“Santa Claus”: The North American 70mm Engagements
“Seeing is believing”
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The 70mm Newsletter
The following is a reference / historical listing of the 70-millimeter
engagements of “Santa Claus: The Movie” in North America. These were the best
cinemas in which to experience this motion picture.
“Santa Claus” was among twenty-three confirmed first-run films released in 1985
with 70mm prints for selected engagements. The Alexander and Ilya Salkind
production and Tri-Star release — directed by Jeannot Szwarc and starring Dudley
Moore and John Lithgow — opened November 27th.
Pre-release screenings included an invitational preview on November 21st at the
Coronet in Los Angeles.
For the release of “Santa Claus”, TriStar employed the services of Lucasfilm’s
Theatre Alignment Program (TAP) to evaluate and approve the cinemas selected to
book a 70mm print.
The 70mm prints of “Santa Claus” featured full-frame imagery blown up from
anamorphic 35mm and Six-Track
Dolby Stereo (“A” encoded “baby boom” format).
Seventy-millimeter trailers for “Head Office”, “The Hitcher”, ”Iron Eagle”,
“Labyrinth”, “Rad” and “Short Circuit” circulated during the release of “Santa
Claus” and which the distributor recommended be screened with the presentation.
(Additional 70mm trailers from other studios circulated during this period as
well. Which trailers, if any, were seen during the presentations of “Santa
Claus” varied by venue and screening.)
The duration of the engagements (measured in weeks) has been included in
parenthesis following the cinema name.
Note that some of the presentations included in this listing may have been
presented in 35mm during the latter week(s) of engagement because the booking
was moved to a non-70mm-equipped auditorium within a multiplex or due to print
damage and the distributor’s unwillingness to supply a 70mm replacement. 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 the 70mm print order in time
for an opening-day delivery or the exhibitor negotiated a mid-run switch to
70mm. In these cases, any 35mm portion of the engagement (or movement out of an
HPS-4000 or THX-certified auditorium) has been included in the duration figure.
Los Angeles — UA’s Coronet 4-plex (5) [THX]
San Jose — Syufy’s Century 22 Triplex (5)
New York — UA’s Gemini Twin (5)
New York — UA’s United Artists Twin (5) [HPS-4000]
The information included in this article was principally referenced from film
industry trade publications and regional newspaper promotion.
International 70mm engagements of this title have not been accounted for in this
If you believe this article contains any errors or omissions, please
consider emailing the
author or editor.
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