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When I lived in NYC in the 1960s I used to go to the Beacon frequently – it still showed films then. Although a bit run-down, it was still a beautiful film palace, one of the last in the city. It is heartening to learn of its restoration. Alas, too bad about the splendid Broadway Paramount – another beautiful theater converted to offices. Too bad they could not have restored that one also!
I lived in NYC from 1962 to 1969, on West 76th Street, and it was a pleasant neighborhood. They were just constructing Lincoln Center. I visited the Beacon and it was not a “dump” just a bit run down, but still beautiful. I am so pleased that the West Side is coming back. Places like the splendid Ansonia are being restored to their former glory, and many of the brownstone rooming houses are once again single-family homes selling for $3 – $5 million. (You could have bought them in the 1960s for about $150,000 – wish I had!)
I am not sure about this, but I read somewhere that the house box-office record for the Fox, when it was still showing films, was set by 20th’s THE ROBE. Anyone know the facts?
I took the St. Louis Fox tour in 2009. The guide said the current capacity was 4,000 seats after the restoration. That is still a huge theater. The place has been well-restored and is well-maintained. I would recommend the tour to any theater buff! (Alas, think what the San Francisco Fox would be like today if it had been preserved!)