Monumental Cinema Teatro & Satellite
Praca duque de Saldanha,
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Architects: Raul Rodrigues Lima
Styles: Art Deco
Previous Names: Monumental Cinema Teatro
Plans were approved in 1946 to build this ‘monumental’ twin Cinema & Teatro, the work of architect Raul Rodrigues Lima. The Teatro with 1,086 seats was opened on 8th November 1951 with Laura Alves starring in the operetta “The Three Waltzes”. The Cinema had 1,967 seats and opened with Burt Lancaster & Virginia Mayo in “The Flame and the Arrow”.
The building took up a whole city block and seating in the large Cinema auditorium was on orchestra level with two balconies above. The Cinema was equipped to screen 70mm movies and films such as “Ben Hur”, “My Fair Lady”, “West Side Story” and “2001: A Space Odessy” all had long runs here. The Teatro hosted concerts by singers Charles Aznavour, Sylvie Vartan & Rita Pavone.
On 25th February 1971 a small 208 seat cinema named Satellite was opened on the top floor of the building with Romy Schneider in “Les choses de la vie”.
By the early-1980’s the building was playing to small audiences and it was decided it should be demolished and was not worthy of retaining. There was great pressure put on the ‘powers that be’ to save the building from destruction. All this came to nothing and the last show at the Teatro was “Pai Pre-se” starring Laura Alves, which began its run on 30th September 1982. The Teatro screened its final film on 27th November 1983 and all equipment was removed. The building was demolished in 1984.
The current 4 screen Monumental Cinema with its shops & offices, located at Edifico Monumental, Praca Duque de Saldanha is built on the site of the Monumental Cinema Teatro. This new cinema screens independent and European art house movies.
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