Fox Theatre

660 Peachtree Street NE,
Atlanta, GA 30365

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Showing 51 - 75 of 126 comments

LOVETHATBOB on June 22, 2010 at 4:54 am




William on March 26, 2010 at 6:03 pm

At the time of it’s closing back in 1975 the projection booth was equipped with:

2- Motiograph 35mm Projectors Model aa
2- Ashcraft Super Cinex Arc lamphouses Type 160s (ser#1174/1175)
2- RCA Photo phone sound head (optical)
2- Westrex Sound head (magnetic)
2- Motiograph bases

Motiograph (Altec) Stereophonic

2-CinemaScope lenses (ser# RR7797 / RR7314)
6-Standard lenses (ser# 14 7509/ 14 7520/ RE 4916/ RE 4925/ and two without ser #)

This info came out of a book dealing with the sale of the Fox Theatre Transactions with ABC Theatre Holdings/ Georgia State Theatres/ United Theatres Enterprises Inc/ Southern Bell Telephone from the mid 70’s.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on December 17, 2009 at 3:21 am

LAST REGULAR movie to play at this ABC SOUTHEASTERN THEATRE was Richard Burton in the lousy THE KLANSMAN rated R. This might have been posted up the line,but i never noticed it when reading all these great experiences.

DaveNewton on December 9, 2009 at 9:27 pm

Easily the best theater experience in Atlanta, what a beautifully designed building. I saw a number of films there in the sixties and early seventies, and many concerts there later on.
The last movie I saw there was the Rolling Stones' Shine A Light, on my 47th birthday. The keyboard player for the Stones, Chuck Leavell, was there. Before the movie, he talked some and gave a slideshow, and then performed a couple of songs, playing piano and singing (he wrapped up with a Bo Diddle medley, who had just passed away). The Stones love playing the Fox, and Keith Richards kicked off his 1988 solo tour there. Great theater, I hope they continue showing films ther forever!

ERD on September 16, 2009 at 4:49 pm

Uniquely beautiful! I am so glad this theatre has survived.

Don Lewis
Don Lewis on August 9, 2009 at 2:58 am

A view of the Fox Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia.

missmelbatoast on July 24, 2009 at 6:14 pm

These 1971 photos comes courtesy of LIFE,
View link

Cliff Carson
Cliff Carson on July 10, 2009 at 10:36 am

First film I ever saw at the FOX was SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS. I remember it like it was yesterday. What a movie going experience that was for a kid. We always sat in the balcony.

Other films I remember seeing there are:

THE WIZARD OF OZ (children’s matinee run)
THE ADVENTURES OF TOM SAWYER (another MGM children’s matinee)

View link

Mike Durrett
Mike Durrett on May 14, 2009 at 7:36 pm

Well, gee, um, thanks, Stan. Here are the specific, permanent links to my trilogy of articles on working the projection booth at the Fox.

“100 Things About Me #170: Fabulous Fun"
View link

“Fox: In the Box"
View link

“Back to the Fab: Bygones With ‘The Wind’"
View link

Looking at your impressive research, it would appear the last movie I projected to the general public at the Fox before my recent comeback for “Gone With the Wind” was — ta da! — “Gone With the Wind” in 1998. I did show a private function screening of the original “War of the Worlds” in 35mm around that time, however.

Of course, you and I and others showed the English translation “supertitles” slides alongside the live Atlanta Opera performances for years to come.

Oh, that employees' 10 cents per cup coffee machine you mentioned (above) was 35 cents a couple of weeks ago. So much for historic preservation at the Fox!

StanMalone on May 12, 2009 at 6:58 pm

A past, present, and probably future projectionist at the Fox offers these comments on the recent Gone With The Wind screenings:

Scan down to the entries for May 7, May 1, and April 25, 2009.

Don K.
Don K. on April 26, 2009 at 7:20 am


Samuel Augustus Jennings
Samuel Augustus Jennings on April 13, 2009 at 3:48 pm

When “Gone With The Wind” debuted at the Fox Theater in Atlanta in 1939 Hattie McDaniel could not attend because she was black. In 1940 McDaniel became the first black to win an Oscar (for Best Supporting Actress) but at the Awards ceremony in the Cocoanut Grove ballroom at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles “Mammy” and her escort were seated at their own table – apart from the rest of the audience.

When I was a student at Morehouse College in Atlanta from 1962 to 1966 I caught the Fair Street trolley bus and ventured across town to the Fox whenever my meager allowance would permit. Theaters and other public facilities in Atlanta desegregated during this volatile period of sit-ins, jail-ins, demonstrations, marches, and racial violence. The Fox was the ultimate escape and I marveled at the elegant surroundings like “Sam in Wonderland” as I roamed the hushed backlit Holywood cathedral.

I rarely get to Atlanta these days, but I am grateful the Fox has been preserved and recycled. Mid-town was always a vibrant area bustling with energy and remains one of my favorite neighborhoods, thanks to Atlanta’s gays who have done a lot to rejuvenate this southern oasis. I hope it is still alive and well.

themexsays on December 6, 2008 at 11:42 am

To whom it may concern,

My name is Robert Napier. I am doing a documentary about Atlanta theaters. I am in search of locating an abandoned theatre and using the documentary as a catalyst to support renovations to the existing theatre. We are also looking for Atlanta locals who are between the ages of 40 & 70 who have exciting stories about their cinema experience at the time.

For more information, please visit:
or e-mail me at

mwaites on August 26, 2008 at 9:14 pm

I wonder if anyone here can help me with a date?

I attended a “Planet of the Apes Marathon” at the Fox in about 1974 -
ALL of the Planet of the Apes movies back to back.

Are there any records of that?


HowardBHaas on August 15, 2008 at 3:15 pm

Yes, it is an interesting and inspiring list.

Patsy on August 1, 2008 at 5:59 pm

I just learned through a friend in Atlanta that the Fox Theatre has formed the Fox Theatre Institute to help restore/repair other theatres throughout the State of Georgia. The theatres are as follows: Rylander in Americus, Imperial in Augusta, Holly in Dahlonega, Gem in Calhoun, Grand Opera House in Macon, Springer Opera House in Columbus, DeSoto in Rome, Strand in Marietta, The Ritz in Thomaston, The Ritz in Brunswick, Emma Kelly in Statesboro, Douglass in Macon, Cox Capitol in Macon, Morton in Athens and The Grand in Fitzgerald. The Atlanta Constitution article was in the July 17, 2008 paper and the title was “A Ticket To Restoration…Atlanta’s Fox launches initiative to help other historic theaters”. I, personally, applaud the Fox!

RobertEndres on July 21, 2008 at 3:46 pm

For someone who claims not to be from the technical side of the field you are very knowledgeable about projection conditions at the Fox and very good at explaining them in an understandable way. The Fox is lucky to have you and your chief projectionist (I ran into a similar combination in Champaign, Illinois last year at the Virginia Theatre which has been restored and run by the Parks Department. It is the site of Roger Ebert’s “Ebertfest” each year, and the venue has a manager and a projectionist that take great pride in the theatre. The 70mm booth is one of the best maintained and equipped I’ve seen. It’s good to know that there are people like you tending our restored classic theatres.)

According to Martin Hart’s American Widescreen Museum, there was an optical soundtrack version of “Ben Hur” that was reased which was slightly letterboxed on anamporphic 35mm film to preserve the 2.55/2.76 ratio. He has a picture of the clip on his site. My laserdisc version of “Ben Hur” was also 2.76 aspect ratio at a time when letterboxing was fairly rare even on laserdisc which more or less created the concept.

The Martin Cinerama mention brings up something that has begun to disturb me. The most impressive of the Cinerama/D-150 theatres, which were as much a symbol of their time as the Fox is of its time, are all disappearing. It’s as if we’ve learned something about preservation, but only consider the oldest examples of something worthy of preservation. I was surprised when I found that until Bob Harris started focusing on some of the 70mm Roadshow epics, that spectacular boxoffice successes of my generation were endangered. (At one point when I was at the Hall, I heard that Fox had misplaced the 65mm negative of “The Sound of Music”. They’ve since used it for the DVD release, and the studios are starting, thanks to ancillary markets, to be more aware of the value of their libraries.) Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to extend to theatres. I worry the great examples of S.Charles Lee’s theatres will all be gone, since they were built specifically for movie use and didn’t have the stage facilities of the Fox and Music Hall which make them suitable for other performing arts.

The best and most effective sites for large screen presentation of the type Mr. Wade refers to above weren’t the theatres that were adapted for them such as the Rivoli in New York and Eitel’s Palace in Chicago, but rather the Martin and Cooper Cineramas, and the U.A. and River Oaks D-150’s. Of those, almost the only survivors are the Seattle Cinerama and the Dome in L.A. Someday we may look back and regret the demolishing of those sites, even though not as grand, as we now do the Roxy in New York.

StanMalone on July 19, 2008 at 4:47 pm


First let me say that I have enjoyed your posts on the Ziegfeld and RCMH pages of this site. I need to say that the technical side of this business is not really my field. Having started out my theatre days downstairs, and later in management, this site, especially the Ziegfeld page which has turned into something of a blog on showmanship in general, is more in line with my interests.

Your Ben-Hur write up reminded me of something that I had known about but did not think to consider when this subject came up. As I remember the story, Ben-Hur was filmed in 2.76 to 1 but the action was centered within the frame in something like 2.55 to 1 so that the theatres of the day could show it without cropping out anything important. Sort of an early version of what I understand Super Panavision to be. If my understanding of that is correct then I guess I owe Mr. Wade an apology since it is possible that he did indeed see an earlier screening of Ben-Hur in the wider 2.55 version. There are a couple of reasons that this is possible.

First is the way the curtain and masking operate. Instead of the local megaplex method of having someone in the booth hitting a button to move the masking back and forth (or up and down as the case may be) to one of two preset positions, the masking at the Fox is set by stagehands pulling the ropes. This allows the masking to be set to accommodate even the smallest variables in the size of the image. Second is the fact that the head projectionist at the Fox, who has been there since that first showing 30 years ago, is a true perfectionist. Before each show, he makes sure that the side and top masking is set to expose every possible inch of screen surface. So, if the image on the print was greater than 2.35 to 1, I am sure that the masking marks were set at the points needed to show every bit of it. Also, the Fox has had several screens over the past 30 years, the first of which, like the projectors, was the refugee from the Loew’s Grand. It might have had different dimensions and been slightly wider than the ones that followed which were measured to fit the layout of the Fox.

As for your visit to the Fox booth, that must have been in the fall of 1974. The Fox was still a grind movie house in those days but would occasionally cancel an evening for live shows in an effort to keep the doors open. Those projectors are long gone. If you want to wade through my post from last year, that story is in there, somewhere. That was during my theatre managing days and was long before my days of working in the Fox booth.

Your comment on the Turner letterboxing story reminds me that there was a VHS release during the 80’s that was pan and scan except for the race which was letterboxed. I never actually saw it but have heard several people mention it so it is probably true.

Your mention of the Martin Cinerama brings back good memories as it was my favorite of all the theatres I worked in, even if I was only an usher working my way through college. It was located only a couple of blocks from the Fox, operated under several names over the years, and is listed on this site as the Atlanta Theatre. When Martin renovated it for Cinerama they put in the 146 degree ribbon screen. I never saw three screen Cinerama there, but did see numerous 70MM presentations using the projectors that were installed starting with Mad Mad World. I regret to say that the theatre now resides in the landfill and the site now serves as a parking lot.

RobertEndres on July 18, 2008 at 9:05 pm

They did. The father of the public relations director at Radio City when I was there managed the Fox and I guess became an exec for the circuit that ran it. Patricia always said that he was the one that put CinemaScope in the Fox over the initial objections of higher management. The standard was for a curved screen at the time. That curve is always a problem for theatres that do stage shows and have to fly the sheet. It kept Radio City from showing CinemaScope for a year after its development because the depth of the curve would have eliminated at least a couple of the fly lines used for scenery in the stage show. In essence a frame would have to be built around the whole screen to stabilize it and provide fly points, and that means giving up line set space.

A big curved Todd-AO screen would look great, but if you check out the Rivoli N.Y. page for the last couple of weeks, you’ll find a number of negative comments about what the installation of U. A.’s D-150 did to the classic architecture. Purists object (with good reason in many cases) about what those screens cost in terms of keeping a theatre’s unique design, as with the Egyptian in Hollywood. I liked those screens, and being much younger at the time, didn’t mind what they had done to the structure. Now I would say, “Fine”, but only if the screen could be removed at the end of a run and the theatre retain its unique features. Judging from what StanMalone said, they would still have to kill a number of rows of seats in the orchestra under the balcony or the height would be restricted. (Some of that would be done automatically by placing a booth at the back of the orchestra under the balcony .) I believe Atlanta had a Martin Cinerama at one time, and that would be a more appropriate venue for Todd-AO or D-150 had it been saved since those formats were a product of that time, and as has been pointed out on the Rivoli page, were better adapted to achieve the effect you’re looking for. Disney’s restoration of the Paramount into the El Capitan shows how great those theatres looked when the wrap around curtains were taken down. The Atlanta Fox is glorious as is — we’re so lucky it was saved.

terrywade on July 18, 2008 at 7:43 pm

Thanks REndres**Can you imagine how a BIG curved Todd-AO or D-150 screen would look coming out of the huge stage with the booth moved downstairs with a new 70mm print shown and wrap a round curtins. Seems to me the Fox had a semi curved Cinemascope screen at one time? Now It’s just flat as they raise it for stage shows.

RobertEndres on July 18, 2008 at 7:08 pm

Terry Wade: There are a couple of things about “Ben Hur” that may have affected how you felt about the width of the image you saw, and StanMalone can probably verify them. “Ben Hur” was shot in MGM’s proprietary process Camera 65, which was an anamorphic 65mm process. Thus as with CinemaScope, the image was squeezed slightly on the 65mm film. Normal 70mm release prints have an aspect ratio of 2.21:1 which is less than the Scope print you saw at the Fox, but Camera 65 with its squeeze had a 2.76:1 ratio which was the widest of the 35 or 70mm formats. As Stan mentioned above, the sightlines at the Fox under the balcony limit the height of the picture. Thus if you had seen a Camera 65 70mm print projected there, the screen would have been much wider side to side than the 2.35 print you saw. It’s doubtful that the 70mm “Ben Hur” prints today are anamorphic, since the lenses to show them aren’t available (I did have one 70mm reel of the Camera 65 “Ben Hur” to use as a test reel at Radio City, and was always perplexed by the slight squeeze in the image.) The original 35mm prints were 4 track magnetic stereo, and had a 2.55:l ratio. You could well have seen one of those at the Fox, and it too would have been wider than the 35mm print with optical track they just showed. If they do strike a new 70mm print for the 50th Anniversary, they could keep the original ratio without the squeeze by “letterboxing” the image on the 70mm frame although the image quality wouldn’t be quite the same since they would be using less of the full frame. If you look at the DVD of “Ben Hur” you’ll notice that the image is “skinnier” across the frame than other Scope titles. This caused a furor when Turner ran a letterboxed version on its movie channel in the days before letterboxing was a familiar as it is now, since it really produced a small image on the tv screens of those days. StanMalone: any comment?

terrywade on July 18, 2008 at 6:15 pm

Thanks for your notes about last Sunday at The Fox. The people in the lobby I guess didn’t know the correct media used that night. It seems when I have been to the Fox in the past many years ago the Cinemascope screen was very wide. Wider then what I saw Sunday night. More like a big wide blind with the masking pulled down at the top. Now if someone can work out the pre show times and put in the add we won’t have all the people walking around in the dark 20 minutes into the feature. A new 70mm print of ‘West Side Story’ is now avail. Lets hope the Fox Atlanta can get a copy and advertise it in 70mm for future Coke shows. It is so great that the Fox runs the curtains and curtain lights. I still like the look of film 35mm or 70mm over digital video. Iam glad the Fox Atlanta still has kept the 35mm/70mm projectors. Even though they are not used much with the new digital video projector in the booth. To see a true 70mm film in the Fox with all the stereo surround speakers on It’s a dream come true!

RobertEndres on July 18, 2008 at 5:01 pm

Stan — Bravo for your comments above. You did a great job of explaining the issue of sightlines and their affect on screen size, something we lived with to some extent at Radio City. I was in your beautiful theatre once with my boss from Radio City when we attended a NATO conference in Atlanta. We walked over to the Fox to see if we could get a peek inside, and met Alex Cooley (?)outside who was the promoter for a BTO concert going on at the time. We asked if we could take a look and he let us in and gave us the run of the place. Warren and I wandered up to the booth, but the operators (were you one of them?) were busy manning the spots. We did take a quick look around so as not to bother anybody, and left. I believe you still had Motiograph projectors at that time before the 70mm install. That has to be one of the deepest booths in the country, as I recall the rewind bench and film cabinets were actually in the middle of the room a long way from the back wall which is where they would normally be. Very impressive!
Your comments about digital are also interesting, in that Mr. Wade was complaining about what he thought was bad digital projection, but which was 35mm projection with a normally used print. It’s too bad he didn’t get a chance to see your presentation of “Enchanted”, since good digital projection can really alter misconceptions. I work in a screening room which has done split screen comparisons with digital and film, and they can be almost identical. What is perhaps more enlightening howerver is that we run a lot of first edits transferred from 4K servers to D-5 H.D. You tend to forget you’re looking at digital, until months later when you screen the same thing on film, and even with a new print, you tend to see occasional specks of dust that you never would have noticed in the days before digital.

Most of the material we work with either film or digitally originated is transferred to 4K servers for post production work, and now the discussion in the industry is whether or not to archive at 4K. The studios have been archiving at 2K, but there’s a growing sympathy to save the “best” version of the material just as they saved the camera negative with 35 and 65mm. Be assured that digital material is being archived, its just a case of at what level of quality. (And now Bob Harris who restored “Lawrence” is pushing for 6K archiving, and NHK is demonstrating their 8K capture and projection system in Japan — “the times they are a-changin”.

HowardBHaas on July 18, 2008 at 3:13 pm

Reading Terry Wade’s comment above, I though “oh, my goodness, we might as well forget about showing film at the Boyd in Philadelphia if the Fox in Atlanta has also given up!” so I was greatly relieved when I read that a 35mm print was shown! I’ve heard so much about the Fox that I’d find it hard to believe they’d show a DVD of a classic. So far as I know, digital movies like Enchanted are available in 2k or 4k but only new movies- not classics.

Enchanted was shown in 2k or 4k rather than DVD, right?

And, yes, let’s hope a wonderful 70mm print of Ben Hur is issued for its 50th!