Showing 1 - 25 of 304 comments
Jay Harvey, I have T-shirts, buttons and “programs” from “Rocky Four-The War”. I’m not sure anymore, but I think the buttons and programs were free and they only charged for the t-shirts. But that’s what I meant by other “licensed” materials. IMHO, I NEVER even considered ANY OF THIS the same as an “official roadshow program” that used to be sold during a Roadshow Engagement.
BigJoe, I don’t know the answer to your question, but you can be sure it was driven by money. I also know there were “official” souvenir programs that were planned along with a Roadshow release of a film and then there were/are “run of the mill” souvenir programs that were just licensed (by man different companies) for a fee. Sorry I can’t be of more help.
In honor of my friend, Bruce Burden, who was the house electrician at the Ambassador Theater. R.I.P.
I think that at this time a separate thread or section should be created on CT that just deals with “Motion Picture Souvenir Programs”. The only reason I bring this up now is because we’ve barely touched on this interesting subject and it has already become pretty long. With a separate thread it would be much easier for us to find what we’re looking for……just a suggestion. And while we’re on the subject of changes, the previous suggestion of a “like button” IS VERY IMPORTANT. However, I’d also like to add a “DISLIKE” button while we’re on the subject. If you’ve ever been on Facebook and wanted make your opinion known WITHOUT having to start typing a comment. Yet, your only choice is “LIKE” or select nothing and have to type a whole “COMMENT”, which as you know, can become quite long. Just as it will tell you “82 members also LIKED this ”, it could now tell you that “105 members also DISLIKED the story content”. Now you would have a better barometer of how the members REALLY feel! Just my opinion.
“robboehm on February 25, 2014 at 3:23 pm To the projectionists out there. I always maintained that the Bellerose had the largest, if not one of the largest, Cinemascope screens on Long Island because it’s proscenium was almost the entire width of the building, which was a big box. Any feedback?”
Rob, Not even close to having the largest Cinemascope screen. Sometime back in the 60’s Charlie Washburn asked me to cover the UA Hicksville (on, I believe, S. Marie Street, by Sears. They were running “West Side Story” and between the screen size (I would estimate to be at least 70 feet white area)and the actual projection throw, I REALLY thought I was IN THE PICTURE….and that was just as a projectionist.
As for the screen size itself, I’m SURE that a theatre like the Syosset (or the UA D150, which wasn’t open back then) had larger screens. I could go on, but there’s really no point without talking about a specific screen size. Back then, when The Hurley Screen Company moved from Corona, Queens, out to Farmingdale, Mel Hurley and his sister who were friends of mine, made all the custom screens I used in my home screening room. Not only did Hurley make THE BEST SCREENS, they supplied new screens to Radio City Music Hall every six months. If I recall, it was 110 feet wide (I don’t recall whether that was “white area” or “grommet to grommet”). They once gave me a list of a couple of hundred theatre’s screen sizes through out NYC & Long Island from back then. Unfortunately, I believe I gave it along with all my other documents to “The Museum Of The Moving Image” back in 1989 when I moved to Florida.
Your note on the “confusion” with respect to the Bellerose’s address is interesting. When the theatre originally opened, the theatre was considered to be in New York City and a contract was signed with Local 306. The best I can determine (since it was before my time), the IA became involved and the jurisdiction for that theatre was given to Local 640. If it were left up to the U.S. Postal Service and their “ZIP CODES”, all the families in North Shore Towers would have paid no NYC use tax and maybe not even NYC income tax. As we all know, and in the words of Leona Helmsley “Only the little people pay taxes” (I guess that means us….or at least me).
robboehm on May 5, 2014 at 9:46 am
“techman, apparently you do not recall the demolition of the Bijou, Helen Hayes and Morosco legits, three in a row, as well as the Astor some 25 years ago. Big shiny building went up which now houses the Marquis.”
My interest is in MOVIE THEATRES! When you compare how many “very special” movie theatres were destroyed or demolished, verses legitimate theaters, virtually NO LEGIT theaters were demolished (and probably NONE were destroyed.
When you say the Astor, I assume you’re referring to the old Astor and the Victoria to the right of it down the street? As for “Loew’s Astor Plaza”, that is NO GREAT LOSS! Thanks to the consent decrees beginning in 1940 onward, the Loews/MGM relationship was ended. Not only did it HURT the industry (including the independent exhibitors, it forced Loews to shut down, sell or permanently close HUNDREDS if theatres across the country. Today, ANYTHING GOES. With everything going on today, we will either wind up with NO THEATRES, or ONE COMPANY running virtually every theatre that’s left. Does a particular company or two come to mind? And finally, does ANYONE care?
This was “VERY STICKY” the night it happened. An operator at the Lynbrook stripped a gear on the intermittent of one of their Norelco AAII Todd/AO projectors (greatest projectors ever made) during the run of “Doctor Zhivago” and as a favor I ran into Manhattan to Norelco on 42nd Street to get the part. Although I got back in time, that evening’s show had to be cancelled. It wasn’t installed by Joe Kelly (the projection star of United Artists Theatres projection department), but by one of the Altec “service Engineers” they also contracted with. If you ever saw the size and strength of those gears, you would wonder how it could get stripped. According to the operator, they were using those Mylar tear-proof type leaders that aren’t supposed to break on startup….and it didn’t, it nearly pulled the projector over. Whether then or now, you would be BETTER OFF with a film break than what the alternative is. Of course with nothing more than a hard drive to store a movie, there’s no such thing as a “film break”. There’s also NO SUCH THING AS 70mm with digital projection. It makes me sad to think of what today’s generation is missing. Not only the spectacular theatres of the day, but, 70mm Roadshow type presentation. Witness how they’re now going to disgrace the memory of “Gone With The Wind” with digital showings. They that digital hard drive copy on the screen at Radio City Music Hall and let me know how it compares with film?
Mike (saps)“….the sticky spot is still there…!”
Well then you knew that they had Roadshows.
On occasion. I recall that when Loew’s Capitol was running “Doctor Zhivago”, the Lynbrook Theatre ran Roadshow with them. The same thing was true for “It’s A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World” that ran at the Syosset Theatre.
I’m sure there are many others, but I just can’t recall at the moment.
Al, Do you have links to any of these ads? I was there and I STILL don’t remember it being during an intermission (maybe I’m more senile than I think) I recall him talking about living in RVC at one time.
That same issue came up with the original Roadshow of “It’s A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World”. According to Robert Harris (who restored “Lawrence Of Arabia” and “My Fair Lady”, the more popular the picture was, the worse condition of the (70mm)negatives. When they would cut a film for general release, they would simply throw out the pieces or trims. Many of the Roadshows you might think are “original”, might have had pieces from Technicolor IB matrices or prints duped for that replacement footage, but ONLY if they had (or could find)an originally made 35mm backup prints of the Roadshow Version. At the DeMille, there was ALWAYS at least a 35mm backup version in the booth.
I remember Kirk Douglas appeared in person at Century’s Fantasy Theatre in Rockville Center at the opening of “Cast A Giant Shadow”. If you say the ad said 2:30 and 8:30, I believe it. I was going by the fact that I just never remembered an Intermission….and as BigJoe said, he doesn’t recall ever seeing a Roadshow without an Intermission….and neither do I.
“Elmer wrote the score for “Cast a Giant Shadow” too. His music was being heard at the DeMille for years!”
Yes, I’m well aware of that, I happen to be a BIG FAN of Elmer Bernstein’s work and was saddened when he passed away.
If anyone should come across a newspaper ad that shows “Cast A Giant Shadow” advertised as reserved seat “2 A Day”, I’d be interested in seeing it.
Al, I’ll have to take your word for it. However, as hard as I try I just can’t recall “2 A Day”.
Bigjoe, There’s no doubt about Hawaii being a Roadshow. They also used the full corner sign for it.
“KODAK….MAKE FILM!” -LOL
Bigjoe, (Every time I type “Bigjoe” It makes me think of “Big Sam” from “Gone With The Wind”. When he says: “Don’t you worry about a thing Miss Scarlet, Big Sam is here now….HORSE, MAKE TRACKS.-LOL)
Anyway, while I readily admit my short term memory is VERY BAD and getting worse, the doctors say I’ll be dead from the emphysema well before I end up like Ronald Reagan….lucky me. However, I can still see the big corner sign that was totally used for “Cast A Giant Shadow”. The real question was it “2 A Day”. Since my memory is shot, we can ask the next best person….Al Alvarez, I’m pretty sure he will have the answer.
As for Hawaii, that WAS a “2 A Day” Roadshow. The ONLY dispute we have there is that it was a LOSER! It did not do well and was putting people to sleep in the theatre. I liked “The Hallelujah Trail” (1965) that ran in single strip Cinerama, but, many more people HATED IT. Maybe it was the great Elmer Bernstein great music that made it GREAT and fun to watch at the Capitol.
Bigjoe, Why do you say Hawaii was the last Roadshow to have a hardcover souvenir program? I “think” you’re wrong about that, but I would have to actually research it to be absolutely certain. It’s also a technical issue since the program for “The Sound of Music” has a “soft” cover (it was only 1965, while “Hawaii” was 1966.) “The Greatest Story Ever Told” had a hard cover program, but was ALSO 1965. Then there is some confusion of what constitutes a valid “program” if the movie wasn’t a Roadshow. To me, “2 A Day” plus a couple of extra show for the weekend or Wednesday matinee.
Do you have a Program for “The Jazz Singer”? Although it “officially” opened at the WARNER THEATRE, they had private (or special, I’m not sure how to classify them)screenings at the “Winter Garden Theater” and installed all the sound equipment there just for those screenings.
I’ve never seen or run a “2 A Day” Roadshow that didn’t have an intermission. Yet, my recollection is that “Cast A Giant Shadow” WAS NOT “2 A Day” Roadshow and didn’t have an intermission. That said, I should also point out that my memory is becoming worse all the time. All these things we’re talking about I used to be able to answer like it was seared into my brain. However, recently, I can look at an actor whose name I should know like the day of the week, but just CAN’T remember it. It seems I can remember 50 years ago better than yesterday. Let me tell ya, it’s a horrible feeling. :(
Yes, it “should be a Roadshow Version” however, it’s not always possible to find all the elements from the Roadshow Version. In the case of “Cast A Giant Shadow”, it wasn’t one of the bigger hits that ran there. The only thing worse that I can recall is “Hawaii”. -lol
I remember when the Teamsters tried to organize all the Century managers. The managers originally wanted to join Local 306 (projectionists), but the NLRB said that would be a conflict.
I only worked at the Glen Oaks about a dozen times since it wasn’t my “permanent” theatre. I believe around 1967-68 that was the last time I worked at the Glen Oaks. I recall it was on New Year’s eve 1968. I ran “Dr. No” and “From Russia With Love”. Mr. D was the manager working that day.
My permanent job was in Manhattan at Walter Reade’s DeMille Theatre. It burned down on 1973 and I waited for it to be reopened. When it re-opened under “New Management” I decided to leave. I decided to go to the Prospect. Because I’m losing my memory, I can’t remember whether Ed Burns was the manager before or after Mr. D. Unlike some other projectionists, I got along with and liked BOTH Ed and Bernie. Any projectionists that didn’t get along with them probably had trouble going their job, since that was the only reason that would caused any problems with either one of them, since normally they were real nice guys.
R.I.P. – 1910-2014 It’s a very unhappy 104th birthday!
RKO, LOEW’S, BRANDT’S – MAYFAIR
WALTER READE’S DEMILLE
CenturyBill, an after thought. what was the seating capacity at the Glen Oaks?”
I’m not sure of the exact number of seats, but, I know it was OVER 600 seats (most small neighborhood theatres had 600 seats or less)because of the pay scale in the union contract. When the Glen Oaks opened they were still using the number of seats as a factor in determining the pay rate. Compared to other neighborhood theatres, like the Utopia Theatre, the Glen Oaks wasn’t as “small” as the “overview” above would have you believe. It was over 600 seats, but less than 800.
For some reason the end of the lines in my post appear to be cut off, however, you can still copy and paste the links.
As for whether the Cheyenne premiere was a press showing, there have been MANY premieres in a specific theatre only to have the actual run in a different theatre. I guess it’s just a matter of “what meaning of what the word IS….IS”.
Coate on August 4, 2014 at 2:12 pm A few weeks ago techman707 wrote: “Upon further investigation it appears I was correct. Cheyenne Autumn did have its ‘World Premiere’ at the The Lincoln Theater, 1615 Central Avenue in downtown Cheyenne, Wyoming on October 1, 1964……..”
The Lincoln Theater website claims the “world premiere” was there in October 1963, not 1964(as I had stated). However, this isn’t where I got the original info I posted to begin with. This is just another source “claiming” the “world premiere”. On the list of movies rattling around in my head, it’s just not that important to me. It’s not as though it was the premiere of “My Fair Lady”, which I can speak about since I was there.
Checkout these websites relative to the premiere.
“I wonder what will now become of this restored little gem?”
Probably the same thing that happen to ALL THE OTHER “Movie Theatre” landmarks….they get DEMOLISHED!
You’re right, it’s working sporadically. I just received 5 emails. While they all show today’s date, with the exception of your post dated July 6th, the rest were from days ago that I already saw or responded to.
They must be having an intermittent (no pun intended) problem.
I still have a few “vintage” booklets that weren’t damaged when I had a flood in my house in Florida a few years ago. Fortunately for me, my favorite (and probably the most valuable) ones were here in New York at the time. In addition, when I moved to Florida, Roadshow booklets were among many of the non-hardware things that were donated to the “Museum of the Moving Image”. I’m sorry that I donated so many things to only ONE PLACE. They misled me about how, when and the conditions under which many of the things (both hardware and manuscripts, etc.) would be displayed. I was VERY disappointed to say the least.
While I “did” have a souvenir program for Oklahoma, it too was ruined in the flood. I would guess the most valuable ones, at least to me, are The Sound Of Music, Around the World in 80 Days, My Fair Lady (given to me by Jack Warner, who was a friend of my father, when MFL opened at the Criterion, although my sister claims he gave it to her).
Although when I moved to Florida I got rid of my 35mm film collection, at the time of the flood I also discovered that I RUINED nearly half of my 16mm collection by not refrigerating them down in Florida(at least the Eastman prints). For all practical purposes, these were NEW Eastman prints that were now IN THE GARBAGE. Today, the only prints left are the Technicolor IB prints….and a few are VERY rare and valuable ones. I have replaced virtually ALL my films with Blu-ray discs that actually look (and sound) better than the 16mm prints they’re replacing on a 12foot wide scope screen using my JVC RS35 projector. At this point, I’m too sick to go downstairs into my film projection booth anyway. Now I have to determine who I’m going to donate the film to (which includes Technicolor scope print of It’s A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World). While I could have sold them, Some of the film preservationist groups will NEVER see Technicolor prints of some of these films ever again. One NEW PRINT (the print is new, but it was made in 1947 of a 1946 movie)“The Jolson Story” is a spectacular print. While they can make new Eastman prints, like the 70mm LG-blow-up Columbia made when “The Jolson Story” ran at the Ziegfeld, anyone familiar with Technicolor IB prints will tell you they CAN NEVER LOOK QUITE THE SAME OR AS GOOD AS THE REAL THING.
P.S. – Just came across another souvenir program for “PEPE”