Photos favorited by film

  • <p>Capitol Theatre Griffith Street, Coolangatta, QLD – Theatre seats for sale by the roadside – Relics of an era – The Demise of a Picture Palace - A most significant photo posted on line by Dianne Leslight*</p>
              <p>To the people of Coolangatta “The Capitol Theatre” was a Picture Palace, a ‘Palace of Dreams’, part of a glamorous entertainment era that will never return. A night out at the movies was an event, and an afternoon matinee was a major treat - Contributed by Greg Lynch for the sake of history – <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>Photo of Chips Rafferty with Winsome Moffat opposite the Rex Theatre 1950’s : PHOTO CREDIT: DAYLESFORD & DISTRICT HISTORICAL SOCIETY.</p>
              <p>David Hill writes on line – March 13, 2007 – It’s a crying shame about the Rex, all in the name of progress I guess. I grew up in D’ford, from 1946 ’til I left the town as a grown-up 17 year old to go to the “big smoke”. I can remember the first VistaVision film that came there, and Chips Rafferty talking from the stage at the front of the screen to us school children after the screening of the film “Jedda”. If I remember correctly, a young member of the community had a part in the film. I also have fond memories of the Saturday matinees and later when I was allowed to go to the Saturday night showings with my older brothers who would buy me a ticket to the “stalls”, whilst they went upstairs to the “dress circle” with their girl friends.</p>
              <p>Harry Maddocks was the proprietor of the theatre then, and I can recall him unloading these large canisters of film from his car into the theatre which I think he had probably collected from the station – Contributed by Greg Lynch – <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>Mayfair Newsreel Theatrette Neon Sign, high above Hay Street – Scarce Photo taken during the early 50’s</p>
              <p>The Mayfair Newsreel Theatrette was an extremely successful operation. Well located in Hay Street, it wasn’t unusual to see long queues of patrons, waiting to see a new 3 Stooge Comedy, or a Pete Smith Special.</p>
              <p>NEWSREEL THEATRETTES* were scattered around Australia, and first appeared in the early 30’s. Most were below street level. These establishments screened continuous newsreels from Movietone, Universal & Cinesound, along with cartoons & special featurettes. There were no intermissions, and it was possible to sit there all day. EG: Come & go as you please – The Mayfair was an excellent example of a well set-up newsreel theatrette with a cosy ambiance, which used to boast that it was the coolest place in town – Contributed by Greg Lynch – <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>The Daily News (Perth, WA)  Fri 12 Dec 1930 Page 8  CAPITOL THEATRE BEAUTY</p>
              After an extended closure the Capitol is again about to reveal its majestic, beauty to Perth theatre-goers. The time is therefore not inopportune, to detail some of the many
              arresting features of this artistic example of theatre construction and design, for the Capitol
              theatre is undoubtedly one of the most, modern and beautiful theatres in the Commonwealth. Majestic and spectacular, but not repulsively spectacular, artistic without being overdone, roomy, airy and combining many features which are novel in the architecture of Perth’s theatres. Such as the impressions gained from an inspection of the Capitol. Majestic it is massive, too, but never overpowering. Its tones are subdued, it is
              patterned strikingly, but not obtrusively, it
              is bright but not gaudy, and paramount
              in its construction is the effort to provide comfortable appointments among comfortable surroundings - Contributed by Greg Lynch - <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>The Daily News (Perth, WA) Tue 15 Mar 1938 Page 9 reports –</p>
              <p>ONE of the most popular theatres in the suburbs, the Broadway Theatre, in Albany Road, Victoria Park, has been remodeled and will again open to the public tomorrow night. Having a seating capacity of about 1200, the Broadway theatre, for ten and more years, has been regarded by residents of the suburb, and by others, as a home for good moving picture entertainment. In keeping with the modern trend, both in the way of building construction as applied to theatres, and also the requirements of talkie entertainment, the management of the Broadway have left no stone un-turned to make it one of the most up-to-date of suburban theatres. Although the site of the theatre remains the same, the building and accommodation have undergone many changes, but it is still the Broadway — a name familiar to all most everyone, young and old, in Victoria Park.</p>
              <p>In remodeling the Broadway attention has been devoted by the architect, Mr. W. G. Bennett, to every phase and feature, always preserving in view the main consideration — comfort and convenience of patrons. One of the principal alterations, structurally, was in the raising of the entire roof of the theatre. This has been raised eight feet above the old roof-level, and has made it possible for drastic alterations in the circle, lounge and stalls accommodation. The dress circle and lounge has been regraded to make possible a clear and uninterrupted view of the screen from every seat. Regrading of: the ground floor, with similar results in the stalls, has also been carried out throughout. The decorative features strike a distinctly modern note, light and color playing important roles in harmony, with each other.</p>
              <p>The entrance to the theatre is made through simply designed and decorated plate glass doors. The floor of the entrance is carried out in terrazzo squares, blending light grays and greens in pleasing contrast. Textured dadoes and walls above treated in squares of soft hues flank the entrance to the theatre, from which rises an impressive staircase. The figured graining of walnut timber gives added charm and attractiveness to the staircase treatment. Figured walnut, in fact, plays a big part in the decoration of the theatre throughout.</p>
              <p>The ticket box has been built into the wall to the right of the entrance. Excellent use of mirrors has also been made in the remodeling of the Broadway Theatre. A specially designed and handsome mirror adorns the first landing on the main stairway to the dress circle while another, a large circular panel, is included in the circle. While remodelling the interior of the theatre, particular attention was paid to the acoustic qualities of the auditorium. In the ceiling treatment, specially selected material was chosen to obtain the best possible results with the talkie equipment installed. The light fawn color of the ceiling blends splendidly with the other soft toning of the color scheme, while the architectural lines are modern and tastefully designed.</p>
              <p>The scheme for the dress circle foyer is distinctive. Here the floor covering has been put down and the furnishings so arranged that the foyer may be used for dancing or other entertainment after the show, if a party of patrons so desires. Well lighted and ventilated, this foyer forms an ideal small hall for private parties.</p>
              <p>BUILDER AND DECORATOR The builders responsible for the reconstruction of this Broadway Theatre were Totterdoll Brothers and the building is a memorial to the thoroughness of every phase of construction. One of the features of the work that calls for special mention is that of decorating carried out by Mr. W. J. Nicholls, painter and decorator, for whom Mr. Clem Kennedy directed the work. The painting and decorating is in keeping with the modern architecture featured throughout. The management’s policy to show only the pick of pictures coming to this State will be continued with the re-opening of the Broadway Theatre, the manager, Mr. J. R. Johnston says. ‘The main attraction for the re-opening will be ‘Green Light, this is one of the big pictures of the year. In selecting the programmes for the theatres under my control an endeavor is made to give only the best possible in the way of talkie entertainment.‘With regard to the new Broadway Theatre, Mr. Johnston said that programmes would be changed twice a week. Each Wednesday and Saturday. The theatre would be open every night of the week. In addition there will be matinees on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons.</p>
              <p>Mr. Johnston, who also controls the Amusu theatre and gardens and the Savoy Theatre, Victoria Park, said that the Broadway had always been very popular and he felt that the remodelling of the theatre would serve to increase this popularity - EXTRA NOTE: Green Light is a 1937 American film directed by Frank Borzage. The film is adapted from a novel written by Lloyd C. Douglas. The novel is closely related to Douglas' previous book, Magnificent Obsession, which was also adapted as a movie. Errol Flynn stars as Dr. Newell Paige, a surgeon whose refusal to name the real culprit in an operation gone fatally awry results in the ruin of his career - Contributed by Greg Lynch – <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>MAGNIFICENCE LOST – In the opinion of this writer, the destruction of the Capitol theatre in 1968 was a major sin against the people’s of Perth, and the subsequent generations to follow. The Capitol theatre was a special place with a unique ambiance, an atmosphere that cocooned and embraced an audience in it’s magnificence. A place you could enter and leave the problems of the world behind. An experience that has been lost forever with the advent of the concrete boxes that exist today under the guise and pretense of theatres. The Capitol theatre was a “Mighty Picture Palace” in the truest sense.</p>
              <p>During the very early 50’s I was employed in the bio box at the “Regent Theatre Guildford”. A job was advertised at “The Capitol” for an assistant projectionist. What an opportunity, a chance to work in a major city theatre such as The Capitol didn’t come around every day. So I applied and lined up with half a dozen young hopefuls in the beautiful upstairs lounge foyer. My turn came, Oh you work for Bob Yelland at “The Regent”, does he know you are applying ? – of course he didn’t, and that was the end of it. That night Bob said – Heard you applied for a job at The Capitol today, aren’t you happy here Greg ? – A difficult moment in a young life that could only happen in Perth during the 50’s. After all Perth at that time was still a village with less then 300+ thousand in the metropolitan area.</p>
              <p>As a youngster at Christian Brothers, St Georges Terrace, there were many opportunities to visit “The Capitol” – My uncle was a Catholic priest (Father Albert Lynch) and at the time held the position of supreme music adjudicator for the Catholic school / college Eisteddfod’s. All of the Catholic special events were held at “The Capitol” including outings to see films, such as “The Vatican” / The Miracle of Our Lady of Fatima – “The Capitol Theatre” held the Columbia Pictures franchise, and we were able to enjoy “Film Noir” classics such as, “The Big Heat” / “Human Desire” / “On The Waterfront”.</p>
              <p>Wide-Screen 1953 – The Capitol installed Wide-Screen for the season of the French master-piece “The Wages of Fear”. As we progressed into the 50’s the Columbia Pictures franchise went to Lionel Hart’s new “Liberty Theatre” in Barrack Street.</p>
              <p>The Capitol was the mecca for live entertainment, who can forget in 1953 “Virgil” The Magnificent – World’s Greatest Illusionist, or the ill fated piano virtuoso “William Kapell” – Here I was lucky enough to go back stage & get a much treasured autograph. And what about the numerous “Wally Hadley” Sunday night, Capitol theatre jazz nights & dance band contests. Wally was a celebrated Perth, banjo / guitar player of extra-ordinary ability, who toured the OZ Tivoli Circuit with the great Freddy Morgan for entrepreneur Harry Wren as a double act. By the middle 50’s I was living and working for Hoyts in Melbourne. Every day I have cause to reflect on our obligation to pass on the privileged experiences we have enjoyed as being part of the great Picture Palace Era … Contributed by Greg Lynch – <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>WINDSOR PICTURE GARDENS 1950 - 98 Stirling Highway, Nedlands, WA - Photo State Library of WA - <script type="text/javascript">
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              <p>The West Australian Newspaper (Perth, WA) Wed 1 May 1929 - reported</p>
              <p>Capitol Theatre William Street, Perth, WA Architects: Christian Frederik Mouritzen, George Temple Poole</p>
              <p>Styles:<br>Art Nouveau</p>
              <p>Entering the auditorium one is met by an atmosphere of immensity; but it is not a repelling vastness. An all-embracing scheme of comfortable furnishings and adroitly managed adjuncts has been worked out to cover the slightest object. The ceiling is beautifully paneled and decorated in delicate pigments. In the centre, a dome with a span of 40ft. rises 9ft above the ceiling, and from it is suspended a huge hand-cut crystal chandelier, which was imported from Austria. It is 18ft. 6in. long and 7ft. wide, and weighs two tons. Besides interior lighting, it is illuminated, by four 2,000 candle power projection lamps in the ceiling, and is capable of lighting effectively the whole theatre. Coloured lights are operated from inside the cresting of the dome, and coloured cones from perforations at the top of the walls will be directed on the chandelier, producing an attractive effect of lighting the crystal in different colours. Two domes in the ceiling over the back of the dress circle have also been fitted with concealed lights. The walls of the auditorium further the decorative scheme of the ceiling. Along the tops of the walls, Tindale and Miller’s Lime Co. has designed panels of banksia – Contributed by Greg Lynch – <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>Celebrating Beverley McFarlane, who was crowned “Miss Victoria” in 1959. Beverley at the time was a popular Usherette at The Grove Theatre Yarrawonga. Here she is pictured in front of the iconic open air theatre.</p>
              <p>It’s been 50 years since Miss Victoria 1959 received her welcome home reception at Yarrawonga/Mulwala. Beverley McFarlane (now Beverley Long) was crowned Miss Victoria on July 29th, 1959. A couple of days later, Beverley returned home to Yarrawonga to what could be described as a hero’s welcome with 1,000 people cheering as she arrived at the train station. Beverly was then driven to the Yarrawonga Shire Hall behind a cavalcade of marching girls and the local brass band. Fifty years on the day has been re-enacted, and again there was much celebration.</p>
              <p>This event has been immortalized at the Pioneer Museum at Mulwala, with a display of artifacts & a short video detailing the history of the event. The event which put Yarrawonga on the map. The YARRAWONGA – MULWALA PIONEER MUSEUM @ 151 Melbourne Street, Mulwala, NSW – Opening times Wed to Sun 1.00pm to 4.30pm … Photo courtesy of Alex & Ann Sloane – Contributed by Greg Lynch – <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>Robert Menzies packs The Rialto Theatre Kew</p>
              <p>By the 1940’s cinema had come of age. It was a time when most of the population went to the movies, at least once, or twice a week. During the war years it was a place of emotional refuge, a special place. The Rialto Theatre Kew was the meeting place of a community. More people would pass through it’s doors than any other public building in the town, and as such it was fitting in 1941, upon his return from Britain, that Robert Menzies, Prime Minister of Australia, would choose The Rialto to speak to his electorate. Menzies led a government that was preparing the nation for war. The Kew council, sensing the occasion announced that Mr Menzies first major speech should be held in his home town, and within his own constituency. In 1941, he had visited Britain to discuss war strategies with Churchill and other leaders, and while travelling to the UK, he visited the Australian troops serving in the North African Campaign.</p>
              <p>On May 31 he spoke to the nation from The Melbourne Town Hall. The following day, Sunday June Ist , 1941 he spoke to the people of Kew. Mr Menzies was cheered by thousands who cried out “Good on you Bob” It was the warmest and most tumultuous welcome of his career. His speech was to be relayed to the nation through Radio 3LO. Thousands of people were unable to enter the Rialto, and his speech was broadcast to those who were standing in the street out front. Sections of the VDC, Kew Volunteer Defense Corps, uniformed and carrying rifles, took part in the reception, marching to the Rialto with fixed bayonets, while providing a guard of honor. After inspecting them in the main street, Mr. Menzies was welcomed by Cr. Price, Mayor, in his official robes. Patriotic airs were played by the fire brigade band as Mr. Menzies entered the theatre. Then, as the drums rolled continuously, the theatre was darkened, the Greek, U-S, and British flags were hoisted successively, picked out by a spotlight and fluttering in a rush of air, then anthems of the 3 nations were played. Menzies told the crowd “We must nerve ourselves as we have never nerved ourselves before. In a few months to come we shall need every ounce of courage.” The audience completed the afternoon with a standing ovation, along with a stirring rendition of “For he’s a jolly good fellow”.</p>
              <p>Menzies spoke on August 11, 1974 at a ceremony awarding him the Freedom of the City of Kew, in the heart of his old electorate of Kooyong, in Melbourne. Menzies was 79. It was one of his final public appearances before his death in May 1978 … Contributed by Greg Lynch – <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>“The Rialto Theatre” is a modest example of the Art Deco style</p>
              <p>Cinemas of the 1920s and 1930s featured highly decorated interiors. The interior of “The Rialto” is a modest example of the Art Deco style.
              Constructed during the inter-war period (c.1919-c.1940) it is representative of the era. (Architects: Purchas & Teague) The official opening date was Wed 31st Aug, 1921. Fibrous plaster was utilized because of the moderate cost, and ease of molding, along with speed of installation. It also allowed them to give the building its own distinctive character. With “The Rialto” it can be viewed in the barreled ceiling and in the decoration of the side walls, which feature regularly spaced piers, adorned at the top of each pier with stylized plaster ornaments.</p>
              <p>The building was made from brick and stone, and was mechanically ventilated from behind ornate plaster grills located on either side of the proscenium. This was a decorative opportunity, for the grilles and vents to eventually become an integral part of the all over scheme. Initially the theatre was heated with wall radiators, this was later changed to metal foot-warmers. An ingenious system where hot water is plumbed into the theatre via pipes to the audience’s feet. This type of heating is still installed in The Palais Theatre, St Kilda.
              Air-conditioning, evaporative or refrigeration, was never installed at The Rialto. The original seating capacity was 1269</p>
              <p>The theatre was built as a cinema, with a backstage area suitable only to house the theatres speakers.
              A supplementary stage was built, extending out from the front of the screen, to cater for Saturday
               matinees and the odd social / political occasion. The upstairs lounge suggests something of
              the social make up of the era, that is the seats in the lounge were more
              expensive than those in the stalls below. The projection booth was located down-stairs in
              the back corner of the stalls, EG: off center, instead of the traditional position in the back of the dress circle. To make matters worse, just about everything that went on in the booth could
              be heard as distant chatter to the stalls audience. This was some-what remedied during 1957, when Hoyts
              sent in a carpenter to build a  supplementary wall lined with fibrous sound insulation.
              Ventilation remained a problem in the booth until 1957, when a powerful exhaust system was installed.
              The projection booth sat on top of a head high basement, which housed two large car batteries that powered the exit lights. Exit lights by law had to be powered separate from the mains power supply.
              The concession shop ( lolly bar) was located off the foyer next to the projection booth. This was in competition with the milk bar, linked by a pedestrian crossing,  located directly across the street … Contributed by Greg Lynch - <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>PHOTO © Paul Lemmon</p>
              <p>PHOTO features The Paramount Theatre Oakleigh projection booth, showing pioneering projectionist Ken Lemmon tending his Westrex arcs. Ken Lemmon entered the cinema industry in 1925, and for a lifetime, from silent movies to the advent of sound, practiced the art of showing pictures. Paul Lemmon explains that during the 60’s & until the theatres closure, his dad Ken Lemmon, worked together with long time friend Sid Smith, and shared part time duties running the projection booth at The Paramount for Cosmopolitan Motion Pictures. Ken & Sid screened Greek, Indian, German and Turkish films on Western Electric projectors, learning snippets of these foreign languages as they went. Ken actually undertook a Greek language course to expand his vocabulary of stories and images that he monitored through the ports in the Paramount projection booth – Contributed by Greg Lynch – <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>BRIEF HISTORY OF THE COOBER PEDY DRIVE-IN THEATRE – The Drive-in theatre was built in 1965 and has become an important part of Coober Pedy. Films had been screened previously in the town hall. The Drive-In provided a venue for people to get together.  Families would share a picnic meal before the films started, and made the outing a major social occasion. The Progress and Miners Association built the Drive-in with money raised from donations and the raffle of a Holden ute. Volunteer’s gathered to do the construction work. The original bio box was a corrugated iron shed, equipped with the Tokiwa projectors. In 1996, a private group approached the District Council with a proposal to re-open the drive-in. Two Kalee 21 projectors were acquired from the Port Augusta Drive-in – Now movies could now be shown weekly. The lease ran out in 2000, and a group of volunteers took over with a reduced policy of showing films fortnightly.</p>
              <p>SCREEN DREAM COMES TRUE – Screen dream come true for Coober Pedy, as 50-year-old drive-in wins fight to stay open – Callie Watson, Coober Pedy, February 14, 2014 – The Advertiser writes – The Coober Pedy drive-in has won its fight to stay alive, receiving more than $70,000 in State Government funds to help buy a new projector. The Outback community has spent the past year fundraising to keep the iconic drive-in going, raising about $70,000. But this fell short of the at least $120,000 needed to upgrade from the old, phased-out 35mm film projectors to a more modern alternative. The Coober Pedy is one of only two drive-ins in South Australia, along with the Gepps Cross drive-in. Planning Minister John Rau on Thursday confirmed $7.5 million in funding for projects which will be matched dollar-for-dollar by local councils, securing the drive-in’s future. Chief projectionist Tina Boyd said new equipment would help the 50-year-old drive-in, which screens films about once a fortnight, operate more regularly and access a wider range of films. “Sometimes there will be 20 cars, other times 100, it’s very popular,” Ms Boyd said. Drive-in committee chairman Steve Staines said it would also allow the town to market it as a tourist attraction. “We’re thrilled that it will not only keep going for the local community, but also add another aspect to the tourism offerings we have here.”  – Contributed by Greg Lynch for the sake of history – 70’s Coober Pedy Drive-in photo  - “Opals of the Never Never” by R. G. Haill. 1982 - <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>“THE PORT HEDLAND PICTURE GARDENS” WA – Photo courtesy of “The Glass Family” – The Port Hedland Picture Gardens were true open air theatre gardens, featuring traditional deckchairs on bare earth, and the walls covered in greenery. One night they screened a 3D movie & handed out 3D glasses, and a character on the screen poked the audience with a spear. This caused the old fellas & kids to jump out of their seats. <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>THE OPENING OF REGENT THEATRE GUILDFORD ( Western Australia ) UNDER THE HEADING “GUILDFORD’S PROGRESS”… Source : The Swan Express (Midland Junction, WA : Fri 12 Mar 1926 - Despite the rain on Tuesday evening  ( 8th March 1926 )  the seating accommodated for 700 at the Regent Theatre Guildford, which was almost filled. Also, it was not a children’s night, and that fact alone would affect any audience. The builders had been busy right up to the last minute, and the scaffolding, casks, planks, etc. were piled on the adjourning land. The theatre is a handsome trick structure of imposing appearance, brilliantly lighted by large globes under the awning. The entrance is flanked by two lock-up shops, one already being open for business. Carpeted stairs lead from the spacious entrance to the stalls, from which the pictures may be viewed in comfort. On the floor of the hall long padded forms give comfort to patrons, and a few rows of chairs in front are available for restless children. The advantages of the ventilating arrangements will be appreciated in the hot weather, and the windows are large and well arranged. The top windows open at a central pivot, and on each side all are connected by an iron shaft, which is operated by a rope on a pulley. One pull on the rope therefore opens or shuts all the windows. The lower windows are balanced by sash-weights, and are raised or lowered by means of a long rod. The screen is artistically bordered and tilted. The hall is so well proportioned that its capacity may be under-estimated, but the attractive appearance of white walls and polished jarrah, together with symmetrical designs of walls, ceilings, etc, will please all. The orchestral accompaniment was sympathetic with the themes pictured, and the music was delightful through out. Miss Netta Huey was the pianist and conductor, and her sisters Bernice and Viola performed with violin and banjo respectively. The pictures were clearly shown, and were immensely enjoyed….3D….A novelty featurette was that of pictures from which the characters came right out to the audience - Known at the time as Stereoscopiks.  One almost winced when the lariat swung near one’s head, or a missile came straight for one’s eye. During the showing of these the audience wore spectacles with blue and red lenses. “The Dark Angel” ( The main feature, starring Ronald Colman & Vilma Bánky - A silent film ) was a picture of exceptional interest and charm. During the interval, Hon. W. D. Johnson, M.L.A., said he was pleased to be present on the unique occasion of the opening of the new picture hall which was as good as any in the metropolitan area, and reflected great credit on Mr. Hall’s enterprise. The slope of the floor and tilt of the screen made the pictures more effective. The
              building, of which the ventilation was a special feature, was a credit to the architect and builder, and one of which Guildford was proud. He congratulated Mr. Hall on his expenditure of £5000, and hoped the enterprise would be fully rewarded. Mr. Hall had had visions of better accommodation during the eight years he had been showing pictures in Guildford at the Vaudeville theatre. They were grateful to him for the congenial conditions of the new hall, and trusted that the public would make adequate response. He officially declared the Regent Theatre open. The Mayor of Guildford (Mr. E. A. Evans) thanked Mr. Johnson for having declared the hall open, and expressed full appreciation of Mr. Hall’s enterprise. They would remember in the past Mr. Hall’s ready assistance to Red Cross work, and prompt response to any call on behalf of charities. For the good work in the past, charitable actions,
              and for the provision of an excellent picture house they were deeply indebted to Mr. Geo. Hall. The community spirit was good for Guildford, as well as the whole of Australia, and folk should extend their patronage to the picture hall in Guildford, where it was well deserved. The vote of thanks was carried by acclamation. Mr. Johnson expressed his pleasure at the vote of thanks by the Mayor and its hearty support. Mr. Hall desired to express appreciation of the good work, of the architects and builders. The hall was quite modern and all would appreciate its special conveniences.
              (Applause.) During the interval some friends of Mr. Hall partook of light refreshments, and toasted the health of the proprietor, wishing him good success in the venture - End…ADDITIONAL COMMENT - The Regent Theatre Architect was Samuel Rosenthal. The theatre was commissioned by George Hall Esq. as a low budget operation in times of relative economic hardship. The vestibule was small and the theatre was also to be used as a hall, so there was provision for an adequate platform stage. It has unadorned geometric forms which are shown to advantage in the Balustrading on the balcony. The facade has an original pediment shape, rendered relief and decorative stucco detailing…George Hall had previously operated The Vaudeville theatre Guildford which he closed prior to the opening of The new Regent Theatre….The Dark Angel (1925) is a silent drama film, based on the play The Dark Angel, a Play of Yesterday and To-day by H. B. Trevelyan, released by First National Pictures, Produced by Samuel Goldwyn and starring Ronald Colman, Vilma Bánky, and Wyndham Standing. Note - This is now considered a lost film … Supplied by Greg Lynch - <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>Astor Theatre Kilmore, Victoria Australia – Update photo (Sept 12, 2018) Photo courtesy of Greg Cugola. The Astor Theatre in the early morning light - the ghost of Christmas <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>Pioneer (Walk In) Open Air Theatre, Alice Springs – Image - A Town Like Alice 22X28 Lobby Poster – The Australian gala premiere, or ‘bush premiere’ of  “A Town Like Alice” as reported by The Australian Women’s Weekly (8 August 1956), was held in Alice Springs at the Pioneer Walk-In Theatre. The Walk-In is an open-air theatre built by Leslie ‘Snow’ Kenna in the 1940s on the southern corner of Parsons Street and Leichhardt Terrace, beside the banks of the River Todd. The occasion was also used to raise funds for the Royal Flying Doctor Service. Locals arrived in casual dress, carrying thick rugs and cushions for the open-air screening. The theatre was decorated with bunting and palm leaves. During the intermission, Arunta men and women from the Hermannsburg Mission wearing khaki riding pants and bright tartan checked shirts sung ‘Lest We Forget’ and ‘The Lord Has Ascended On High’ in their language. It was only in the film’s final minutes that the people of Alice Springs got to see anything of their town and district, with some locals appearing as extras on horseback and in street scenes receiving an amused reaction. The whole evening was so informal, relaxed and ‘Australian’ that The Argus (28 July 1956) jokingly reported that Hollywood would have been horrified. The film premiere raised more than £700 for a special emergency whistle-signal service for the outback people. Bookings for the premiere were preferential. As 8 p.m. approached hopeful tourists and locals crowded the street outside the theatre, owned by “Snow” Kenna, who has been in the Northern Territory since the early 1930s. In those days his theatre was the only one between Port Augusta and Tennant Creek. It reminded Peter Finch of his Army days, when he was serving in the Northern Territory and used to pass through Alice Springs and see open air movie shows in the various army cinemas…<script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>PICTURED – The Pioneer Walk-In (Open Air) Theatre, located in Parsons Street Alice Springs, at dusk early 1960’s – Photo Courtesy of Charlie Poole…Greg Lynch Says – Up till 1935 the social life of Alice Springs was confined to an occasional dance and a concert, everybody attended, and to our unsophisticated minds they were just the thing. Then one day in rolled an old car with two men and equipment to modernize our way back town. Snow Kenna and Bill Burton, the ‘movie men’ had hit the town. They began showing movies in the old Welfare Hall. Well known business identity Ly Underdown saw the possibility of this modern entertainment and erected his Capitol Open Air Theatre, into which he installed Snow and his projection plant. Bill Burton moved on to Tennant Creek to open a show there, while in 1939 Snow decided to build his own theatre. The Pioneer (Walk In) Open Air Theatre in Parsons Street… Acknowledgment : Centralian Advocate (Alice Springs, NT : Friday 8 December 1950, Page 11 – <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>Middle 40’s photo - Interior “Pioneer (walk in) Open Air Theatre” Alice Springs…Photo courtesy of “The Wilkin Collection” restored by Peter Bassett…..Extract from the “Centralian Advocate” Alice Springs, NT - dated  Sat 25 Oct 1947…
              PIONEER PICTURES - This popular Picture Theatre
              which runs only the best in films, again has its usual bright programme for tonight. It has such crowded houses that the Management wants the public to know that any reservations made must be claimed and paid for before 7.45 p.m. or otherwise they will be sold. - <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>Ly Underdown photo – Acknowledgement : Northern Territory Government Photographer Collection. “Uncle Ly” ( Lycurgus ) Underdown, (pictured) Builder of “The Capitol Open Air Theatre” and the “Alice Springs Hotel”, later Telford Alice Hotel. Ly Underdown’s “Capitol Theatre” resembled a stockade with four walls and reminded me of “The Alamo” (which of course starred John Wayne). An elevated projection booth was mounted at the rear, along with a motor power generator located strategically on the outside theatre wall to muffle the sound. Rows of canvas seating were installed and poster boards erected at the front entrance. <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>Photo courtesy of Cal Whalan – Pioneer (Walk In) Open Air Theatre (Interior) Alice Springs – Featuring canvas seating – (Time frame - sometime during the 50’s) Photo acknowledgement – Cal Whalan</p>
  • <p>Pictured - The Loyalty Theatre, Rose Street, Upper Ferntree Gully (Vic) - Greg Lynch Says - A search of Public Building Files reveals a submission of application for building a theatre in Rose Street under the name Loyalty Pictures, dated 25/09/1939. Approval was granted that same year to the applicant C. Spalding..The Loyalty Theatre (clad in A/C sheeting) was built in 1939 with 376 seats by Charlie Spalding who was the owner / operator until 1950.</p>
  • <p>Greg Lynch says……The Ascot Theatre began as a public hall, opening 22 February 1919. The local Rivervale community and the prominent Newey family raised the funds to build it. Films were shown from the beginning mixed with public events. As time progressed the local committee running the hall ran into debt and the property was sold and used for a variety of purposes, including a billiard saloon..After World War 2. the hall reverted back for use as a cinema. In the main the theatre & gardens were operated by R. R. Perrie, who over the decades ran a circuit of theatres in the southern suburbs. This included Armadale Hall & Gardens, Gosnells Hall & Gardens, Queens Park Hall & Gardens and Bayswater Hall & Gardens . R. R. Perrie was a talented visionary and showman, with extensive management experience at the prestigious “Prince of Wales” (Perth City) 1934 and “Hoyts New Regent” (Perth City) 1935..The Ascot Theatre & Gardens closed in 1966…The building once known as The Ascot Theatre was demolished in the mid 2000s… <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>CinemaScope comes to The Pioneer Open Air Theatre Tennant Creek, NT – Greg Lynch says – Fri 10 Sep, 1954 ( Page 6 ) Bill Burton receives a mention in “Tennant Creek Notes” quote: “Mr. Bill Burton arrived back from Adelaide on Thursday’s air craft and tells me he hasn’t been warm since he left Tennant Creek. Bill took an advanced course in Motion Picture Projection whilst away” end quote.. Yes it was time for the Pioneer to go Big Screen and Bill had traveled to Adelaide to learn about the installation of the modern miracle, CinemaScope. This meant the purchase of anamorphic lenses and the building of a new double size screen to project CinemaScope movies. Yes Big Screen movies had arrived in Tennant <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>Vintage photograph of the auditorium at its 1924 opening.</p>
  • <p>Millie Comes to Perth’s Piccadilly -
              Greg Lynch says - The year is 1967 and Piccadilly Theatre management demonstrates a creative style of Showmanship in the promotion of the Universal Pictures production “Thoroughly Modern Millie”  A  mannequin had been dressed as Julie Andrews in a flapper costume and appears to be hanging with both hands from the theatre flagpole (flying way above Hay Street).This attracted a lot of attention (and stiff necks) - I took the B/W photo of Millie hanging on the flagpole while visiting Perth in 1967 with an old Box Brownie (the only camera to hand). To me It demonstrated an “out-there” old style of showmanship, something that’s missing in today’s automated digital world of concrete boxs. In 1967 I was with Universal Pictures in Melbourne, and as an old Perth boy I would return frequently to see industry friends & family. I have strong memories of The Piccadilly as a quality mainstream city release house.  <script type="text/javascript">
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  • <p>PYGMALION was a monster hit for the Piccadilly, as it was for theatres across Australia. After its initial season at the Piccadilly, it enjoyed several return seasons ‘by popular demand’ at other theatres in Perth’s CBD.</p>
  • <p>THE PICCADILLY THEATRE OPENING NIGHT - THE WEST AUSTRALIAN NEWSPAPER  reported on Thurs March 10, 1938 on Page 19 … THE PICCADILLY THEATRE. Official Opening Tonight. Tonight Perth’s newest cinema, the Piccadilly Theatre, which is situated above the Hay-street end of the Piccadilly Arcade, will be officially opened by the Lieutenant-Governor Sir James Mitchell. The proceeds will go to the Children’s Hospital…The special opening screen entertainment is, “I Met Him in Paris” -  I Met Him in Paris is a 1937 film made by Paramount Pictures, directed by Wesley Ruggles, written by Claude Binyon, and starring Claudette Colbert, Melvyn Douglas & Robert Young. (pictured above)</p>