Grand Illusion Cinema

1403 NE 50th Street,
Seattle, WA 98105

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Related Websites

Grand Illusion Cinema (Official)

Additional Info

Functions: Movies (Classic), Movies (Independent)

Phone Numbers: Box Office: 206.523.3935
Manager: 206.523.3935

Nearby Theaters

Grand  Illusion 1973

Tucked up behind a bookstore in the University District, the Grand Illusion shows a variety of films – foreign, classic, independent, etc. It opened in 1970. It seats about 70 patrons. It was a tiny screening room in the 1930s.

Contributed by Katie Mac

Recent comments (view all 12 comments)

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on May 10, 2005 at 10:15 am

Other cinemas I thought of that were named after movies are Smultronstället (Wild Strawberries) in Stockholm, named after the Ingmar Bergman movie, and Cinema Paradiso in Fort Lauderdale, named after the Italian movie or else the theatre portrayed in it.

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on May 10, 2005 at 10:35 am

David Kleiler used to run a regular series called “The Rear Window” in various rented spaces around Boston.

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on June 26, 2005 at 2:45 am

And, in fact, there was indeed a “Ben-Hur Drive-In” in Indiana…also a “New Merry Widow Theatre” in St. Louis, possibly named after the operetta rather than the Ernst Lubitsch/Jeanette MacDonald film.

kencmcintyre on April 8, 2006 at 3:14 pm

I’m sure the late Mr. Powell and Ms. Loy would appreciate their films running alongside of a classic like Pootie Tang.

Davidfox on February 14, 2007 at 2:43 pm

For many years the auditorium space was occupied by a dentist’s office. The Grand Illusion was originally The Movie House, the first cinema in what became Randy Finley’s Seven Gables circuit, now part of Landmark Theaters. The current name came from Paul Doyle, who ran the cinema for 20 years before selling to a non-profit. He now owns the Columbia City Cinema in Seattle’s Rainier Valley.

CSWalczak on July 16, 2010 at 7:03 pm

According to this article, the theater is not doing well financially: View link

TLSLOEWS on July 16, 2010 at 8:56 pm

Well it is a Grand Illusion.

Grand Illusion Cinema
Grand Illusion Cinema on February 16, 2013 at 6:56 pm

We’re doing fine now, thanks!

neeb on March 13, 2013 at 12:30 am

A bit of history as to how everything got started.

Wonder if they’ll play Inadmissible Evidence when they hit 50 years?

David_Schneider on November 27, 2017 at 11:03 am

Wow, nice article from the front page of the November 26th, 2017 Seattle Times about several of Seattle’s historic movie houses starting with the Grand Illusion, including why we go to the movies!:

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