Comments from techman707

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techman707
techman707 commented about Glen Oaks Theater on Mar 5, 2014 at 11:01 pm

I know that the reason “Century’s Floral” wound up as a catering joint was because of Century’s codicil regarding future building use. I’m not certain, but I think someone that bought a former Century theatre with the restriction was able to break it in court. In the case of Century’s Queens Theatre, I believe it was auctioned (purchased by the Diaz brothers, who operated around 5 theatres. Their main office was located in the old “Loew’s Plaza Theatre” in Corona, the “Colony Theatre” on 82nd St. in Jackson Heights, the “Jackson Theatre Triplex, also on 82nd St. in Jackson Heights and one or two more I just don’t recall now.

techman707
techman707 commented about Glen Oaks Theater on Mar 5, 2014 at 8:24 pm

As I said, the Community Theatre property was owned by “Springer”, so they were able to get around it. Century never owned the Meadows (I think it was owned by NY Life, or whoever owns or owned all those garden apartments). The same is true for Roosevelt Field. I used to know more about these things, but I have a REAL memory problem that’s been getting worse.

btw-Century did own the ARGO (one of their prettier theatres. Even BEFORE theatres really went bad, the ARGO was forced to operate as a NON-THEATRE. I think it was “John’s Bargain Stores” right after it closed….very sad. I go to Home Depot there all the time and I’m forced to look at what it’s become. It just came to me that I think the Lynbrook Theatre was actually owned by Skouras….and I guess it became owned by UA Theatres when the Naify Brothers merged with them.

You might want to read this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marshall_Naify

techman707
techman707 commented about Glen Oaks Theater on Mar 5, 2014 at 6:12 pm

“The film I was attempting to see at Hollis was Tunnel of Love with Doris Day and Richard Widmark.”

You took a L-O-N-G time to complain about it. That must have played there around 1960. I worked at the Bellerose Theatre a couple of times when I worked out of Local 640. The Bellerose was right on the NYC/Nassau border. Way back it was originally a Local 306 house. It’s interesting to note that Century Theatres owned every theatre from the Community (really owned by the brother in law, SPRINGER, of Schwartz) Eastward. When they closed a theatre that they owned the property on (which was virtually everything), they had a clause in any sale that the building could NEVER BE USED for a movie theatre again.

techman707
techman707 commented about Glen Oaks Theater on Mar 5, 2014 at 3:26 am

robboehm,

“Hollis Theater in Hollis, NY on CT. For whatever reason the picture used above is the back of the theater. As I said it was an add on to the shopping center.”

It sure appeared to me that you were inferring that the “Hollis Theatre” was in a shopping center. If not, why are you even mentioning the Hollis Theatre here?

Are you in Queens? Do we know each other?

btw- Your statement “My comment had to do with a lousy projectionist at that site, which was on Jamaica Avenue.” is a little strange also. What year are you referring to? The Hollis Theatre, which was a cute little neighborhood theatre, ran porno for a number of years until its closing and the “customers” weren’t very particular about the projection. -LOL

techman707
techman707 commented about Glen Oaks Theater on Mar 5, 2014 at 1:01 am

I guess we probably never met, because I retired in 1998 from the Alpine Sevenplex in Brooklyn, which also happened to be the last theatre installation I did for Golden Theatre Management in 1986.

But you should know that there was NOTHING projectionists could have done to prevent the changeover to digital. It was pure dollars and sense and we weren’t even the big dollars. Look at poor Eastman Kodak, if THEY couldn’t do anything, then you know that IT HAD TO HAPPEN. Years ago I got into a BIG fight over platters that I was installing in a theatre. I was accused of “selling out the union”. I told these idiots that even if you KILL ME, there will just be someone else installing them tomorrow. YOU JUST CAN’T STOP PROGRESS. Anyone who thinks they can needs to see a shrink.-LOL

techman707
techman707 commented about Glen Oaks Theater on Mar 4, 2014 at 8:01 pm

I don’t have a clue what theatre you’re referring to when you say “Hollis Theater” The ONLY Hollis Theatre I know of was located on Hillside Avenue (or maybe Jamaica Avenue)in the 180’s. I have NO KNOWLEDGE of any theatre located in a shopping center called “The Hollis Theater”.

btw-Movie theatres use (or should use) the spelling “THEATRE”….as opposed to “THEATER” spelling, used for legit theaters.

techman707
techman707 commented about Glen Oaks Theater on Mar 4, 2014 at 7:08 pm

robboehm,

What (or where)is the “Hollis site” you’re referring to?

P.S. If my memory serves me (which hasn’t been too good lately), the Glen Oaks Theatre opened in 1961 or 1962. It was right around the end of the year, which is why I’m not sure.

techman707
techman707 commented about Glen Oaks Theater on Mar 4, 2014 at 6:58 pm

robboehm,

You’re 100% right. I was a film collector and NOW, with Blu-ray and 3D, I’m a disc collector. -LOL But in all seriousness, I have a $10k JVC projector and the Blu-ray discs on my 12ft wide scope screen look BETTER than any of my 16mm or 35mm film ever looked….and the sound is as good as ANY of the Broadway roadshow houses I ever worked in. I recently bought a 3D Blu-ray of Gravity. Can you imagine, buying a movie BEFORE the Academy Awards? ….and it won, go figure.

techman707
techman707 commented about Glen Oaks Theater on Mar 4, 2014 at 6:50 pm

Markp,

I can’t say that I disagree with you about the “rules”, however, as someone who installed more multi-plex theatres then I’d care to admit, the one thing that I’ve learned is that YOU CAN’T STOP PROGRESS!

Since you posted here at Century’s Glen Oaks Theatre, were you (and your dad) members of Local 306? If so, do we know each other?

P.S. Unfortunately, digital projection had really NOTHING to do with the “quality” or “competence” of projectionists. Even in a PERFECT WORLD where every projectionist was perfect, Digital Projection would have happened anyway.

techman707
techman707 commented about Glen Oaks Theater on Mar 3, 2014 at 7:50 am

1938 sounds about right. I never met E.H. Schwartz, but my father was friends with Leslie Schwartz, who was the president of Century Theatres when I was young. Although I started working as a projectionist in 1965, I can’t even recall whether he was still the president of Century. I can tell you that they (Century Theatres) could be a tough company to work for. They had a list of “rules” that rivaled NONE.

techman707
techman707 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Sep 12, 2013 at 11:41 pm

dennisczimmerman: I might have been there that night too.-lol The seats in the “front balcony” you refer too were sold as “loge” seats. I believe they charged more for them than the rest of the balcony.

techman707
techman707 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Sep 11, 2013 at 10:23 pm

I might have misunderstood the question about “Sitting Bull”. If you were asking if “they” (the exhibitor and film company) considered “Sitting Bull” an “A” first run picture, the answer is yes. If other people did, well that’s another story. -lol

techman707
techman707 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Sep 10, 2013 at 10:56 pm

Bigjoe59,

While I would like to help you with the Frankenstein question, I wasn’t born yet, so I really can’t say. -LOL If I had to guess, I would say that it was NOT in its first run. I say that only because of the Mayfair’s booking history, not from any first hand knowledge.

I do remember “Shoes of the Fisherman” though. The theatre was already beginning to go down hill about that time. The choice not to use a transparency and use regular marquee letters was probably the film distributor’s choice. As I recall, that film didn’t do that well.

techman707
techman707 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Sep 9, 2013 at 7:57 pm

Bigjoe59,

It might have been “Once Is Not Enough”.

techman707
techman707 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Sep 9, 2013 at 6:13 pm

I just don’t like when “speculators” start buying up a neighborhood and then running up the cost of everything until the people that were living there are forced out. They call it “gentrification”, but I call it ?!r#$%!@.

techman707
techman707 commented about Victory Theatre on Jun 12, 2013 at 2:43 pm

I saw “The Unsinkable Molly Brown” at this theatre while on a multi state trip. When I finally got back to New York, “Molly Brown” was first opening at the Music Hall. I couldn’t believe they built such a spectacular theatre, in what I looked at as a “little town”. In any event, I’m glad that it’s still there and hasn’t been demolished….like virtually all the great theatres in New York have been.

techman707
techman707 commented about RKO Alden Theatre on May 2, 2013 at 5:20 am

“Willburg145 on October 5, 2012 at 4:11 pm I doubt the interior is still intact. I remember going to a DMV office located in what probably was the auditorium. As I recall the lobby was located on Jamaica and the theatre on the side street. Does anyone know what the interior was like?”

I had the MISFORTUNE of working as a projectionist at the Alden for a few years after it was “quaded”. The motor vehicle office was NOT in the theatre building, it was a separate NEW building.

techman707
techman707 commented about RKO Alden Theatre on May 2, 2013 at 5:15 am

LugosiResearch,

I believe that Bela Lugosi did the same show at the RKO Keith’s in Richmond Hill.

techman707
techman707 commented about Kew Gardens Cinemas on May 2, 2013 at 4:41 am

United Artists never owned or operated the Austin Theatre as described in the overview. The person who wrote it might have mistaken it for the Continental theatre in Forest Hills for a short time. UA also operated the Midway and the Forest Hills Theatre.

techman707
techman707 commented about Queens Theatre on Apr 22, 2013 at 9:36 pm

Ed, My mistake. When I saw the picture with what appears to be construction on the entrance, I assumed it was an old picture. I had passed the theatre previously, after the front was done over and the marquee removed and it was finished. I guess they’re doing construction again on the entrance.

Thanks for the picture.

techman707
techman707 commented about Queens Theatre on Apr 22, 2013 at 3:25 am

Ed, How come the new pictures you posted don’t show up under photos?

techman707
techman707 commented about Community Twin Theatre on Apr 22, 2013 at 3:19 am

This theatre is falling apart and the Queens Theatre down the street had its outside renovated. I guess you need to run a church to save a theatre today.

techman707
techman707 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Apr 13, 2013 at 1:19 pm

Al, Still, some things are best left alone. When you attempt to rid crime in one area, it just pops up somewhere else. The same goes for the people who have been pushed out of Hell’s Kitchen. Where are we hiding them now? That will be the next up and coming neighborhood for real estate investors.-LOL

techman707
techman707 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Apr 13, 2013 at 2:37 am

“Since the locals rented and never owned, they were the first to go when the slum lords sold out.”

SAD, BUT TRUE.

However, you’ll note that I never referred to anything below 42nd Street. And, 11th Avenue was in a class by itself….and I doubt that there were many people that would go down there alone at night.

When “On the Waterfront” was filmed, my father was a Custom’s Agent on the docks and I watched some of the filming there. In fact, one of the goons in the film who was a friend of my father’s was a Longshoremen that worked on the docks and who they hired for the film.

The politicians have made it sound bad enough so they could rape this city, please don’t make it sound worse then it actually was.-LOL

techman707
techman707 commented about Embassy 1,2,3 Theatre on Apr 13, 2013 at 12:24 am

While you might have called the area where Lincoln Center was built a “slum”, I don’t think that the area from 8th to 10th Avenue from 42nd through 57th Street could ever have been classified as a “slum”. The buildings don’t fall into that category. In fact, most are still there today….only the cost for an apartment or value of the property has changed. I guess driving out the area’s indigenous residents changes it from a slum to a whatever?