Comments from michaele

Showing 8 comments

michaele commented about Marlow's Theater on Apr 18, 2012 at 4:06 am

I’m the author of the Murphysboro American article series about James Marlow. The theater ceased operation in 1968 and was razed the following year.

michaele commented about Liberty Theater on Apr 4, 2011 at 9:36 pm

I suspect Kerasotes installed a platter to reduce operating costs. Previously, it was a two-projector, change-over booth.

michaele commented about Liberty Theater on Apr 2, 2011 at 2:06 pm

The Liberty had a single channel, optical sound system under Kerasotes ownership. I don’t know what type of sound system is used at the Liberty today.

I’m not aware of any motion picture sound system that reproduces only two channels. “Fantasound” which was used in only a handful of theaters for the film “Fantasia” (1940) was a four-channel optical system on a separate 35mm reel; Cinerama (1952) employed a seven-channel magnetic system on a separate reel; CinemaScope (1953) used a four-channel magnetic sound-on-film system; Dolby Stereo (1975) employed a four-channel optical sound-on-film system matrixed into two tracks; and Dolby Digital and DTS employs a sound-on-film digital system.

Most every commercial theater uses an acoustically transparent material for a screen surface so loudspeakers can be placed directly behind the screen.

michaele commented about Liberty Theater on Feb 26, 2011 at 7:27 pm

A fire on October 20, 1954, caused extensive damage to the Liberty auditorium. The theater was reopened the following year after repairs and the installation of CinemaScope without it accompanying stereo sound. At that time the theater may still have been owned by the Marlow Brothers, James of M’boro and John of Herrin, Illinois. Later, the partnership was dissolved and James Marlow became the sole owner of the Liberty and M’boro’s grand, 1200-seat Marlow’s Hippodrome Theater, which opened on January 1, 1919.

The Liberty initially was known as the Tilford. I know nothing of the Star Theater, although reports indicate M’boro has five theaters in 1913; some, I’m certain, the storefront variety, which could hardly be called theaters in the full sense of the word.

Do you happen to know when the Liberty was sold to the Marlows? I’m guessing prior to 1918.

michaele commented about Liberty Theater on Feb 26, 2011 at 12:28 pm

War bonds were sold from the stage of Marlow’s Hippodrome Theater in M'boro and liberty stamps were available at the box office. Liberty stamps also may have been sold at the Liberty box office but since the Liberty originally had no stage (the theater was among the first in the country built exclusively for film exhibition), I doubt if war bonds were sold there. When I sold popcorn at the Liberty as a high school student my paychecks were drawn on a “Murphysboro Opera Company” account. The Hippodrome was later operated under the name “Murphysboro Amusement Company.” The M'boro Daily Independent newspaper and the Southern Illinoisan archives at SIU’s Morris Library are good sources for limited info.

michaele commented about Liberty Theater on Feb 6, 2011 at 8:38 am

Normally, the exhibition of classic films is not considered to be in competition with local commercial theaters and, therefore, probably would not be in violation of any agreements with the owners of local commercial theaters. The exhibition of recently released motions pictures generally is considered to be in violation of such agreements.

michaele commented about Liberty Theater on Feb 6, 2011 at 8:30 am

Installation of extremely expensive and antiquated film projectors, lamphouses, platters, etc. at the Liberty would be unnecessary, ill advised and impractical. A small digital light projector (DLP) with sufficient lumens and contrast ratio would provide an extremely large, brilliant, high resolution screen image from video tapes, DVD and Blu-ray video disks, the Internet and cable television. Such projectors are now being installed in commercial theaters throughout the nation to replace conventional film projection systems. At least one theater in Carbondale has already installed DLP projection. Such projectors also can accommodate anamorphic lenses which are required to exhibit films in their original widescreen (CinemaScope, Panavision) formats. Most DVDs and Blu-ray disks now include the anamorphic wide screen version of motion pictures.

For an authentic theater experience the Liberty also should be equipped with a digital surround sound system (Dolby, DTS), now frequently found in private homes.

Keep in mind it’s a crime to exhibit copyrighted motion pictures commercially, with or without admission being charged, via film, video tape, DVD or otherwise, without prior arrangements with copyright owners or their agents. Such arrangements generally specify that the exhibition of films in venues such as the Liberty cannot be promoted or advertised except to members of local film clubs and organizations.

michaele commented about Marlow Theatre on Jan 11, 2010 at 10:16 am

Most of the comments abover were originally posted under the Marlow’s Theater in Murphysboro and should have remained there, but were moved to the Marlow’s Theater in Herrin withnout explanation. The Marlow’s Theater in Murphysboro opened under the name “Hippodrome,” which was chiseled into the stonework on the front of the building and remained there until the building was razed.