08 November 2007

Tracking Brooklyn's Old Movie Theaters

from Curbed:

The "Subway Circuit" isn't something that is going to go wrong tonight with some signals to screw up the 4 Train. It's what the Brooklyn theater circuit used to be called. There were so many at one time that the Times once called Fulton Street and Flatbush Avenue "a regional attraction to rival Times Square." Windsor Terrace blogger Icky in Brooklyn offers a trip down memory lane to places like the Albee Theater, the Paramount, the Flatbush and the Oceana. Plus, updates on their fate: the Oceana in Brighton Beach is now a Russian nightclub/dinner theatre, the Paramount is the gym at Long Island University, the Albee fell for the Albee Square Mall which is falling for the big City Point highrise and mall. And the Flatbush's stage is a carpet store. The fate of another Brooklyn landmark theater, the Loew's Kings on Flatbush Avenue, meanwhile, is still up in the air.
The Subway Circuit {Icky in Brooklyn}
Loews Kings Theater: Is There Hope? {Brooklyn Junction}

Whilst researching my addendum to this post, I stumbled upon a wonderful website called Cinema Treasures. Launched in December 2000, Cinema Treasures is a groundbreaking website devoted to movie theater preservation and awareness. Utilising the community-building capabilities of the world wide internetweb, Cinema Treasures unites movie theater owners and enthusiasts in a common cause—to save the last remaining movie palaces across the country. Word.

Now playing in theater 2: Overpriced Blank T-shirts. For months, the marquee outside the shuttered Flatbush Avenue Pavillion theater said "Aliens Mourn Waning Fashion."

Opened in June of 1927, the Marboro served Bensonhurst for 75 years. It was closed by United Artists Theatres on July 2, 2002 and demolished in May of 2007. I saw The Doors movie there.

The old Loews Oriental on 86th Street. It's now a ramshackle Marshalls. Saw a lot of movies at this jernt back in the day. Never found anything good at the Marshalls though.

Below is/was 7120 3rd Avenue, "The Bay Ridge Theater". It is now a McDonalds downstairs and a NYSC gym upstairs. For years after they stopped showing movies it was a Bingo Hall and I think they did Golden Gloves there once and a while, too.

Unfortunately, I couldn't find a picture of the old Fortway on 67th and Fort Hamilton Parkway. When it opened in 1928, the theatre had a beautiful atmospheric interior. Electric stars used to twinkle on the dark blue ceiling. The Fortway originally had a Kilgen theatre organ. There was a small stage in front of the proscenium. The theatre was divided into a multiplex in the 1970's and turned to shit in the years that followed. The Fortway was famous for the cheap movies in the summer because the AC wasn't working. The Fortway was closed by Loews Cineplex in June of 2005. It is now a mammoth Chinese supermarket where the sidewalk is violently hosed down bi-hourly.


Anonymous said...

there was a movie house on 13th ave and 71st in brooklyn that they turned into a bohack then into a local grocery store than a genovese drug store anyone know the name of this movie house

Anonymous said...

I believe that the theatre to which you are referring on 71st and 13 ave was he Endicott

Anonymous said...

Does anyone have picture of the Paradise Theater on 28th St and 4th ave in Brooklyn. I saw Rodan, King Kong, Elvis, the song of Bernadette. It later became Paradise bowling lanes. I had a picture of the theatre which I lost. I know some one must have one. I believe it was found in public records. I don't know where.

kenny1948 said...

Growing up in Brooklyn in the fifties, I went to many of these theatres. It's sad to see what has happened to them, especially the Kings on Flatbush Ave. It was a beautiful theatre. I still remember looking up at the enormous chandelier that hung in the center of the auditorium. Thinking "what if that thing ever fell down", it was huge. It seems most of the movie theatres I remember, are all gone now. Sad, very sad.

bigbih68 said...

make me want 2 drop a tear... i know we have 2 move on in life but can i keep something from my past??? the kings needs 2 b brought back 2 its original form...can somebody with money makes this happen???