Odeon Theatre

1473 Queen Street West,
Toronto, ON M6R 1A6

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Showing 13 comments

CSWalczak on January 12, 2011 at 9:11 am

There is an interior photo of the Odeon’s interior on this webpage (scroll down to see it): View link

SilentToronto on October 24, 2010 at 1:56 pm

Hey guys, here’s a photo of the Odeon located at 1473 Queen St. W when it was known as the Regal: http://wp.me/pYW3L-jO

lovebldgs on September 1, 2010 at 7:43 am

I research buildings and the Odeon Theatre in the City Archives photograph was 1558 Queen St. W. and first appeared in the Toronto City Directory in 1915 (so it was built in 1914). The building is still there and is now Harvest Fresh Farms grocery store.

CSWalczak on January 22, 2010 at 10:00 am

Yes, thanks; that is the picture. The Toronto Archives has a new numbering system and I too have been updating links as I find broken ones. However, as I noted in the original comment, I do not think it is a picture of the Odeon that is the subject of this particular listing based on the address that can been seen, and that building looks far too small to have seated nearly 800 people.

scruffywilber on January 22, 2010 at 9:51 am

I beleive that this is the same photo that CWalczak posted on June 4 2008 and unfortunately the link no longer works.

A lot of the links to the “City of Toronto Archives” no longer work.


CSWalczak on April 8, 2009 at 11:04 am

They have since corrected that as well.

telliott on April 8, 2009 at 9:45 am

Perfect. Now if they could only change the Odeon Danforth back to “single screen”.

CSWalczak on April 6, 2009 at 9:51 pm

Tim, I am going to request that the moderators change the entry for this page to “Odeon Theater” and create a new page entry for the Odeon Lakeshore (aka Biltmore New Toronto) and that they move move Chuck 1231’s picture link to the new page.

telliott on April 6, 2009 at 8:39 am

Ok, for the reccord….the picture is of the Odeon Lakeshore in New Toronto…it was formerly known as the Biltmore New Toronto until December of 1963 when Odeon bought 3 former Biltmore theatres…the Savoy downtown became the Odeon Coronet…the Biltmore Weston, became the Odeon Weston and the Biltmore New Toronto became the Odeon Lakeshore because of it’s location on Lakeshore Blvd. I went there several times and it closed with the name of Odeon Lakeshore. It is now offices. I’ve lived in Toronto my whole life as CWalczak says and remember many of these theatres very well. There was an Odeon theatre on Queen St W in the Parkdale area of Toronto but that was part of the 20th Century theatre chain.

CSWalczak on July 9, 2008 at 6:24 pm

This theatre appears to have also been known as the Queen.

CSWalczak on June 20, 2008 at 10:18 am

I am convinced that this theatre’s entry should not have been listed as the Lakeshore and should be changed to Odeon Theatre.

Mr. Tim Elliott, who often posts on this site and is either a Toronto native or some one who is very familiar with Toronto and its theatres, says he has no recollection of the Odeon Theatre on Queen Street West ever being renamed the Lakeshore. He has suggested that this information, (which came from the Rivest List), is in error, quite possibly a mangling of the information surrounding the fact that around 1963, the Odeon circuit acquired the former Biltmore Theatre on Lakeshore in New Toronto and renamed it the Odeon Lakeshore. I know think this is more than just a possibility.

A few weeks ago, I had a conversation with a gentleman from Toronto who also seemed quite well-informed about Toronto’s theatres; he recalls that the reason that famous Carlton Theatre was renamed that from its original name of the Odeon Toronto was that people confused the Odeon Toronto with the Odeon on Queen Street West (the QSW Odeon never was a part of the Odeon chain â€" its opening well pre-dates the formation of the Odeon Theatres circuit in Canada). Now I see that basically the same information is also on the Rivest entry for the Carlton Theatre and that the renaming occurred in 1956 or thereabouts. It is well-known that the renaming did occur.

If the Odeon Toronto became the Carlton (or Odeon Carlton) in 1956, the Odeon on QSW would seem to have little need to change its name to something like the Lakeshore in 1968 which seems an somewhat unlikely name given its location (though I suppose any theatre in Toronto could have been called the Lakeshore), unless perhaps there was real or threatened litigation over use of the Odeon name.

I am urging that the entry for this theatre be changed to ‘Odeon Theatre’ and that the introductory information read: This theatre opened in 1931 and closed in 1980. It was not a part of the Canadian Odeon circuit; it opened well-prior to the formation of that chain.

CSWalczak on June 4, 2008 at 8:03 am

After doing some additional research, I am just about convinced that there were two Odeon Theatres on Queen Street West at different times.

This picture of an Odeon Theatre from 1919 is from the Toronto Archives:

View link

According to the information there, the address was 1558 Queen Street West. (However the number above the door at the left of the photograph appears to be 158; perhaps street re-numbering later occurred).

However according to both Enright’s and Rivest’s listings for the Lakeshore/Odeon (which Rivest says opened in 1931) the address was 1473 Queen Street West which would put it probably at least ten blocks away and on the other side of the street.

Looking at the 1919 picture, the building looks rather small to me to have housed 752 seats which is what Enright and Rivest both state was the capacity of the Lakeshore/Odeon. I am guessing that this 1919 Odeon (which looks like a nickelodeon theatre) was gone by the time the Lakeshore/Odeon opened.