Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Paris Theater


When the Ziegfeld closed, the Paris became Manhattan's last single-screen movie theater. Now, according to Deadline, it will vanish.

It is "expected to shutter in late July, according to the buzz on the Gotham arthouse theater circuit," they write.

Located just under Central Park, next to the Plaza Hotel, "The Paris is owned by Sheldon Solow, best known for the prestige building 9 West 57th Street. It has been booked for years by Bob Smerling, who didn’t return phone calls. The presence of throwback houses like The Paris is dependent upon the goodwill of the handful of family owned real estate companies that dominate Manhattan. That theater occupies prime real estate that could most certainly be used for other purposes and draw high rents."

This, after the recent loss of Lincoln Plaza Cinemas, speaks to two problems with this city: The rents and the rents.

Maybe someone will step up and save this one.


baseballtom said...

Wow this is really sad. The last great single screen movie theatre left in Manhattan after the Beekman and Ziegfeld closed down, this one was personally my favorite and I had hoped that it would soldier on. I have always loved it as it is with its unique programming, but, at the very least, this would be a great opportunity for Amazon or Netflix to step in and show their respect for film exhibition by purchasing the theatre and premiering some of their films there. Also, I hope people show up and buy tickets in the next month in the hopes of moving the needle in any way possible. This area has lost some great landmarks in recent years (Rizzoli, Steinway Hall) and it would be truly sad to see this beautiful theatre give way to another luxury apartment lobby or chain store.

James said...

You just knew this one would move on, didn't you? I have often looked at the Paris as a gonner for some time, only because the trend is to forget the past and just make money. It's the motivation that has changed New York from a colonial outpost to something so vast there's virtually no way to encapsulate it. The problem is, the murder rate of our past has been increasing with desperation, as the planet fills up with people and fewer resources find our tables.

I'm very sad about this, remember movie excursions there going back about 34 years. There was also a movie theater in the Plaza Hotel, two more inside Carnegie Hall, another one just across 57th Street, and the great Paramount movie theater at Columbus Circle, just to outline a few. Never mind the Ziegfeld or the Plaza Cinema (was that it?), and even that all pales in comparison to what was available before 1965, when one simply went out to the pictures at night or stayed cool in a brutal July, for 18¢, at a second-run house on 42nd Street.

All the shaming in the world can't seem to put old Manhattan together again.

JoniDawn said...

I recall going to the Paris in the mid-70's to see one of the Rolling Stones movies. Can't recall which one. I was living uptown then, taking the #4 bus down 5th. No matter what has been said, NYC during the 1970's was dangerous, fun and MAGICAL.

JimmyD said...

My only problem with The Paris is that prestige film park there for weeks, sometimes months.
Maybe if it were a rep theater (The Castro has the BEST programming), there would be more traffic? Every time I go to The Paris, there are very few others there.
It's a GORGEOUS theater. It would be a shame to lose it.

David Everitt-Carlson said...

I went to the Ziegfeld right before it closed to see Interstellar in 70mm. Awesome. It had 1000 seats on one floor. There were six of us there that night. Just glad I had the experience. Will hit the Paris this month.

meesalikeu said...

Well Whit Stillman has to stop making his occasional droll movies altogether now, because I cannot imagine watching them anywhere else.

sadhudson said...

As of this morning it has officially closed. There is a sign outside of the door and it has been removed from the City Cinemas website. I never got the chance to go as I’ve only lived here for a few years. Just really, really heartbreaking.