124 S. Tryon Street,
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Previously operated by: Paramount Pictures Inc.
Previous Names: New Imperial Theatre
The Imperial Theatre opened on March 31, 1919 with Marguerite Clark in “Mrs. Wiggs of The Cabbage Patch”. It was Charlotte’s top movie theatre until the larger and more ornate Carolina Theatre opened in 1927. A fire gutted the theatre building in 1931, leaving only the four walls standing. These were retained in the rebuild and it reopened on February 18, 1935 as Charlotte’s only Atmospheric style theatre, the New Imperial Theatre, with Claudette Colbert in “The Gilded Lily”. The rather narrow auditorium had a balcony and the side walls were decorated in a Spanish Colonial style. Overhead was a blue plaster sky with electric stars and projected clouds.
The Imperial Theatre was operated by Paramount Pictures Inc. through their subsidiary H.F. Kincey in the 1940’s. It had a successful run showing mostly first run movies for several decades until the opening of the Park Terrace Theatre in the suburbs forced its closing in 1964. The building sat empty for a few years and was torn down in the late-1960’s.
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