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70mm Presentations in Buffalo
A Chronology of 70mm Large Format Exhibition, 1953-Present

Read more at
in70mm.com
The 70mm Newsletter
Compiled by: Michael CoateDate: 20.10.2022
What follows is a chronology of 70mm six-track stereophonic sound feature-film presentations in the Buffalo region of western New York, USA and Ontario, Canada.

The focus of this work is 5-perf 70mm feature films and the cinemas in which they were exhibited. Short subjects, 8-perf and 15-perf (IMAX, Iwerks, etc.) and Special Venue presentations have not been included (but consideration will be given to adding them in a revision).

The emphasis here is on the titles that received publicly-promoted, commercial exhibition in 70mm and their playdates. To facilitate an easy-to-reference title- and date-based layout, no details have been provided pertaining to the brand of 70mm (i.e. Todd-AO, Super Panavision, Ultra Panavision, Cinerama, D-150, etc.) or technical particulars of each presentation (i.e. O-neg source, inter-neg source, blow-up, pillarboxed, letterboxed, Dolby A, Dolby SR, five screen channels vs. three, baby boom, split surround, digital sound, etc.).

Part 1: The 70mm-Equipped Cinemas

AMHERST
Maple Ridge
Plaza-North
University

BUFFALO
Center
Century
Granada
The Regent Theatre (temporary installation for Todd-AO demonstration)
Shea’s (?)
Teck

CHEEKTOWAGA
Holiday
Thruway Mall
Walden Galleria

LACKAWANNA
Towne

NIAGARA FALLS (Ontario, Canada)
Niagara Visitor Center (Showscan)
Pyramid Place

TONAWANDA
Young St. Drive-In / I-290 Drive-In

WILLIAMSVILLE
Transit Center (IMAX)

An overview of each cinema will be provided in a forthcoming revision.

Part 2: The 70mm Presentations

Opening date YYYY-MM-DD … TITLE … Cinema (duration in weeks) [notes]

* Reserved-seat engagement (i.e. roadshow)
** Reserved-performance engagement (i.e. modified roadshow)

1953-08-08 … Todd-AO test screening … Regent

1956-08-15 … OKLAHOMA!* … Century (11)

1957-04-05 … AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS* … Century (21)
1957-10-03 … AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS* … Granada (21)

1958-02-25 … OKLAHOMA! … Granada (3)
1958-05-21 … SOUTH PACIFIC* … Century (25)
1958-12-25 … SOUTH PACIFIC* … Granada (7)

1959-02-18 … SLEEPING BEAUTY … Century (6)
1959-11-11 … PORGY AND BESS* … Granada (17)
1959-12-25 … SOLOMON AND SHEBA … Teck (9)

1960-03-15 … BEN-HUR* … Teck (40)
1960-05-05 … CAN-CAN* … Century (9)
1960-12-23 … THE ALAMO … Teck (8)

1961-03-22 … EXODUS* … Teck (12)
1961-05-04 … SPARTACUS* … Granada (12)
1961-12-21 … KING OF KINGS* … Teck (9)

1962-02-21 … EL CID* … Granada (15)
1962-03-15 … WEST SIDE STORY* … Teck (15)

1963-02-07 … MUTINY ON THE BOUNTY* … Teck (7)
1963-04-09 … LAWRENCE OF ARABIA* … Granada (20)
1963-05-29 … 55 DAYS AT PEKING … Center (4)
1963-06-26 … CLEOPATRA* … Center (26)

1964-03-25 … IT’S A MAD, MAD, MAD, MAD WORLD* … Teck (7)
1964-08-05 … CIRCUS WORLD* … Teck (5)
1964-07-10 … THE FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE … Granada (5)
1964-08-12 … MEDITERRANEAN HOLIDAY … Granada (5)
1964-12-23 … MY FAIR LADY* … Granada (38)

1965-03-31 … THE SOUND OF MUSIC* … Teck (79)
1965-08-11 … THOSE MAGNIFICENT MEN IN THEIR FLYING MACHINES* … Century (8)
1965-12-23 … THE AGONY AND THE ECSTASY* … Granada (12)

1966-02-16 … THE GREATEST STORY EVER TOLD* … Century (11)
1966-05-26 … DOCTOR ZHIVAGO* … Granada (47)
1966-09-14 … OKLAHOMA! … Century (1)
1966-12-22 … THE BIBLE* … Teck (27)

1967-03-23 … GRAND PRIX* … Century (11)
1967-04-19 … HAWAII* … Granada (18) [70mm?]
1967-11-01 … GONE WITH THE WIND* … Granada (27)
1967-12-20 … FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD* … Century (6)
1967-12-21 … CAMELOT* … Teck (15)

1968-02-01 … CUSTER OF THE WEST* … Century (5)
1968-06-19 … 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY* … Century (13)
1968-06-26 … DOCTOR DOLITTLE* … Teck (7)
1968-12-19 … ICE STATION ZEBRA* … Century (8)
1968-12-19 … STAR!* … Teck (6)

1969-05-22 … SWEET CHARITY* … Plaza-North (5)
1969-07-09 … BEN-HUR … Plaza-North (5)
1969-08-05 … KRAKATOA, EAST OF JAVA … Century (4)
1969-12-17 … GOODBYE, MR. CHIPS* … Plaza-North (9)
1969-12-17 … HELLO, DOLLY!* … Century (20)

1970-03-04 … PATTON* … Holiday (16)
1970-05-06 … 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY … Century (3)
1970-10-07 … 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY … Holiday (2)
1970-12-24 … SONG OF NORWAY* … Plaza-North (8)
1970-12-25 … RYAN’S DAUGHTER** … Granada (12)

1973-03-14 … THE SOUND OF MUSIC … Holiday (10)
1973-10-10 … THIS IS CINERAMA … Holiday (3)

1977-12-14 … CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND … Holiday (14)

1978-09-20 … BEN-HUR … Granada (1)
1978-11-03 … THE MANITOU … Holiday (2)
1978-12-01 … TOMMY … Holiday [Fri-Sat midnight]
1978-12-22 … MY FAIR LADY … Granada (3)

1979-02-07 … JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR … Granada (1)
1979-05-09 … SUPERMAN … Holiday (2)
1979-05-25 … ALIEN … Holiday (12)
1979-10-05 … SLEEPING BEAUTY … Pyramid Place (1+)
1979-12-21 … THE ROSE … Holiday (11)

1980-05-21 … THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK … Holiday (20)
1980-07-23 … MY FAIR LADY … Granada (2)
1980-08-27 … THE SOUND OF MUSIC … Granada (2)

1981-01-16 … BLACK ORPHEUS … Granada (1)
1981-04-03 … APOCALYPSE NOW … Pyramid Place (1)
1981-04-10 … SUPERMAN … Pyramid Place (1)
1981-04-17 … SLEEPING BEAUTY … Pyramid Place (1)
1981-04-24 … STAR TREK: THE MOTION PICTURE … Pyramid Place (1)
1981-05-01 … 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY … Pyramid Place (1)
1981-05-08 … THE BLACK HOLE … Pyramid Place (1)
1981-05-29 … 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY … Holiday (1)

1982-03-19 … QUEST FOR FIRE … Holiday (4)
1982-06-04 … POLTERGEIST … Holiday (18) [70mm during Weeks 3-5]
1982-10-08 … TRON … Holiday (5)

1983-06-03 … WARGAMES … Holiday (17)
1983-09-30 … BRAINSTORM … Holiday (6)

1984-05-23 … INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM … Holiday (11)
1984-12-07 … 2010 … Holiday (6)

1985-03-29 … RETURN OF THE JEDI … Holiday (3)
1985-06-21 … COCOON … University (16) [70mm?]
1985-07-10 … SILVERADO … Holiday (12)
1985-12-04 … YOUNG SHERLOCK HOLMES … University (5)

1986-03-07 … THE RIGHT STUFF … Towne (1)
1986-04-18 … THE EXORCIST … Towne (3) [Fri-Sat midnight]
1986-05-10 … TOP GUN … University [sneak preview]
1986-05-16 … TOP GUN … University (27)
1986-07-18 … ALIENS … Holiday (13)
1986-10-10 … ALIEN … Towne (4) [Fri-Sat midnight]
1986-11-26 … STAR TREK IV: THE VOYAGE HOME … University (15)

1987-06-03 … THE UNTOUCHABLES … Maple Ridge (12)
1987-06-03 … THE UNTOUCHABLES … Thruway Mall (11)

1989-05-24 … INDIANA JONES AND THE LAST CRUSADE … University (20)
1989-05-24 … INDIANA JONES AND THE LAST CRUSADE … Walden Galleria (23)
1989-09-15 … LAWRENCE OF ARABIA … Walden Galleria (7)

1990-06-15 … DICK TRACY … Holiday (16)
1990-06-15 … DICK TRACY … University (16)

1992-05-09 … FAR AND AWAY … Thruway Mall [sneak preview]
1992-05-16 … FAR AND AWAY … Thruway Mall [sneak preview]
1992-05-22 … FAR AND AWAY … Thruway Mall (7)
1992-12-25 … HOFFA … University (4)

1997-11-15 … VERTIGO … Shea’s [Classic Film Series] (70mm?)

Note that some of the titles included in this chronology may have been presented in 35mm during the latter week(s) of their engagement due to contractual terms or print damage (and the distributor’s unwillingness to supply a 70mm replacement print) or because the booking was moved to a non-70mm-equipped auditorium within a multiplex. As well, the reverse may have been true in some cases whereas a booking began with a 35mm print because the lab was unable to complete a 70mm print order in time for an opening-day delivery or the exhibitor negotiated a mid-run switch to 70mm. In such cases, any 35mm portion of the engagement has been included in the duration figure.

References: Various issues of Boxoffice, The Buffalo News, Motion Picture Exhibitor, and Variety; plus projection and sound system trade advertisements and installation records.

Special Thanks: Jim Barg, Buffalo and Erie County Public Library, John Pytlak.

If you believe this article contains any errors or omissions, please consider emailing the author or editor.

Dedicated to John Pytlak, 1948-2007
 
More in 70mm reading:

70mm Cinemas in North America

in70mm.com's list of films blown up to 70mm

70mm Engagements by Title

35mm to 70mm Engagements by Year

Large Format 7OMM Engagements

Month by month premiere list of wide gauge and 3-strip films

Chronological premiere list of major 70mm films


70mm Blow Up List

Dolby Stereo

 
  
  
  

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