Variety (Apr 1928)

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VARIETY WEATHER BUMPS CHI; ORIENTAL "Best Girl" Helps Reviv^ MaiT^^^i^^^ Tbwii, $25,000— Monroe's $3,800 Considered Good--"ehicag<)'- Deemed Flop, $10,000 on 2d Week P 1 C T U R E S BALTO. EASES OFF; $16,000 TOWN'S BEST . — t Loud Speaker Aided Valencia's $7^00o^$15,000 for Stan- . ley—Chaplin, $5^500 Wednesday, April 4, 1928 Chicago, April 3.- In a. tough battle agaiiist weather, combined Loop grosses dropped ?27,- 000 under the previous week. CU-- mate included cpld, ra;in, snow and Most acutf' slump was at the Chi- cago Where -Big City" and a name- less stage show brought $43,500, fol- lowing Georj^e Jessel's $5?,000, This isn't a poor ligure, considermg the house average, but it's not up to Ghaney's regular rating. Another: unusual low was the . Oriental, $iJb,- 400. This is about as fai* down as, the house has ever gone. Chi- cagb,^' which started weak at the Roosevelt, fell off on its second week and collected only $10,000, Indif- ference shown, toward this native subject and it is rated a^flop here Decision may be reversed, when n. hits the neighborhoods. — ■ ^, ,„ Opening week of "My Best .Girl" at United Artists was under expec- tations, but the wea:Uier didn't help. Take was $25,000 with locaV reviews good. 'Tatent Leatber Kid'' fell |6 000 In Its third week at McVIckers to'$18,000. , "Jazz Singer" has been showing just ais much pep In Its pop run at the Orpheum as it did for $1.50 at the Garrick. Fourthyweek was $8,600, a little under the previous week. Monroe was better than ave- rage with "Why Sailors Go Wrong,: $3,800. • , ;^ , Estimates For Last Week Chicago (Publix) "The Big City'' (M-G) (4,500; 50-75). Showed most acute drop of ariy Loop house; $43,- 500 after $58,000 with Jessel on stage; Chaney film caught mild ho- tlC6S McVickers (Publix) "The Pa-tent Leather Kid" (F. N,) (2,400; 50-75) Thii'd week otf to $18,000; picture opened nioderately at $26,000. Monroe (Fox) "Why Sailors Go Wrong" (Fox) (975; 50-75). Good spot for picture and above average with $3,800; better than it sounds considering weather. » Oriental (Publix) "Burning Day- light" (F. N.) (3,300; 35-75)» Among lowest grosses house has had; $36,- . 400; Sills picture considered fair. Orpheum (Warner) "Jazz Singer (W. B.) (700; 50). Fourth week continued strong to $8,600; last week coincident with neighborhood release/ . Playhouse (Mindlin) "Prinaneri liebe" (Ufa) (600; 60-75). Straight from Germany to this arty hang- out; served with free coffee; around $3,000. Roosevelt (Publix) " C h i c a g o " (Pathe) (1,400; 50-60). Couldn t catch on here; $10,000 in second week after quiet opening at $14,000. State-Lake (Orpheum) "Freckles' <F. B. O;) (2,500; -50-76)/ Picture liked, but house not strong enough to fight weather; $16,000. United Artists (U. A.) "My Best Girl" (U. A.) (1,702; 35-75). _^Pick- . ford picture opened fairly to $25,000 and favorable notices; doing much to improve tho Plckford status in; Chi Woods (Jones) "Simba" (John- son) (1,703; 50-$1.65). Only tvvo- a-day film Jn town and getting pretty low; $7,000 in fourth week; playing on percentage and slated to leav6 this week. MINNESOTA'S NOT SO BAD IN LENT Although New House Smoth- ered Town—'Chicago' Could Not Stand Up Minneapolis, April 3, (Drawing Population, 500,000) Weather Fine New Minnesota had a strangle .hold on show business last week. House monopolized the . limelight and its $35,000 sounded quite^good. Minnesotasurely . wrecked .the other houses, State and Hennepin- Orpheum were, hit hard. The Gar- rick, Strand and Lyric also took it o?i the chih. Pantages suffered least of any of the houses, due to an especially strong screen attrac- tion, "A Girl In Every Port.',. "Rose-Marie" proved a. good enough picture at the State, but re turns were negligible. Show ^ whole sized up nicely, but folks just wouldn't come. Public also re- mained away from the Hennepln- Orpheum, with the result that the gross was one of the lowest in years. "Garden of Eden" at the Strand, provoked considerable enthusiasm and still couldn't draw. "Chicago, at the Garrick, died a miserable death in its second week. HouSe ^ _ was practically deserted throughout average at about $16,000 Baltimore; April 3 (Drawing Pop,, 750,000) Weather: Fair and Cool Attendance problem in the local flrst-rurt field h^ been something to k<?ep the managers awake nis^;^^ f01* months; Not that business has been generally bad, I" certain cases it has been exceptionally eood but it .has been spotty. .Fans are shop- ping" to a degree never evidenced ''^ll^s^t week was spotty. -Weather favorable., but t^^^ v^^^f^/i? Easter was . generally , felt.. Two houses unexpectedly came through with good results. They are the combination- Hippodrome, off color from a b. o. point in recent weeks, and the Parkway, Loew-U. ^A. fol- low-up house that hasn t hiV any high spots for quite a while. WaU fiowers" was the picture bill at the Hipp, while "The Circus," never a sell-out downtown, was a great Juvenile draw on the fringe, of the residential section; ; _ ' Elsewhere only gorso. "Feel My Piilse" not a flop, but below average at the- Century. "Night of Mys- tery," at the Stanley, unable to buck Lent. "Last Command" just fair for second week at the Valenci? aiid "Devil's Skipper" started lieht at the Rivoli, but finished rather strong. Garden was off with "Streets of Shanghai." ; Estimate for Last Week Century (Loew)—"Feel My Pulse" (Par) (2,074; 25-60); Business con- sistent to a degree; Daniels doesnt hit the high spots here,. but main- taina a fair average; Lent undoubt- edly cut in; picture pleased; they laughed, didrt't knock and didn t rave; at least $2,000 below house Providence Feels Pressure ^*Shepherd*s" $6,900 Best . Providence, April 8. (Drawing Population, 300,000) Weather: Good With all the usual breaks bowing pleasantly toward the good gross receiving lines, local nouses failed to do any more than think of the good biz tliat might have been. Season took its usual fail out of the show- gofng masses, and though the stores report a good pre-Easter draw, the- atres chilled to hardly normal. _ Thursdays radio show failed to have any decided effect on attend- ance and none of the local managers lEGION'S' lENT RECORD IN MONTREAL, $16,000 "Red Hair," $11,000—Soma Houses Letting In Children Despite 16 Age Limit Montreal, April. 3^ (Drawing Population, 600,000) Weather: Cold and Snow Bitter winds culminating in a sir- inch snow storm didn't help, grossiea last week. Every house except the Capitol had a bad time. : Couple of flttemnted to amplify the hour into capacity hockey playofCis hurt too. thetr hSises. "Legion Of the Condemned," one of I FOX. $16,500 FOR PALACE the entire seven days .... Estimates For Last Week Minnesota (F. & R.-Publix)^(4,- 100; 66) "Sporting -Goods" (Par/) and "Treasure Ships" (Publix unit). Picture only so-so and Dix no help; stage show good; ?35,00O. . _ State (F. & R.-Publix) (2,300; 60) "Rose^Marie" (M-G) and F. & R- male chorus. Picture and show liked, but new house killed business; around $7,200, bad. Garrick (F. & R.-Publix) (2,000; 60) "Chicago" (Pathe). Second week was one too many; after big initial week, patronage practically nil; around $2,000; never has; been so bad before. . ... ..„/v Strand (F. & R,-Publix) (1,500; 50) "Garden, of Eden" (U, .A.) Corinne Griffith usually a draw here, ordinarily would have done big week, but too much Minnesota; about $3,000. ' _ Lyric (F. & R.-Publlx) (1,350; 35) "Baby Mine" (M-G). Picture okay but box office very slim; around ^^Grand (F. & R.) (1,100; 25) "The Noose" (F. N.). Second loop run; about $600, fairc Hennepin-- Orpheum (Orpheum) (2,890; 50) "SlighUy Used" (W. B.) and vaude. Great show for money, but the folks remained away; un popular policy and Minnesota's com petition resulted In worst week in many, a moon; aibout $6,500.^^ ■ _ Pantages (Pantages) (l.COO; 25^ 50) "Girl In Every Port" (Fox) and vaude. Victor McLaglen big favorite here; picture scored hit and kept house in running despite Minnesota; gross only off about $600 from pre- vious week; about $6,000; remark- '^^Seventh Street (Orpheiim) (1.400; 40) -"Blood -Will Tell" .and . vaude. Business completely murdered; around $.4,000. , - • ■ Stanley (Stanley - Crandall) — "Night of Mystery" (Par) (3.600; 25- 60). Menjou. not the surefire of earlier stellar months; Week not a fair test, however; petition figured, also radio competi- tion Thursday; no great drop that night, but business ha^-iiaeiiJLUiifc ingr, and lost momentum; week well below average; -about $16,000 Majestio got the best of the going with "Shepherd of the Hills' and Mussolini- as the magnet. At, the Strand, "The Poor Nut" and "The Whip Woman" were off. while Fay s dropped under, with "The Wagon Show" not helping Walter Scanlan much in the vaude draw. "Satur- day's Children" was well received at the "Opera House, but only the big musicals of other years can roll up decent biz here. The Carlton, still offering salable "indies," rolled mer- rily onward, while the Rialto .and Uptown, with second runs, struck a, little grief. - Estimates for Last Week Majestic, (Fay) (2,600; 10-5^)-- "Shopherd of the -Hills" (F. N.). Well liked and talked about; Mussolini and Vatican Choir on Movietone made a good combo for about $0,900. Strand (Ind) (2,200; 15-50)—"The Pbor Nut" (F. N.) and "Whip Wom- an" (Col.), tfnable to ca;use Sen^i> tion; brought about $6,700. Carlton (Fay) (1,474; 10-30). Bal-- gain shows with two changes; still getting a share at $1,850. FayV (Fay) (2.000; 15-50)—"Wa- gon Show" (Par) and vaude. Pic- ture not so hot and week oiE at around $5,600. Rialto (Fay) (1,448; 10-25). Sec- ond runs suffered in off week; ex- pected drop and got about $1,450. Uptown (Ind) Hl,492; 15-50). Off the city stems and caught in the wake of downtown grief; second runs; about. $1,700. , Valencia (Loew-U. A.).—"The Last Command" (Par) (2d week) (1,500; 25-60). Fair to good average sec- ond week; never a.flapper draw atid affected by Lent; offset radio com-r petition Thursday in part by stage broadcast; about $7,000. . Hippodrome (Pearce & Scheck)-— ■Wallflowers" and K-A vaude (3,- 200; 25-50). One of thes outstanding bright spots in an off week; picture and vaude voted good and business steady with exception of Thursday Garden (Schanbergers) — ''Streets of Shanghai" (T-S) and K-Ayaude (3.200; 25-50). Business off; lowest since "Silver Valley" week; Lent largely to blame; attendance greatly affected'by Dodge hour; about $15,- ^"parkway (Loew-U. A.)—"The Cir, cus" (U. A.). Surprised by getting best second-rUri business of any picture in months; never a stand- out downtown, but got juvenile draw and grossed near $5,500. . Rivoli (Wilson Amusement CO;)— "The Devil's Skipper" (2,500; 25-60). Picture greatly liked and stage pre- sentation went over big. Willie Smith's "Maryland Revels'*: radio hurt. the best drawing cards ever put on at the Capitol, did $16,000. Every- body's scared of Holy Week. Ballyhoood as a pendant to "Wings," recently put on here at'. ■ a legit showing, "Legion" brought- all the movie fans in town to the • Capitol, Manager Dahn. let him- self Out on ; the :picture alone and ran $3,500 abOv.e : previous week^ something of a, record here for Lent, "Red Hialr" was at the Palace, Evenings were fair and matinees empty. A little over $11,000. Loew'3 . dropped $2,000 from previous week.' although "West Point"' was better than most pictures that havie been, showing here. Vaude io-galn poor, although Loew's fans. don't seera' to mind tliat. Matinees pulled dowil , gross, as at all Other houses. ■ Imperial's "Night Flyer" so-sOr but vaude best in tbwn. Neighborhood houses" are nervoua about Children's Bill. Some, haver been ref using admission to young-. s.tei-s under 16; which is their losiT since George Rotsky put on spe--.. cial children's show Saturday morn- ing which filled the Palace. Others claim April 1 l.s the day law Will be enforced; Majority awaiting' notiflcatioh from civic/ Or police au- . Ihorities. Main stem houses taking chance*-' and letting everybody in with the price. Theatre Managers' Associa- tion met late in week and discussed question from every, angle, but no* decision. Estimates For Last Week Capitol (F. P.) (2,700; 40-85)"Lej.. gion of Condemned" (Par.).. Went., over with a wallop; belief Is tha,t(,-., "Wings," preceding, helped this out;,v even matinees well attended; ho',„ presentation, just a comedy short;; - made record for any picture evei^ .. shown in Lent; $16,000. _ Palace (F. Pi) (2,700; 35-60) "Red Hair" (Par.). Held up against heavy opposition; two bands now playing here also attracted; did well to slightly better previous Week's : grosses; children's special show^ taking chance on hew i^-w enforce-., ment, put house ov^r to. about $11/^ Mi^waukee,^ril 3. |'^^Loew's (3.200; .45-76) "West Point'* (M-G). Better than average picture at this house which can seemingly. stand week after week of second rate vaude without affecting gross; latter dropped to $12,500 on poor matinees. Imperial (K, A.) (1,900; 85-80) "Night Flyer" (Pathe). . Filler td . vaude which • stood out; at $8,000 fair but a little down from previous week. ' . , Strand (U. A.) (800; 30-40) 'If I Were Single" (W. B.); "Adventure Mad" (Par ); "Boy of the Streets'^ (Col.), and "Gateway to the Moon" (Fox), Altogether, $3,000. Neighboi«hoods—poor. IMILWAUKEETAKESSLAP; NOTHING HITS $5,000 for "College," Movie- tone and Vita at Garden- Wisconsin Under $18,000 Norma took a licking; with picture to blame. House is having its up and downs. , Other Stanlfey - Crandall theatre, UolnprI—. Metropolitan, offered a Vitaphoned » u n n«o^t« "Girl from . Chicago" .and caused " H/ 0. Despite I little interest. - ,, Columbia, prize-.wlnncr with small below Its usual Shearer Short of $10,000 Washington, April 3. (White Pop., 450,000) Weather: Warm, turning sud- denly cold^ Switching to films and six acts after something. like 15 years of two-a-day straight vaude and the consequent spreading in the dallies naturally caused some interest around the K-A house. Cut admis- sion scale helped, too.^New plan received general favorable commont from scribes, but word-of-niouth had show too long, one act doing over 30 minutes in a program where ''fgatuTe"^piCtlira=lB-ahown-befpre-a;nd- aftcj- the vaude. . . . . Probable slight Increase due to added night business. Hatmees continue decidedly off. ^ . Picture houses continue to present a Study in contrasts. Palace and Fox held up. Both took punishment on week-end, but started to build balance of week. Fox, offering , A Girl in Every Port,''" had a tloup with the Government's Const Guard service for a prolog. _ ^ Earle, with a new m. -.c, Leon capacity, fell far ., i. high figure with ''The Enemy,'' but It is being held over. "40,000 Miles with Lindbergh" stressed in billing With almost equal prominence. . . Rialto died with "Loye Mo and the. World Is Mine." Estimates for Last Week ^ Collimbia (Loew), "Enemy" (M-G) (1,232; 35-50); Attracted lowest figure yet for feature to go two weeks; not $10,000; fair and held up^ Earle (Slahley-CrandaU), "Heart of Follies Girl" (F. N.) and Hyman presentation (2,300; 35-50). ■ Down to something near $8,000. . Fox (Fox),"Girl in Every Port (3,432; 35-50). Increase keeps esti n\alo within $24,000. . - Met (Stanloy - Crandall). Olrl from Chicago" (W. B. Vita) (l.ulS; 35-50)v Apparently but little inter est; probably $7,500. . ^ Palace (Locw), "Latest from Paris" (M-(3) and Publix prcsonta tlon (2,303; 36-60). Norma Shearer may -hav<v4ug up-imjsx.Lri.ttliousand -over prccodlnff week; about .$16^00. Rialto (U), "I^ve Mo and the .wSui IS Mine" (U) i'J-f) nre tn flna.1 count of about S4.000. "7th Heaven" in Topeka's Pop House Di«w Bi&^ Topeka, April 3. (Drawing Pop., 85,000) Weather: Unsettled, Snow With the exception of three well- attended performances . of "My Maryland" at the Gi:and. the week s theatre .business was nothing, to speak of. . / A feest picture trade was at the Orpheum with "7th Heaven." When the same filrii Was hero as a road show it did about the best business Of last fall's crop of these excuses for high tops. Topckans are agreeing mat, though they stayed home Thursday night to hear (Drawing Pop.^ 650,000) Weather Fair Opening the week with two days of late spring Weather, which killed Saturday and Sunday business, the weather man turned on the . blower Monday and gave the town its first blizzard of the year. Business all over town was terrible. Dodge radio hour not helping the houses. The little that did come in went to the Wisconsin and the combo houses.- The Garden -slid to its lowest gross since September, "Col- lege" being the fall goiy. Even with the first Milwaukee showing of Movietone and Lindbergh as - the talkie draw the. house failed to reach: 3io,000, Which Is considerably red. The Strand, despite heavy ad- vertising of "Bringing Up Father," failed to set the world on fire, and "Love Me and the World Is Mine" was just so-so. Stage show at the Wisconsin, its fourth anniversary, was strong, but "The Smart Set" was light as to draw. Nothing Startling Amoiig St. L. Grosses Last Week .uLB-i- -V — ^"^^ stars, they didn't hear niuch, thougn they also agree that the second of the Dodge radio programs was the better of the two.- Estimates for Last Week Jayhawk (.1.500; 40) (.Tayh.awk). Garden of Allah" not. hot enough for younger generation. "Open Estimates for Last Week Altiambra (U.), "Love Me.and the World Is Mine" (U.) (1,800; 30-50). Picture got plenty of exploitation and stage attraction was a local pusher,, but coriibo .pull resulted in a poor week; $9,200. Garden (Brln,),- "College" (U: A.) (1,200; 25-50-75). Poorest week house has had under Brin banner; showed Movietone, three Vita acts and even radioed iDodge program; Into thie red below $5,000. Majestic. (Orph.), "Coney Island" (FBO) (1,600; 10-25-40). Failed to do much drawing the past week; around $7,200, ;. Merrill (Midwesco), "Joy Girl" (Fox) (1,200; 25-50). Fair draw, but not .near what house should be doing; still In red even at slightly bettor than $5,000. Miller (Midwesco), "40.000 Miles" (M.-G.) (1.400; 25-40). Stage show and double feature movie failed; some result of two for one policy starlcd in neighborhood advertising best play $1,600 on week, ' ^ , ,^ Novelty (1,100; 40) (Crawford). Pre-Holy Wcok.buslnoH.s better than average, despite acts below average. Week's .total, $2,700. Coxy (400; 25) (lAWrcnco). ' On Tout~T<)Cs"--flnst lm-lf-;uid "AoroK.H- tho- Atlontic" Irtnt half; light cntertalnmont and that kind of business—4700. $1S.0O0. ,^ strand (Midwesco). "Bringuxg Up ■Father" (I^l.-G.) (1.200; 25-50). Two lI<>arHt dailioH gave It plenty spo-ce. but only $-1.900. . ..^ * Wisconsin (Midwesco). "Smart .Set" (M.-Cx.) (2,800; .25-35-50'-75). Konrth annivor.sary week with big nl!Uv<^ .show, but weather and other thiiiKH kept gro,<ja. below $18,000. St. Louis, April,8. (Drawing Pop., 1,000,000) Three - cornered combination of Glrcumstances-has-vhad a depressing J/ effect on Intake the past week or so, . Lent, business at the. American, (downtown) by Carroll's "Vanities" last week and Thurston the week before, and several real summer days ail counted. . No dout)t ,Bd. Lowry's absence of two weeks from ' the Anihassador. affected businesa . at that Skour.fts house, too. . Estimates for Last Week Ambassador (SKouras) (3,000;' 35-65)—"Red Hair'* (Par). Among best Clara Bow has done; $31,500..^ Grand Central (Skouras) (1,700; 50-75) — "Desired W o m a n!' and Vita (W. B.). Itather mediocre drama of the desert; $7,000. .- Loew's State (3,300; 25-35-66)— "The Gaucho" (U. A.). Fairbanks scores again. On stage, "Oriental J.azz Revue," New York production;. $28.0T)0. Missouri CSkourns) (3,800; 35- 65)-^"The Crystal Cup" (F. N;). Mackaill and Mulhall gain ho pres,- ' tlge on this one. . Fine- stage -show compensated for picture; ?13,C00. -^St: L6u iS-(-4v2S0 r35-65) =^Dressed- to Kill" (Fox). Entertaining film, also pood vaude bill. • -c^ Orpheum .-(2,200; 15-25-35-50-65) —"Lady Raffles." Another dotec- tlvo storv with society background. LOUISE BROOKS STILL EAST Louise Brooks still n-nKilns. a I visitor in New York. Her hnsband, Kddie Sutherland, i.s diiecling on Ithe coast for M-G-M.