Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Fox Theatre

Designed by Thomas Lamb, the Fox Theatre on West Market Street opened in 1923, featuring Edmund Lowe in The Silent Command.

Fox Theatre tower in the 1920s shortly after its construction

The Fox Theatre was leased by the Milgrim chain in 1959 and purchased in 1961 and was the company's flagship theater. The company also owned the neighboring theater, the Stanton Theatre, and renamed it the Milgrim Theatre.

Outside Fox Theatre in 1956

The building was used to house the local offices of all major movie chains and included a screening room on the 17th floor, making the building the movie exhibition headquarters of Philadelphia.

Fox Theatre 1965

In March of 1980 the Fox Theatre closed after playing Star Trek: The Motion Picture. The Committee to Save Fox concluded that the repairs could be made for less than the owner's appraisal of over a million dollars.

Fox Theatre and the former Stanton Theatre, the Milgram Theatre, in the 1960s

Milgram once proposed including a triplex in the tower that now stands in its place, now home to PNC.

1979, not long before the Fox Theatre's closing

The marble balcony is now used as the communion railing at Holy Cross Catholic Church in Springfield, PA. Fox's ticket booth is in Los Angeles and its chandeliers were used in a Columbus, OH theater restoration project.

Much of the information compiled here can be found at www.cinematreasures.org.


  1. Philly has so many vacant old movie houses. San Francisco does, too. I wish someone would restore at least one of them. There's that one on Chestnut, the SamEric, that's been vacant for years.

  2. There has been a big push to restore the Sam Eric, a.k.a. The Boyd, on Chestnut.


    It was on the National Trust for Historic Preservation's 2008 list of the 11 most endangered places. Progress has kind of stalled lately due to (like everything) the economy. As far as I know it's the only original remaining movie house in Center City that hasn't been demolished or converted.