CinemaTour
Cinema History Around the World
 HOME ·· CINEMAS ·· FORUM ·· LINKS ·· BOOKS
 Contact Cinematour ·· Help & Hints ·· About Cinematour
Cinematour Forum


  
my profile | my password | search | faq | forum home
  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» Cinematour Forum   » Cinema Yak   » What is the largest theatre you've been inside?

   
Author Topic: What is the largest theatre you've been inside?
Mike Law
Member

Posts: 60
From: Sacramento, CA
Registered: Jul 2003


 - posted November 21, 2003 02:34 PM      Profile for Mike Law   Email Mike Law         Edit/Delete Post 
Should make for an interesting topic... Multiplexes and megaplexes do not apply. We are talking single seaters only. Operating, shuttered, or demolished. Take a guess on the approxamite number of seats if you can too. What & where??? The Oakland Paramount with its 2998 seats is mine.

 |  IP: Logged

Eric Hooper
Member

Posts: 107
From: Santa Clara, CA
Registered: Apr 2003


 - posted November 21, 2003 03:21 PM      Profile for Eric Hooper   Email Eric Hooper         Edit/Delete Post 
In San Francisco current day today, the winner has got to be The Coronet (1200+ seats). (pictured behind me!)

I've seen pictures of The Alhambra, and it looks quite large, but I never had the chance to go there when it was open.

As for live performance - The Orpheum on Market street.

 |  IP: Logged

Roger Katz
Member

Posts: 339
From: Thomaston, CT
Registered: Feb 2003


 - posted November 21, 2003 05:18 PM      Profile for Roger Katz   Email Roger Katz         Edit/Delete Post 
Radio City Music Hall in New York City is the largest I've ever been in. It was the largest single screen movie theatre in the world with nearly 6,000 seats. I went there to see the Christmas show last November. While it was mostly a live show they did have a short 3-D movie projected on a HUGE screen beforehand, so obviously they still have all the projection equipment in working order.

 |  IP: Logged

Mike Law
Member

Posts: 60
From: Sacramento, CA
Registered: Jul 2003


 - posted November 21, 2003 06:51 PM      Profile for Mike Law   Email Mike Law         Edit/Delete Post 
Roger, here's a useless bit of trivia about RCMH that you may or may not know. The projection booth uses a two-projector setup with changeovers. Actually, there are SIX machines in the booth, but when running movies, two prints are run simultaneously on two of the machines in the event of a breakdown, sound or lamphouse problem, or film break. Being "off the screen" is pretty much nonexistant. I have a photo of the booth (I think), so let me know if you'd like to see it and I'll e it to you. Also, wasn't the seating capacity 6,200? I'm going by what Ben Hall's book says. That may have changed to accomodate handicapped access. Bad enough they get all of the good parking places-now they get all of the good seats.

 |  IP: Logged

Mark Lensenmayer
New Member

Posts: 27
From: Columbus, OH
Registered: Feb 2003


 - posted November 21, 2003 06:53 PM      Profile for Mark Lensenmayer   Email Mark Lensenmayer         Edit/Delete Post 
From the good old days:

Radio City Music Hall -- somewhere around 6,000? The greatest of them all. 5 projectors in the booth, when last I heard. In its prime, received multiple prints and the operators chose the best looking reels. This is one of the great places in the world to experience. There is no way anyone could afford to build something like this now. (This site shows the 5 projectors, and is written by former master projectionist there, Bob Endres) Radio City Music Hall

Ohio Theatre, Columbus and Palace Theatre, Columbus -- Just short of 3,000 seats each. Both are still open and the Ohio runs movies in the summer.

Dayton Mall I -- 1,100 seat beauty. My favorite theatre of all-time, now gone.

Cinema East (Columbus) -- 900 seats, running Norelco AA-II's. Flattened about 10 years ago

Colony, Cleveland OH -- Pre chopping, 1300 seats? Beautiful theatre, now chopped into a 5-plex, I believe

Seems like now anything over 500 seats seems BIG.

Sure wish I could have experienced Northpark I in Dallas.

 |  IP: Logged

Mike Law
Member

Posts: 60
From: Sacramento, CA
Registered: Jul 2003


 - posted November 21, 2003 07:11 PM      Profile for Mike Law   Email Mike Law         Edit/Delete Post 
Five projectors, I stand corrected...

Cool website-nice job Lens

 |  IP: Logged

Roger Katz
Member

Posts: 339
From: Thomaston, CT
Registered: Feb 2003


 - posted November 21, 2003 07:47 PM      Profile for Roger Katz   Email Roger Katz         Edit/Delete Post 
The largest operating single screen theatre in Connecticut which still shows movies is the Garde Arts Center in New London. It seats 1,488. Unfortunately, it is live shows most of the year. It shows movies during a two week long film festival each summer. I keep meaning to go down there once just to experience a movie in such a setting. Embarrassingly, I have never been inside the theatre even though I went to college in New London from 1994 through 1998.

 |  IP: Logged

Jeff Arellano
Senior Member

Posts: 685
From: Monterey Park, CA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted November 21, 2003 09:56 PM      Profile for Jeff Arellano   Email Jeff Arellano         Edit/Delete Post 
In Los Angeles, most large palaces are closed. I have not been in the El Capitan yet, but the Chinese in Hollywood or Village in Westwood capture biggest size for me.

 |  IP: Logged

Chuck Cook
Member

Posts: 66
From: Kentwood, MI
Registered: Apr 2003


 - posted November 22, 2003 01:26 AM      Profile for Chuck Cook   Email Chuck Cook         Edit/Delete Post 
Elk Rapids Cinema, Elk Rapids MI - 350 seats, counting the ones missing [Rolling on Floor Laughing]

 |  IP: Logged

Bill Gabel
Member

Posts: 288
From: New York, NY
Registered: Feb 2003


 - posted November 22, 2003 11:16 AM      Profile for Bill Gabel           Edit/Delete Post 
I live here in New York City, now. But I also lived in Santa Monica, California area too. I was lucky to have gotten the chance to go and work some of these theatres as a projectionist. So the largest ones for me would be. (*=Projectionist)

  • Radio City Music Hall--(5949 seats) NYC
    Shrine Auditorium--(5000+ seats) LA, CA
    Loew's 175th Street--(3444 seats) NYC
    Loew's Jersey City--(3187 seats) NJ
    Paramount--(2998 seats) Oakland, CA
    Pantages--(2812 seats) Hollywood, CA(*)
    Warner Hollywood--(2756 seats) Hollywood, CA(*)
    Wiltern--(2380 seats) LA, CA(*)
    State--(2300 seats) LA, CA(*)
    Fox Wilshire--(2296 seats) Beverly Hills, CA
    Orpheum--(2213 seats) LA, CA
    West Coast--(2110 seats) Long Beach, CA
    United Artists--(2100 seats) LA,CA
    Los Angeles--(2097 seats) LA, CA(*)
    Million Dollar--(2093 seats) LA, CA(*)
    Palace--(2000+ seats) LA, CA
    Westlake--(1946 seats) LA, CA
    Warner Downtown--(1757 seats) LA, CA
    California--(1650 seats) LA, CA
    Warner Beverly Hills--(1612 seats) Beverly Hills, CA(*)
    Village--(1535 seats) Westwood, CA(*)
    Paramount--(1435 seats) Hollywood, CA(*)
    Beverly--(1352 seats) Beverly Hills, CA
    Roxie--(1321 seats) LA, CA
    Loyola--(1248 seats) Westchester, CA
    Chinese--(1200+ seats) Hollywood, CA
    Criterion--(1200 seats) Santa Monica, CA
    Ziegfeld--(1200+ seats) NYC
    Astor--(1200+ seats) NYC
My neighborhood theatre in Santa Monica was the Criterion (1200 seats). The Warner Beverly Hills Theatre, I was the last operator to run that Art-Deco palace before it was razed. And I was the last operator in the Hollywood Pacific Theatre (aka:Warner Hollywood), before they closed their doors.
In the neighborhood I live in now the Theatre District in Times Square. If you go back to 1955. I would have these large theatres available to see movies.
  • Radio City Music Hall--(5949 seats)
    Roxy--(5886 seats)
    Capitol--(4448 seats)
    Warner--(3720 seats) aka:Strand
    Paramount--(3650 seats)
    Loew's State--(3348 seats)
    Rivoli--(2094 seats)

    Mayfair--(1734 seats)
    Palace--(1713 seats)
    Criterion--(1626 seats)
    Astor--(1135 seats)

 |  IP: Logged

Jim Rankin
(Jim passed away in December 2006)
Posts: 123
From: Milwaukee, WI
Registered: Oct 2003


 - posted November 24, 2003 09:06 AM      Profile for Jim Rankin   Email Jim Rankin         Edit/Delete Post 
I'm not much of a traveler, so the largest I've been in was the UPTOWN in Chicago in '81 with its 4,400 seats. That giant dual lobby venue is now teetering on the brink of demolition, sad to say, as it decays without any use -- and sometimes without power or heat! -- ever since then. Many attempts have been made to bring it back, but just heating the 12-story high auditorium is a costly challenge. There is an entire E-mail bulletin available called the "Uptown Advisor." To give you an idea of its size, the entire 1,800-seat PABST theater building in Milwaukee could be put on the floor without touching the ceiling! Pabst Theater

 |  IP: Logged

Eric Hooper
Member

Posts: 107
From: Santa Clara, CA
Registered: Apr 2003


 - posted November 24, 2003 09:43 AM      Profile for Eric Hooper   Email Eric Hooper         Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
Sure wish I could have experienced Northpark I in Dallas.
Me too! Esp. since General Cinema was always my favorite. I drool over the pictures on Film-Tech daily!

 |  IP: Logged

Tom Mundell
Member

Posts: 93
From: Silver Spring, MD
Registered: Nov 2003


 - posted November 24, 2003 10:32 AM      Profile for Tom Mundell   Author's Homepage   Email Tom Mundell         Edit/Delete Post 
I'll try jumping in here...

when you move away from more populated areas, single screens tend to be less exciting...I think the largest single screen I've been to had about 200 seats or so (I've been to larger, such as Radio City music hall and the Wang Theatre in Boston, but not for movies, only live events). Many had already been replaced or split up with multiplexes by the time I started frequenting the movies, so who knows what I might have missed. If you allow multiplexes, auditorium 17 at the New Brunswick 18 in NJ has about 700 seats and is probably the largest I've seen for movies.

Glad I'm not the only one to miss General Cinema, I was quite dissapointed to find out AMC was taking over!

 |  IP: Logged

Ron Newman
Member

Posts: 145
From: Somerville, MA
Registered: Jan 2005


 - posted February 21, 2005 04:42 PM      Profile for Ron Newman   Email Ron Newman         Edit/Delete Post 
Large single-auditorium theatres I've seen movies in:

Wang Center, Boston (formerly Music Hall, Metropolitan)
Paris Cinema, Boston (demolished)
Somerville Theatre, Somerville MA (before additional screens were added)
Capitol Theatre, Arlington MA (before it was subdivided)
Regent Theatre, Arlington MA
Wollaston Theatre, Quincy MA (closed indefinitely for repairs)

Fox Venice Theatre, Venice CA (closed, now a swapmeet)
Nuart Theatre, Los Angeles
Four Star Theatre, Los Angeles (closed, now a church)
Meralta Theatre, Culver City CA (demolished)
Warner, Beverly Hills CA (demolished)

Ohio Theatre, Columbus OH
RKO Palace, Columbus OH
Southern Theatre, Columbus OH
Grand Cinerama, Columbus OH (demolished)
Esquire Theatre, Columbus OH (later Carousel East, now demolished)
University Flick, Columbus OH (demolished)
Cinema East, Columbus OH (demolished)
GCC Town & Country Cinema, Whitehall OH (demolished; I think I was there a few times before it was subdivided)

Other large single-auditorium former movie theatres I've been to, but only for live shows:

Opera House, Boston (formerly Savoy, Keith Memorial)
Cutler Majestic Theatre, Boston (formerly Saxon)
Strand Theatre, Dorchester MA
Civic Theatre, Akron, Ohio
... and possibly some Broadway houses in NYC that were once movie theatres, but I don't know for sure.

The Charles Cinema in Boston was technically not a single screen, but the large upstairs auditorium was quite large (perfect for something like Gettysburg or Star Wars or Lawrence of Arabia), and had totally separate lobby, concessions, and restrooms from the two small downstairs screens. Sadly, it's closed -- turned into a conference center.

 |  IP: Logged



All times are Central  
   Close Topic    Move Topic    Delete Topic    next oldest topic   next newest topic
Hop To:

© 1995-2013 Vision Entertainment Services. All rights reserved.

Powered by Infopop Corporation
UBB.classicTM 6.3.1.2