Comments from GaryParks

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GaryParks
GaryParks commented about El Rey Salinas 1945 auditorium on Oct 11, 2019 at 10:40 pm

The patterns shown in this photo are original. In the late 40s, the auditorium was repainted much more simply. Tones of light tan and very pale green were painted over most surfaces, with gold stripe accents just along the edges of the sculpted streamlined curves on the pilasters. The ventilation grilles—originally covered in aluminum leaf, were painted the antique gold most people remember. A section of the silver has just been uncovered today as I’m writing this. The large flat side bays—where the stepped patterns are in the photo, were painted with the tropical women and foliage others have mentioned in comments.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Auditorium ceiling on Sep 14, 2019 at 1:50 am

Correction, photo: 1942.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Garden of Allah Theatre on May 7, 2019 at 5:57 pm

Development of the site has begun. The church (theatre) building has been sealed-up and stabilized, to protect it while the new structures are built around it.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Centre Theatre on Nov 30, 2018 at 7:20 pm

A correction to the new bit of information appended by someone else to Tillmany’s original Overview on the Centre: The Centre was never the Aztec. It did open as the Round-Up, however.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Granada Theatre on Sep 3, 2018 at 7:14 am

This is actually the box office of the Granada on Market St., which later became the SF Paramount.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Bay Theatre on Jul 27, 2018 at 4:03 am

The best way to get really accurate information on when the Bay (Beach) opened and reopened under Fox would be to check the B'Hend-Kaufmann Collection of the Herrick Library of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. I mentioned the Herrick Library images to him some time ago in an email—and he has posted images which I remember from that collection, or else identical images from another collection. Anyway, in addition to photos of the Beach/Bay, there is complete paperwork about the theatre’s sale, remodeling and reopening, including correspondence from Fox West Coast Theatres. It may indeed be true that it opened in 1945. But there was some information in the file dating from the 1930s. Perhaps that is when it was first planned.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Bay Theatre on Jul 27, 2018 at 3:53 am

This is one of two fixtures which were removed years ago from the Bay’s auditorium, when the organ chamber was built in front of the old screen. It is in a private collection currently (not mine), who’s owner very thoroughly restored it. He told me of having to go through a lot of steps to get rid of the corrosion on the finish, caused by the salt air of Seal Beach.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Bay Theatre on Jul 27, 2018 at 3:40 am

This is the interior of the Loyola Theatre. At some point I posted this photo elsewhere, to give some idea of the narrow murals that were in the Bay Theatre, over the exit doors flanking the screen. They were similar, though simpler, to those shown here.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Bay Theatre on Jul 27, 2018 at 3:37 am

This is the Bay in Morro Bay. Nice photo though!

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about EXIT Sign on Jun 8, 2018 at 12:17 am

Having been on the salvage team at the Midtown before its gutting, I can confirm that this was the exact design of the 1920s EXIT signs there. By the time we were in there, all of them but one were badly damaged, except two. One of these was obstructed by what appeared to be a gas line, and the other was unobstructed, and we removed it. Light glowed through the letters, and up onto the wall from the “bowl” of the plaster fixture.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Regent Theatre on Dec 13, 2017 at 1:29 am

My friend, theatre historian Jack Tillmany, tells me that he saw “Bell, Book, and Candle” at the Regent on April 12, 1959. He still has a record book of the movies he’s seen, where, and when.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Ritz Theatre on Dec 4, 2017 at 3:12 am

According to Jack Tillmany’s extensive, and carefully researched, listings of theatre opening dates, the Ritz opened on Sept. 7, 1949.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Market Street Cinema on Oct 14, 2017 at 12:23 am

During demolition, during preparations to salvage the “Grauman’s Imperial Theater” stained glass window in the lobby, we went down into the under-stage basement several times, and saw the body outline on the floor, and there were dozens of bullet holes in the fire door at the opposite end of the basement room. we took photos of the room, but nothing extraordinary showed up in our images. With the noise of the Bobcats and backhoe above us, there was no real sense of creepiness, let alone terror. It would have been interesting to have been in the same space when the theatre was abandoned—before demolition began.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Park Theatre on Aug 30, 2017 at 8:09 am

The theatre has been closed for several years now and does not appear well cared for. the two retail spaces flanking the entrance are in operation.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Century at Pacific Commons and XD on Aug 30, 2017 at 8:00 am

The vertical sign on this theatre was heavily influenced, in color and general design, by the late 1940s vertical of the Millbrae Theatre, Millbrae.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Midtown Theatre on Jul 27, 2017 at 9:16 pm

Thanks Ken, for this photo! I saw it from my car when it looked like this, but I had no camera with me. So glad this brief moment in the theatre’s existence was captured on film.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Fox Bayshore Drive-In on Mar 6, 2017 at 5:34 pm

The photo was originally taken by San Jose journalist and photographer, Shirlie Montgomery.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Sonoma County, CA - Drive-in movie theaters gone but not forgotten in Sonoma County on Feb 16, 2017 at 5:56 am

I remember riding by the Sono-Marin at night with my folks, and not saying a THING as I tried to catch what was on the screen as we whizzed along.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Avenal Theater on Jan 20, 2017 at 6:55 am

I have been by the Avenal a couple of times in the past year, and it seems that they are no longer showing movies, just hosting occasional events for the town, such as meetings.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Atlantic Theater on Jan 20, 2017 at 4:53 am

The top part of the tower was preserved, and mounted onto the new library building, which has been completed. I do not know if any other features of the theatre were incorporated anywhere else in the new building.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Richmond, San Francisco, CA - After Decade-Plus Wait, Richmond's Historic Alexandria Theater May See New Life on Dec 15, 2016 at 6:19 am

I’m actually quite impressed with this design idea. Not all neighborhood theatres can remain theatres, and this concept preserves more of the interior than most such projects.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Columbia Theatre on Nov 9, 2016 at 8:50 pm

This is truly a baffling image! Someone has digitally added Fox-Skouras style ornament to a vintage photo of the interior of the Columbia Theatre. I have never heard of a Skouras remodel being done that far East, but I suppose it’s not impossible. Montana has at least one. Question is—is this someone’s recent photographic pipe dream, or did this remodel actually happen?

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Goodwill Store (former Lux Theatre) on Oct 11, 2016 at 7:46 pm

Note also the remnant of terrazzo sidewalk in the entry, and to the left of the entry, more stainless steel cladding, with a window, where there was once a little pizza stand, “LUX PIZZA,” which served patrons both on the the street and entering the theatre.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Goodwill Store (former Lux Theatre) on Oct 11, 2016 at 7:46 pm

Note also the remnant of terrazzo sidewalk in the entry, and to the left of the entry, more stainless steel cladding, with a window, where there was once a little pizza stand, “LUX PIZZA,” which served patrons both on the the street and entering the theatre.

GaryParks
GaryParks commented about Waterbury, CT - Tour given of historic Waterbury theater on Oct 9, 2016 at 8:14 pm

I can’t help but wonder if any bits of the extensive recollections from my father of attending this theatre when he was a young boy in the 1920s—which I wrote down, and have been added to the theatres archives—have made it into the tour spiel at the Palace.