HISTORY

Chicago’s Grand Movie Palaces

Chicago was home to dozens of movie palaces


It might seem that there’s a new mega-plex movie theater opening every few months, but there was a time when Chicago was home to dozens of grand movie palaces. When movies were the go-to entertainment, places built by people like Balaban & Katz dotted the landscape. The once-ornate Uptown Theater, one of the grandest places in the city with marble, 24-karat gold and gargoyles presiding over the lobby, could hold nearly 4,400 people, while down off Stony Island Blvd the Avalon Theatre (rechristened the New Regal) beckoned more than 2,250 people with its Moorish décor and Middle Eastern theme. Check out this fantastic slideshow from Chicago magazine in 2013 and scroll through photos above from Calumet412.com to see a variety of the movie palaces from the city’s past.

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