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Featured: Brooklyn, New York, NY – Meserole Theater

Lots of cool pictures through the link.

Hidden in a Rite Aid, Ghosts of an Old Movie Theater

Don’t let the squat little Rite Aid storefront on Manhattan Ave in Greenpoint fool you…

It has a long history. A movie theater for most of its life, you can see it below in 1928 when it was known as the Fox Meserole showing silent films (the advertised Baby Mine was made in 1928 – more info here).

Later, the Meserole was purchased by Randforce/United Artists and showed first run movies, competing with the nearby RKO Greenpoint (long gone, sadly). Below, a picture from the 1960′s:

Though it looks small from the front, the theater was actually quite large, accommodating 2,000 people on ground level and balcony seating. Here, a bird’s eye view from above shows its full size – the main entrance is beside the white truck in the upper right corner, which leads to the theater building on Lorimer.

via Nick Carr: Hidden in a Rite Aid, Ghosts of an Old Movie Theater.

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  1. Warren G. Harris

    The Meserole Theatre was built by the Small & Strausberg circuit (aka S&S), and had not previously been called the Garden (another cinema entirely, located at 742 Manhattan Avenue). When William Fox bought control of S&S, the Meserole was part of the deal. Soon after Fox went bankrupt at the onset of the Depression, the Meserole was shifted to Randforce, a circuit formed to run most of the former Fox theatres in Brooklyn. The huge Fox in downtown Brooklyn was not part of that deal, and eventually landed under the Fabian.division of Warner Bros. Theatres. Randforce was part of a holding company controlled by United Artists Theatre Circuit. In the 1970s, division names like Randforce were dropped and replaced by that of the parent..

  2. Gary Parks

    Discoveries like this are always wonderful. When planning the THS Conclave for 2008, I had hoped we could get into the former Rivoli Theatre in Berkeley, first turned into a grocery store in the 1950s, and having had a number of retail uses since then. At Conclave time, it was in-between retail tenants, and completely shuttered. It is open again, and since the 1990s, when enlightened tenants removed the dropped ceiling installed in the 50s, the whole auditorium, with many original wall and ceiling finishes intact, has been visible. A proscenium topped with sculpted lifesize mermen, sidewall pilasters with filagree grillwork in-between–are just some of the details found within the former Rivoli. The exterior still looks largely like a theatre, lacking only its vertical sign and marquee to really be complete.

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Featured: Brooklyn, New York, NY – Meserole Theater

Lots of cool pictures through the link.

Hidden in a Rite Aid, Ghosts of an Old Movie Theater

Don’t let the squat little Rite Aid storefront on Manhattan Ave in Greenpoint fool you…

It has a long history. A movie theater for most of its life, you can see it below in 1928 when it was known as the Fox Meserole showing silent films (the advertised Baby Mine was made in 1928 – more info here).

Later, the Meserole was purchased by Randforce/United Artists and showed first run movies, competing with the nearby RKO Greenpoint (long gone, sadly). Below, a picture from the 1960′s:

Though it looks small from the front, the theater was actually quite large, accommodating 2,000 people on ground level and balcony seating. Here, a bird’s eye view from above shows its full size – the main entrance is beside the white truck in the upper right corner, which leads to the theater building on Lorimer.

via Nick Carr: Hidden in a Rite Aid, Ghosts of an Old Movie Theater.

No Comments

  1. Warren G. Harris

    The Meserole Theatre was built by the Small & Strausberg circuit (aka S&S), and had not previously been called the Garden (another cinema entirely, located at 742 Manhattan Avenue). When William Fox bought control of S&S, the Meserole was part of the deal. Soon after Fox went bankrupt at the onset of the Depression, the Meserole was shifted to Randforce, a circuit formed to run most of the former Fox theatres in Brooklyn. The huge Fox in downtown Brooklyn was not part of that deal, and eventually landed under the Fabian.division of Warner Bros. Theatres. Randforce was part of a holding company controlled by United Artists Theatre Circuit. In the 1970s, division names like Randforce were dropped and replaced by that of the parent..

  2. Gary Parks

    Discoveries like this are always wonderful. When planning the THS Conclave for 2008, I had hoped we could get into the former Rivoli Theatre in Berkeley, first turned into a grocery store in the 1950s, and having had a number of retail uses since then. At Conclave time, it was in-between retail tenants, and completely shuttered. It is open again, and since the 1990s, when enlightened tenants removed the dropped ceiling installed in the 50s, the whole auditorium, with many original wall and ceiling finishes intact, has been visible. A proscenium topped with sculpted lifesize mermen, sidewall pilasters with filagree grillwork in-between–are just some of the details found within the former Rivoli. The exterior still looks largely like a theatre, lacking only its vertical sign and marquee to really be complete.

Leave a Comment

You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Current day month ye@r *

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