Archive for the 'Movie Theaters/Marquees' Category

Movie Theater Marquees: The Evil Dead (1983)

Marquee Evil Dead 1983-1

The Prince Charles Cinema, London, 1983

The Evil Dead premiered in the UK on January 17, 1983. The photo is from “the definitive Evil Dead website,” The Book of the Dead, specifically the section on Graham Humphreys, the artist/illustrator who handled promotion of The Evil Dead and Evil Dead II in the UK. His theatrical quad posters are below. See more of Humphreys’ work at Horrorpedia.

Evil Dead Quad 1983

Evil Dead 2 Quad 1987


Movie Theater Marquees: The Exorcist (1973/1974)

Marquee Exorcist Snowball

Exorcist 1974

I don’t remember where I found the first photo, but it shows the Kallet Capitol Theatre, now Rome Capitol Theatre, in Rome, New York. Note the two Disney movies on the right side of the marquee: Snowball Express (1972), a staple at elementary schools across America throughout the 1970s, and The World’s Greatest Athlete (1973).

The second photo, from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, shows The Exorcist UK premiere at London’s Leicester Square Theatre on March 13, 1974. It’s playing with Enter the Dragon. Remember that the next time someone says movies today are just as good as they used to be.

The Exorcist remains the most unforgettably frightening movie ever made, in my opinion, although I still think Jaws is the greatest horror movie ever made. The video below shows many more marquees and premieres, as well as audience reactions to the blockbuster, including lots of fainting.

The Things We Have Lost (Part One)

Marquee Hanover Theater Penn

Borders Closing 2011

(Photos via Classic Horror Film Board and Reddit)

Movie Theater Marquees: Alien (1979)

Alien Criterion 1979

Alien Egyptian 1979

Alien Egyptian 1979-2

The first photo shows the Alien premiere at the Criterion Theater, New York, 1979. The second two are of the premiere at Grauman’s Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood.

The showing at the Egyptian was special. Many of the props, models, and even parts of the set were on display. After you stood in line for an hour or two, you got to walk through a corridor of the Nostromo to get into the lobby, and in the courtyard sat Giger’s massive “Space Jockey.” The masterpiece was promptly vandalized and had to be removed (note the hand touching it in the photo).

All of the pics below are from Lisa Morgan, who unearthed them a few years ago.

Alien Egyptian 1979-3

Alien Egyptian 1979-4

Alien Egyptian 1979-6

(Images via Bow Tie Partners, Aliens and Predators Tumblr,, and cinriter/Lisa Morgan)

UK Krull Cinema Ads, 1983

Krull Ad 1983-2

Krull Ad 1983

The art is from the UK poster by Josh Kirby. Much brighter and more intriguing than the American version.

(Images via combomphotos/Flickr)

Movie Theater Marquees: Krull and Yor, the Hunter from the Future (1983)

Krull Philly 1983

The location is Philadelphia. I don’t know the name of the theater. UPDATE (4/21/14): Howard Haas has identified it as the Goldman Theatre, which was demolished in 1984.

I have great affection for Krull. I think it’s a nifty, good-looking combination of the fantasy and sci-fi genres. As for Yor, you owe it to yourself to watch it at least once. The theme song and soundtrack are incredible. And, of course, there’s the hang glider scene.

(Image via milfodd/Flickr)

Movie Theater Marquees: Dawn of the Dead (1979)

 DOTD Marquee 1978

I don’t remember where I found the photo, unfortunately, but it’s the creepiest one I’ve got. It almost looks like a screenshot from a post-apocalyptic movie referencing another post-apocalyptic movie. What’s the figure doing? Where is everyone else? Who’s taking the photo? The only thing I can think of is that he wants to show off his DotD t-shirt under the DotD marquee.

The Hollywood Theatre was a classic. You can see a better shot of the beautiful marquee here. It closed in 1992, “doomed” by “the seedy, dilapidated state of Hollywood Boulevard.”

Also, there’s this:

DOTD 1979

Movie Theater Marquees: Friday the 13th, Don’t Go in the House, and Aliens (1980, 1986)

Friday the 13th 1980

The Warner Cinerama Theatre in New York, originally The Strand Theatre, opened in 1914. It was demolished in 1987.

Don’t Go in the House is a very low budget slasher about (the IMDb description is brutally succinct) “a victim of child abuse… who grows up to become a maniacal construction worker. He stalks women at discos, takes them home, then hangs them upside-down in a special steel-walled room and sets them on fire.” The trailer is here.

Below is the same theater seen from the opposite side. You can see a Howard the Duck poster to the left of the marquee.

I saw Aliens four or five times at the theater in the summer of ’86. It was a perfect movie then, and it’s a perfect movie now.

Aliens Marquee 1986

(Images via Jane R. Fink/Pinterest and Cinema Treasures)

Movie Theater Marquees: Night of the Living Dead (1968, 1986)

NOTLD Fulton 10-1-1968

Above: The Night of the Living Dead premiere at Pittsburgh’s Fulton Theater (now the Byham Theater) on October 1, 1968. The film was shot in rural Pittsburgh for a little over $100,000. It grossed $12 million domestically and $18 million internationally. The photo comes from The Complete Night of the Living Dead Filmbook (1985) by John Russo. I found it online at The Sweetest Psychopath.

Below: The Fulton again. According to Cinema Treasures, the photo is from 1981 or 1982, but Day of the Dead didn’t come out until 1985 (I was working in a video store at the time and remember eagerly awaiting the VHS release). You’ll see Sky Bandits on another marquee to the left. That movie came out on October 31, 1986.

The original Dead Trilogy in one sitting on Halloween in 1986? Mercy.

Dead Trilogy 1985

Movie Theater Marquees: Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979)

Star Trek Marquee 1979

Photo: Gary Fong/San Francisco Chronicle, 1979

Star Trek Marquee 1979-2

Varsity Theatre, Athens, Ohio, 1979. (Photo: Larry Gassan)

Star Trek Marquee ASM #203

From Amazing Spider-Man #203, 1980. Note the Black Hole marquee in the background.

King Frat (second photo) is an Animal House hack job: frat boys stage farting contests, light farts on fire, pull down their pants and fart at girls through car windows, and similar antics involving farts (and erections). The fact that it’s sharing a marquee with Star Trek does not say much for the perception and reception of Star Trek.

(Images via the SF Chronicle, Larry Gassan/Flickr, and The Marvel Project)




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