 5, 2006 at 12:57 pm

Thanks for taking them, woody. I hope you don’t mind that I’ve been sharing links to those photos all around the web! I noticed a lot of them were posted to flickr some time back, so I figured it would be OK. I snapped some shots along 42nd Street and Times Square myself back in October of ‘93… That was a stark and depressing time for the strip… with all those once-lively and colorful theaters shuttered or gasping their last breaths. But, at least there was some semblance of character and atmosphere left. Now it’s like walking through an enormous pinball machine.

woody
woody on October 5, 2006 at 6:42 am

Hi EdSolero,
yes it is my flickr photo, i took it in 1992 along with the other b/w shots of former theatres on 42nd st and eighth ave that are in my flickr account, the quality isnt great as they are scanned from photos, i wish i had taken close-up photos.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on October 5, 2006 at 1:43 am

An article by Vincent Canby in the NY Times on 12/14/69 discusses notable events in the NYC movie scene for that Holiday season and makes mention of the Eros and Capri cinema in a short paragraph on Mrs. Chelly Wilson:

“Greek-born American producer, distibutor and exhibitor of what are known as ‘skin flicks.’ Two of her newest ventures are the Eighth Avenue minitheaters, the Capri (recent attractions: ‘Kiss My Analyst’ and ‘A Fruedian Thing’) and the Eros, which specializes in all-male films (‘Gay in Space’). Admission to the Capri is $4; to the Eros it’s $5.”

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on October 5, 2006 at 12:41 am

My mistake above. The permits for conversion to restaurant are 1996. That year pretty much jibes with the shutting down of all three porn theaters on this block front (Capri, Eros, Venus). Interestingly, all three have become restaurants.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on October 5, 2006 at 12:38 am

Some more info I found on the Eros (former Eros I)…

*A temporary C/O in June 1969 was issued for a 114-seat motion picture theater with projection booth on the mezzanine level. A final C/O follows on 12/5/69.

*An alteration permit is issued in November of 1997 to convert the space to a restaurant.

The building is now occupied by the Playwright Tavern and Act II Restaurant, whose website may be found right here including a color photo of the exterior.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on October 4, 2006 at 3:22 pm

Here’s a photo from the flickr.com website that’s a little soft and blurry but depicts the east side of 8th Avenue looking north from just below 45th Street. You can see the marquees for both the Venus and Eros Theaters (from right to left) between 45th and 46th Streets. There is a third marquee to the left of the Eros with a parking lot separating them… I think it’s the Capri. When you click on the “back to flickr photo page” link in the upper left corner, you’ll see the caption indicates “42nd st Venus and Strand theaters”… but I think that’s a misidentification. I can’t remember what that might have been except for the Capri.

Anyway, I think the account holder “woody1969” has posted here on CT before as “woody”. Maybe he can offer some clarification as to dates and anything else he knows about these theaters. If you scroll through the photo stream, he has a number of photos from the area including the Adonis and Richard Basciano’s Show Palace on Eighth and 43rd as well as the 42nd Street grind houses. Lot’s of fun.

AlAlvarez
AlAlvarez on September 15, 2006 at 5:15 am

Ed, I think the Mini was a converted storefront.

It operated in 1973-74 at 732 Seventh Avenue.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on September 15, 2006 at 2:35 am

Interesting article, RobertR. What is that 130-seat New Mini Cinema on Seventh and 47th, discussed just under the photo caption about halfway through the article? The old Mayfair/Demille occupied the northeast corner and I don’t recall there having been one on the southeast corner adjacent to the RKO Palace. I suppose it could have been across the street near the northwest corner of that intersection, but I only ever remember the Castro Convertible showroom and Playland arcade there… Do you think it refers to the Doll Theater which was on the same block as the Demille but closer to 48th? A C of O for that theater cites 160 seats, but the article’s 130 count might have been in error.

RobertR
RobertR on September 15, 2006 at 1:01 am

A 1969 NY Times story about the deluge of new mini cinemas

View link

AlAlvarez
AlAlvarez on May 1, 2006 at 8:43 am

The Eros 2 was indeed a separate theatre and it did later become the Venus.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on July 13, 2005 at 11:34 pm

Yes…Stud Farm in July, 1969. Outrageous, unheard-of admission price of $5.

RobertR
RobertR on June 15, 2005 at 1:30 am

Eros 2 is listed as 8th Ave near 45th St. I wonder if it was the Venus? Eros 2 was running straight porn.

RobertR
RobertR on June 13, 2005 at 1:04 pm

I think Eros 2 was at a seperate location, I will find out.

MagicLantern
MagicLantern on February 27, 2005 at 9:43 pm

Was this a twin theatre called the Eros 1 and 2? If so, there’s some footage of its marquees in a new filmed addendum to the revival of “Deep Throat”. Apparently the film itself was too short, so the releasing company filmed some reminiscing by adult film star Eric Edward to tack on when the film had ended.