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It’s curious that this house had such a short lifespan of just about 15 years, in a neighborhood that was fanatic about finding escape from the grueling Great Depression. The Apollo & the Charles remained opened well into the 1960"s.
Similar to a recent post on the Plaza, the Gramercy also served coffee in their tiny downstairs lounge. Rugoff attempted to elevate the moviegoing experience.
A very stately theatre with the original wraparound marquee. Riding on the elevated BMT #15 across Broadway from Williamsburg to ENY, afforded you a terrific view of all the major movie houses along that stretch. The RKO Bushwick was quite impressive especially since it was sited at an angle to Broadway, giving you better sightlines of the full structure.
I always favored the graceful lines of what was likely the original marquee. It’s replacement at a time that Rugoff was “upgrading” the marquees of several of his sites including the Avenue U in B'klyn, were stark & boxy.
Terrific promotion of turkeys & chickens as a giveaway. Must have been fresh poultry as frozen foods were not common then, and freezer space was miniscule.
Did this venue cater to the Czech population of the neighborhood in the early part of the 20th century?
Does anyone know how long the Cinema 5 organization managed the 72St.P?
Thought that they gave away chickens like they gave away dishes back then.
When the studio system was still robust.
Frequented the MH during the 60s when it was operated by Rugoff/Cinema 5. It often day dated with the Trans-Lux East and a B'way house usually the Astor, for mainstream United Artist product. Did see Bombolle there, a 3-part Italian film of 3 vignettes by noted directors, common at the time.
How did the 72nd St. Playhouse, an outlier venue between the Bloomingdale’s belt and the East 86th St. strip get to day & date the DeMille? No one expected Shaft to be a smash but did this AIT house see a surge in business during this run?
Bland and undistinguished. No comparison to the opulent features of its predecessor.
Any info on when the Walter Reade Organization began operating this theatre?
Pleasantly surprised to see the venerated Paris logo in today’s NYT print ad. Does this bode well for the venue’s future.
Print ads are confusing as NYT had the IFC Theatre as the only outlet screening this flick. Glad that the Paris has gotten a temporary reprieve, and that the Belasco has been impressed to showcase the Irishman. Sad state of film distribution that important films from Netflix have had to scrounge for prestige venues. Savvy marketers and distributors should take note as other worthy films are rolled out. These fiulms deserve to be treated as special events. Is there a future for the Paris in this role?
Is Ackerman the last of the breed of distributor/theatre owner who shaped the art house phenomena of the past half-century? Where are the heirs to Donald Rugoff, Walter Reade & Dan Talbot. These sadly missed titans presented product that not only forecasted important social trends but stimulated intellectual dialogue.
There are barely any theatre marquees to speak of. Whatever signage exists is bland and nondescript. There are recognizable logos such as AMC, but would any of these identifiers lure me into that particular movie house? Theatrefan made a valuable suggestion of the applications of LED as a replacement for neon. That could be quite exciting.
Had missed this posting when it first appeared but I too am impressed by Gigantor’s pic of the Echo. The surrounding shops give a clear sense of the simple life of that community. Confirming an earlier comment by John D, there was a strong Sicilian enclave that began to ebb in the 1950’s as the Hispanics began to emerge. Curiously, there were also wood-frame dilapidated tenements that were exclusively for the Negro population in the neighborhood. The various ethnic groups appeared to have coexisted well.
Back in the 1950’s it may have shown Spanish double features.
I knew that she was popular but never realized that Garbo’s films would fill this huge theatre.
Would that be the theatre manager on the left orDon Rugoff’s father?
Quite an awesome display of outdoor showmanship, possibly surpassing the product on screen.
What a bizzare double feature, Can see the teens on a Saturday bight walking out/making out when WOTT comes on the screen.
Funny coincidence that you mention Camelot tonight as I spent New Years Eve eons ago at the Strand.
Remember this site when it was a boarded up warehouse. No idea behind its famed past. The opening of the Sunshine was consistent with the rapid transformation and gentrification of the LES which caused shockwaves across Williamsburg & Bushwick. Will miss its neon frontage.