Ontario Theatres


As we researched film titles, gathered and compiled the information from periodicals and catalogues and various other sources, we also decided to take note of any interesting peripheral film-related content along the way, including information relating to the profusion of theatres and venues that screened films throughout Toronto and in much of Ontario. As a result, this site now includes a list of Ontario theatres––venues that helped illuminate the very films included in ECFO's filmography––to hopefully shed some light on the nature of moviegoing and the impelling business of film for this period. However, it should be noted, that researching for all turn-of-the-century theatres, and other venues that exhibited films, such as storefronts, schools, public spaces, and other locations, would take a much grander scope and seriousness of methodology deserving of such an idea. Therefore, this should be considered a work-in-progress, but one that hopefully highlights the interests and growth to which the art of film and business of motion pictures spread throughout the province of Ontario. Moving forward, we would like to include additional content relating to theatres, moviegoing, and the business of cinema in Ontario for this period.

As a result of combing through periodicals for film titles, we have gathered countless copies of newsprint on the entertainment and film happenings in various Ontario locales. Many pages of "Amusements" sections in local papers that we researched provide some insight into the world of theatres. We know that there were a handful of theatres in Toronto circa 1910 showcasing and advertising their coming attractions to include motion pictures: The Grand; Agnes St. Theatre; Majestic Music Hall; Royal Alexandra; Shea's Theatre; Star; Gayety; and the Princess. Many of these venues advertised musical, burlesque and vaudeville acts, but rarely did they boast about moving pictures, with the exception of Shea's Theatre whose ads would often include "The Kinetograph" as part of the overall bill. By 1915, the business of cinema erupts, and the number of theatres exhibiting and advertising their motion picture bill are almost too numerous to name. An article published in December of 1913 claims that 323 theatres in Ontario had film "machines run by properly instituted mechanics". That year, there were 438 film operators in all of Ontario (at least those that were registered), and 243 of those were in Toronto. Of the 323 theatres in Ontario, 83 of those operated in Toronto, a remarkable number for a population of approximately half a million; and by 1930, the number of theatres in Toronto increased slightly to a total of 92. (Toronto World Dec. 1, 1913 p.4)

To compile this list of theatres, we gleaned various sources throughout the course of the filmography project; these are just a couple examples of how some theatres were publicized in periodicals under a directory:

Above left: A 1915 list, occassionally found in The Toronto World. Above right: A 1914 directory of cinemas in Toronto, also from The Toronto World (April 12th, 1914 p.9).

We've used other sources wherever possible, like the diagram below, taken from a government report, which also provided in its findings information on seating capacity for theatres they listed:

City of Toronto

This diagram outlining theatres zones and locations in Toronto is an insert from a report investigating "An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada" by the Department of Labour, Canada. Highlighted in this report, completed by Commissioner Peter White on April 30th 1931, are groups of theatres that operated not only in Toronto but throughout the province of Ontario. Of the theatres that were investigated, the list provides, in some cases, details into some of the cinemas of small towns throughout the province and in bustling cities like Toronto. Much of what we provide in the following list of theatres stem from numerous sources, including this report, periodicals, catalogues and various online sources. We found that by the end of the 1920s, many of the theatres had either successfully transitioned from the silent era (although very slowly, if at all); were bought out (most likely by Famous Players Canadian Corpration, Ltd.); burnt down; had a change of ownership/name; or ceased running operations altogether.

While many theatres competed and eventually faded in the tumult that was the business of cinema for this era, some have thankfully survived and continue to exhibit films today; for venues that were demolished and replaced over time, we've tried to include that information wherever possible and other details that pertain to these transitions. Also included are venues and locales that had one-off screenings (i.e. the Canadian National Exhibition, townhalls, clubs, schools and parks). Many theatres were far more elaborate than others in how they advertised their coming attractions during the earliest period of this era, both in print and with their displays and posters in front of their establishments; included here are some examples from periodicals, documents and historical photographs, some of which are courtesy of several other archival institutions to which we credit and to whom we are indebted and forever thankful. To the best of our ability, we have comprised as many of the theatres that were in operation throughout this period with as much historical detail as possible, and hope to include or make changes where further research suggests.

This page comprises a list of theatres from early cinema in Ontario, up to and including 1930. Theatres marked with "??" are buildings whose build dates and/or launch of theatrical operations are unknown to us, and may not be dated prior to 1930; however, we have reasons to believe that the majority of the theatres on this list were built prior to 1930 and were screening films. The words "in operation circa" are used to describe a theatre whose date of operations or established build date are loosely known to us as a result of research done in local periodicals detailing their motion picture operations. The circa dates are not an estimate to when motion pictures started to run, but when we know they were running; that is to say they could also have been running much earlier (perhaps several years earlier) than the noted date. Further research is required for these and many of the theatres listed in order to provide exact dates to when the theatres were built, their addresses and/or when motion pictures started to screen at any of these locations which may or may not be traditional theatres (e.g. storefronts).


  • Lamb's Theatre (??) : Location: ?


  • O'Brien Theatre (1919-) : Address: 147 John St. N.


  • Trinity Hall (??) : According to an ad in the Toronto World, Aurora was the first stop made by the "national education committee" to screen films regarding industry in the Dominion.

Aurora article.


  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Location: Talbot St. E.
  • Star (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Granada Theatre (??) : Address: 41 Dunlop St. W.
  • Grand Theatre / Imperial (??) : Address: 43 Dunlop St. W.
  • Dreamland (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Strand Theatre (??) : Address: 354 Simcoe St.

Belleville (population ca. 1930 : approx. 13,000)

  • Park Theatre (??) : Location: ?
  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Address: 139 Front St. The Capitol had a seating capacity of 860.
  • Belle Theatre (??) : Address: 347 Front St. Seating capacity: 961.
  • Palace Theatre (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Carman Opera House / Griffin's (1910-1927) : Location: SW corner of East Bridge and Church Streets. It was owned by John Griffin from 1910-1927, but the exact date of when the Carman Opera House was built and operating to some extent as a picture palace is unknown.

Griffin Theatre Belleville

  • Regent Theatre (??) : Location: ? Regent had a seating capacity of 502.


  • Roma (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Star ( in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Crystal (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Heritage Theatre / Capitol (1923-2006) : Address: 86 Main St. N.

Brantford (population circa 1930 : approx. 29,440)

  • Brant Theatre / Allen / Paramount (1913-) : Address: 77-81 Dalhousie St. "The Brant and the Temple (now the Capitol) are the only theatres operating in Brantford, and Famous Players, through its subsidiary, Paramount Brantford Theatres Limited, has since enjoyed a virtual monopoly of the theatre business in that city. The operations have been very profitable. Brantford has a population of about 30,000." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.51)
  • Colonial Theatre / Rex (1910-) : Address: 16 King St.
  • Gem Theatre (closed 1915) : Address: 87 Colborne St.
  • Lyric Theatre (1908-) : Address: 156 Colborne St.
  • Temple / Capitol / Now Sanderson Centre for the Performing Arts (1919-) : Address: 88 Dalhousie St. "The Temple Theatre, now the Capitol, was acquired by Paramount Brantford Theatres Limited under an agreement of January, 1921 (Exhibit 142), between Brant Amusements Limited and Paramount Brantford Theatres Limited, and, incidental thereto, the Brant Amusements Limited transferred to the Paramount Brantford Theatres Limited a franchise or operating from Famous Players Canadian Corporation Limited, a copy of which is attached to the Exhibit." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.51) Seating capacity: 1,603.
  • Theatorium (1906-1908) : Address: 43 Colborne St.
  • Wonderland Theatre (??) : Address: 21 George St.

Brockville (population ca. 1930 : approx. 10,000)

  • Brock Theatre (1910-1913) : Location: George St. & Buell St.
  • Capitol Theatre (1913-) : Address: 131 King St. W. Seating capacity: 976.
  • Opera House / New Theatre / Regent / Civic Audiorium / and now it's the Brockville Arts Centre (built in 1858 as a town hall and market, it later became a theatre in 1880 : Address: 235 King St. West.
  • New Brockville Theatre (??) : Location: ? It was in operation from at least 1923. Seating capacity: 1,067.


  • Crystal Theatre (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Odeon Theatre (1930-1981) : Location: ?


  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Location: ?


  • Audion Theatre / Imperial (??) : Address: 13 Young St.

Carleton Place

  • Johnson Brothers (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Chapleau Amusement (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

Chatham (population circa 1930 : approx. 11,301)

  • Chatham Theatre / Capitol. : Address: 238 King St. W., Chatham, ON. "This theatre was formerly called the Capitol, and has been operated since its acquisition by Theatrical Enterprises Ltd., part of the time, up to April 10, 1930, when it was closed on the opening of the new Capitol theatre, hereinafter referred to." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.50). Seating capacity: 1,285.
  • Granada Theatre (??) : Address: ?
  • Park Theatre (??) : Address: King St.
  • Classic (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • A 1910 article in the Toronto World notes "that Chatham will have a Chautauqua theatre for high-class entertainments, legitimate drama, educational motion pictures and local concerts" with construction of the building to commence "right away". (Toronto World Nov. 24, 1910 p .3)
  • Griffin Theatre (in operation ca. 1917) : Location: ?


  • Opera House (in operation circa 1920) : According to a program dated June 9th, 1920 for the film The Right of Way.



  • Classic Theatre (1926-) : Address: 30 Silver St. An Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928.
  • Bijou (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Grand (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

Cobourg (population ca. 1930 : approx. 5,000)

  • Capitol (??) : Location: ? Owned and operated by Allen Theatre Limited, the theatre was bought out by Famous Players in 1923.


  • Gayety Theatre (1911-) : Address: 161 Hurontario St.
  • Empire (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

Cornwall (population ca. 1930 : approx. 14,000)

  • Capitol Theatre (1928-1985) : Address: 29 Second Ave. The Capitol operated jointly with the Palace Theatre under Famous Players as of January 1928, weeks later it was shut down Seating capacity: 1,261.
  • Palace Theatre (??) Address: 235 Pitt St. ?? Seating capacity: 821.
  • Crystal (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Music Hall (??) : Location: ?


  • Majestic Theatre / Roxy (1929-1961) : Address: 24 King St. W.
  • Unique Theatre / Queen (1909-1929) : Address: 18 King St. W.
  • Opera House (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Star (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Star (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Dome (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

Fenelon Falls

  • Fenelon Theatre (??) Address: 58 Colborne St. ??


Fort William (population ca. 1930 : approx. 20,541)

  • Orpheum Theatre (??) : Location: ? "This theatre is leased by Paramount Theatres Ltd., from one J.C. Murray for seven years from August 1, 1927 (Evidence p. 1313)." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.53) Seating capacity: 948.
  • Corona (??) : Location: ? "(Dance Hall). –– These premises were purchased by Famous Players from Canada Permanent Mortgage Corporation in May, 1928 (Exhibit 224). It had originally been constructed as a motion picture theatre (Evidence p. 3308) but was being used as a dance hall at the time of acquisition. Famous Players lease it occassionally. There is no regular attendant on the premises (Evidence p.3309) The conversion to a dance hall took place prior to Famous Players acquisition. The Orpheum is a first run house, and in fact, the only moving picture theatre in operation in Fort William, which has a population of about 21,000. The operation even after absorbing the loss on closed houses has been exceedinlgy. profitable." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.53).
  • Royal Theatre (??) : Location: ? "This theatre is leased from one John C. Graham by the same subsidiary of Famous Players for ten years from November 1, 1927, at a rental of $9,000 per year for the first five years and $10,000 per year for the next five years (Evidence p. 1313). It is maintained closed (Exhibit 6, p. 16)." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.53) Seating capacity: 795.

Galt (population ca. 1930 : approx. 12,686)

  • Regent Theatre (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 880. "This theatre was one of the original chain acquired in 1920 by acquisition of stock of Paramount Theatres Ltd., and is presently held by lease to Paramount Theatres Ltd., from James Scott and B. F. Bennett for five years from April 7, 1928. It is maintained closed (Exhibit 6, p. 16)." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.53)
  • Capitol (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 1,121. See ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.53)


  • Roxy Theatre / Moore's (1913 -) : Address: 25 Main St. E. Now Demolished.
  • Town Hall (??) Address: 25 Adelaide St.
  • Grimsby Park (ca. 1904) : The summer resort area in Grimsby screened films in 1904 as the below article shows:

    Grimsby Park Screening of Hiawatha

    Toronto World, August 20th, 1904 p.7


  • Lyric (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

Guelph (population ca. 1930 : approx. 18,128)

  • Capitol Theatre / Royal Opera House (1894-1953) formerly the Griffin's Opera House (??) : Address: 150 Woolwich St. (now demolished). Seating capacity: 917.
  • Regent Theatre (??) : Address: ? Seating capacity: 880. "The Regent Theatre was acquired on February 5, 1920, by purchase from famous Players Lasky Corporation of all the shares of Paramount Theatres Limited owned by Canadian Paramount Corporation (exhibit 124, and Evidence, p.1314). The present rental is $5,200, which is absorbed by the profits from the Capitol Theatre. The present lease of the Regent is from George W. Reinhart and J.H.Hollins, dated January 23, 1930, the term being five years from July 29, 1930. It will thus be seen that the theatre though maintained closed has been re-rented." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.52)
  • Royal (??) Address: 87 Macdonnell St.
  • Apollo (??) (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

Haileybury (now part of City of Temiskaming Shores; amalgamated alongside the towns of New Liskeard and Dymond.)

  • Broadway Theatre (??) : Location: ? An Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928.

Hamilton (population ca. 1930 : approx. 114,151)

  • Association Hall (??) : Location: ?
  • Capitol Theatre / Loews (1917-1971) : Address: 103 King St. E. Seating capacity: 2,317. Considered a first-run theatre.

Capitol Cinema in Hamilton

  • Empire (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Granada / Grand Opera House / Grand / Downtown : (1880-) : Address: 102 James St. Seating capacity: 1,400. As of 1930, it was still not equipped with sound.
  • Hyland Theatre / Roxy (??) Address: 190 King St. E.
  • Lyric or Century Theatre (1913-) : To be rebuilt as condominiums... Originally a 2300-seat theatre for vaudeville and motion pictures, later converted into a movie studio in 1920 and later revived as a motion picture theatre. Address: 14 Mary Street. The Moving Picture World notes: "Largest of United Chain––Seats 2,200 and Has 169-Foot Throw––Employs Twenty-one Persons. The Canadian United Theatres, Limited, with head offices in London, Ontario, control a chain of seven large theaters in Eastern Canada, three of which are devoted exclusively to the showing of high class moving pictures. The largest and best paying theater of this circuit is the Lyric of Hamilton, which has seating accommodations for 2,200 persons. It has been the policy of the company, for the past two years, to maintain this theatre as a godd moving picture house and several features of the system employed by Manager F.C. Chadwick are, to say the least, unique. The Lyric was opened late in 1913 as a vaudeville house but, in spite of the city's population of 100,000, it soon proved a failure. It was taken over by the present company in February, 1914, and since that time, when it was transformed into a picture theater, the business has increased five times. At the present time, the one vaudeville act is not even mentioned in the advertisements for the week's shows. Manager Chadwick is a great believer, according to his own admission in 'the long shows,' and provides a program of no less than thirteen reeels for the matinees each week day, for which he charges an admission of 10 cents with 5 cents for children." (The Moving Picture World January 1, 1916 vol. 27 no. 7 p.73)
  • Pantages / Palace Theatre (??) : Address: 137 King St. E. (now demolished). The Palace Theatre had a seating capacity of 2,233. Considered a first-run theatre.
  • Playhouse Theatre (1913-) : Address: 177 Sherman Ave. N.
  • Playhouse, The (??) : Address: 350 College St.
  • Queens Theatre (??) Address: 1065 Barton St E. Seating capacity: 1,054. It was considered a suburban house. Owned and operated by Mr. Frederick Guest.
  • Red Mill Theatre (1907-) : Address: 80 1/2 James St. N.
  • Regent Theatre (1918-) : Address: 150 Locke St. S.
  • Royal Theatre (??) : Address: 95 King St. W. ??
  • Savoy Theatre (1907-) : Address: 24 Merrick St. (demolished). Seating capacity: 1,229. Considered a first-run theatre. The building suffered a fire, September 1, 1909 "damage to the extent of $25,000". (The Globe and Mail. September 2, 1909 p. 2)
  • State Theatre / Towne (??) : Address: 758 Barton St. E.
  • Strand Theatre (??) : Address: 761 King St. E. (demolished)
  • Temple Theatre (1907-1924) : Address: 105 Main St. E.
  • Tivoli Theatre / Princess / Wonderland / Colonial (1908-) : Address: 110 James St. N. Seating capacity: 1,307.
  • Westdale Theatre (??) : Address: 1014 King St. W.
  • Windsor Theatre / Cinderella / Rex / Gregory (??) : Address: 16 Kenilworth Ave. N.
  • Zoetic Theatre / Lyceum / York / Mountain / Movie Palace / Music Palace (ca. 1930?) : Address: 526 Concession St.


  • Apollo (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • King George Theatre (1926-) : Address: ? Built by Joseph Giaschi, and later converted to a bowling alley.


  • Mason (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Bijou Theatre (??) : Location: ?
  • Palace Theatre / Derry's (1924-1950) : Location: ?
  • Arcade Theatre (in operation circa 1908, exact start date unknown) : Location: ?

Kenora Article

The Toronto World November 17, 1908 p.2

Kingston (population of Kingston ca. 1930 : approx. 21,000)

  • Allen, Capitol (??) : Location: ? The theatre was owned and operated by Allen Theatres Limited, until 1923 when Famous Players bought controlling interest, along with many other Allen theatres across the country. Seating capacity: 1,207.
  • Grand Theatre (1902 - ) : Address: 218 Princess St. Seating capacity: 1,078. The building was condemned by the government and was not in operation ca. 1930, and was once the asset of Trans-Canada Theatres, Limited.
  • Ideal (??) : Location: ?
  • King Edward Theatre (??) : Address: ? Seating capacity: 258 seats.
  • Orpheum Theatre (??) (in operation circa 1911) / Griffin's : Address: 250 Princess St. "Moving Picture Fire: Kingston, July 12. ––(Special).–– Damage to the extent of $2000 was done at the Orpheum Theatre by a blaze which started in the operation room as the result of a short circuit. Ned Holder, the night watchman, was found overcome with smoke and carried out by Chief Armstrong and his men. J. Lynn is manager of the house, which is owned by the Griffin Amusement Co." (Toronto World July 13, 1911 p.9) Later known as Griffin's (ca.1910-1920).
  • Princess Theatre / Ideal (in operation circa 1915): Address: 261 Princess St.
  • Tivoli Theatre / Previously the Strand (??) : Address: 262 Princess St. Seating capacity: 512 seats.
  • Wonderland Theatre (??) : Address: 222 Princess St.
  • Bijou Theatre (in operation circa 1908) : Location: ?

Kitchener (population ca. 1930 : approx. 26,600)

  • Lyric Theatre (1921-1994) : Address: 122 King St. W. Seating capacity: 1,550. Along with the Capital, the Lyric were first-run theatres, meaning they were the first to screen a particular film in their area (city of zone), in this case Kitchener, and were the only two theatres at the time operating in the city of Kitchener and deemed profitable.
  • Capitol Theatre (1924-1998) : Address: 90 King St. W. Seating capacity: 1,108. Built in 1921, by Paramount Kitchener Theatres Limited. It was considered a first-run theatre.
  • Century Theatre (1928-1961) : Address: 12 College St.
  • Grand Theatre (??) : Address: 165 King St. E.
  • Roma Theatre / New Princess / Imperial (1914-1925) : Address: 228 King St. W.
  • Star Theatre (1907-1910) : Address: 15 King St. W.
  • Star Theatre (??) : Address: 18 Queen St. S.
  • Theatorium (1907-1913) : Address: 36 King St. W.

Leamington (Windsor area)

  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Location: ? An Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928.



  • Capitol Theatre (1908-) : Address: 120 Wallace Ave N.

London (population of London ca. 1930 : approx. 70,000)

  • Capitol Theatre (1920-2002) : Address: 204 Dundas St. Seating capacity: 1,296-1,304 seats.
  • Century Theatre / Loews London (??) : Address: 194 Dundas St.
  • Empire (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Grand Theatre (??) : Location: ? It was bought out by Famous Players in 1925, then closed that same year, only to open later as a motion picture theatre in 1930. Seating capacity: 1,231seats.
  • Loew's Theatre (??) : Location: ? First run theatre with a seating capacity of 1,965 seats.
  • Opera House (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Palace Theatre (1929-) : Address: 710 Dundas St. It was a second run film house with a seating capacity of 874.
  • Patricia Theatre (??) : Address: 423 Clarence St. Seating capacity: 1,073 seats.
  • Rex Theatre (??) : Address: 580 Hamilton St. W. Seating capacity: 496 seats.
  • Savoy Theatre (??) : Address: Hamilton and Egerton
  • Unique (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Victoria Theatre (??) : Location: ?


  • Strand (??) : Location: ?


  • Strand (??) : Location: ?


  • Beaulieu (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Duncan (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Roxy Theatre / Princess (??) : Address: 156 Main St. E.


  • Beaver Theatre (??) : Address: 12 Water St. S.

Mount Forest

  • Roxy Theatre (??) : Address: 116 Main St. S.


  • Granada Theatre (??) : Address: 15 Dundas St. E.
  • Wonderland (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

New Liskeard

  • Opera House (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

Niagara Falls

  • Capitol Theatre / Queen (1913-1958) : Address: 4463 Queen St. Seating capacity: 764.
  • Princess Theatre / Web / Hollywood (1922-1978) : Address: 5956 Main St. Seating capacity: 860.
  • Princess Theatre (1908-1915) : Address: Bridge St.
  • Tivoli Theatre : (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 276.
  • Victoria (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Town Hall (??) : Location: ?

North Bay (population ca. 1930 : approx. 16,000)

  • Capitol / North Bay Arts Centre / Capitol Centre (1929 - ) : Address: 150 Main St. E. The Capitol had 1,435 seats as a first-run theatre.
  • Crystal Palace Theatre (??) : Address: 25 Main St. W.
  • Royal Theatre / North Bay Opera House (1908-1951) : Address: 269 Main St. W. Also, a first-run theatre with a seating capacity of 762.


  • Lou Price (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Uptown Theatre (1927-2002) : Address: 219 Broadway Ave.
  • Dufferin (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Orillia Opera House (1895 - ) : Address: 20 Mississaga St. W.
  • Crystal (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Crystal (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Hyland Theatre : Address: 104 King St. E.
  • Marks Theatre / Matin's (??) : Address: 21 King St. E.
  • Regent Theatre (1921 - ) : Address: 50 King St. E. Seating capacity: 1,055 (ca. 1930).
  • Martin's Theatre (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 1,065. Considered an independent house (ca. 1930).

Ottawa (population ca. 1930 : approx. 125,000)

  • Avalon Theatre / Glebe (1928-1956) : Address: 738 Bank St.
  • Bennett's Theatre / Dominion (1906-1921) : Address: 230 Sparks St.
  • Canada Theatre (1923-1926) : Location: Montreal Rd & Bradley Ave.
  • Capitol Theatre / Loews / Keiths Vaudeville (1920-1970) : Address: 90 Bank St.
  • Casino Theatre (1921-1928) : Address: 592-60 Sussex St.
  • Centre Theatre (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 1,142. First-run house.
  • Century Theatre (??) : Location: Wellington St. W. & Holland Ave.
  • Columbia Theatre / Veteran / Cinema / Nola (1914-1948) : Address: 1045 Wellington St. W.
  • Cosy Theatre (1919-1922) : Location: Montreal Rd & Ethel St.
  • Empire (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Family Theatre (? - 1922) : Address: 204 Queen St.
  • Francais (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Franklin Theatre (1923-1924) : Location: ?
  • Grand Theatre / Gowan's Opera House / Grand Opera House (1874-1913) : Address: 134 Albert St.
  • Imperial Theatre (1914-1955) : Address: 323-5 Bank St. Seating capacity: 1,091.
  • Keith's (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 2,592.
  • Regent Theatre (1915-1972) : Location: Bank St. & Sparks St. Seating capacity: 1,202. Owned and operated by Allen Theatres Limited, until 1923 when Famous Players bought controlling interest.
  • Rexy Theatre (1914-1954) : Address: 777 Somerset St. W.
  • Rialto / Phoenix (??): Address: 415 Bank St.
  • Rideau Theatre / Princess (1915-) : Address: 160 Rideau St.
  • Russell (circa 1896) : Location: ?
  • Strand Theatre / Flower (??) : Address: 1265 Bank St.

Owen Sound (population ca. 1930 : approx. 12,000+)

  • Roxy Theatre / Griffin Opera House / Griffin's / Grand Opera House (1913-) : Address: 251 Ninth St. E. Seating capacity: 711.
  • Savoy Theatre (1912-) : Address: 747 Second Ave. E. Seating capacity: 611. Closed by 1931.
  • Kilbourne Theatre (??) : Location: ?
  • Classic Theatre (??) : Location: ? The Classic was in operation from at least 1922, and very likely before that date. Seating capacity: 1,788.

Paris (population ca. 1930 : approx. 4,000+)

  • Gem (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Location: ? Owned and operated by Allen Theatres Limited until 1923, when controlling interest was bought by Famous Players. According to the aforementioned 1931 government report into the combine, this was the only theatre in town at the time.


  • Park Theatre (??) : Location: ? An Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928.

Parry Sound

  • Royal (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Rowland (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Bijou (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Balderson Theatre (1915-1958) : Address: 18 Gore St.
  • Royal (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Perth Theatre (??) : Location: ? An Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928. It competed with the Capitol Theatre in Smiths Falls, only nine miles apart.


  • Capital Theatre (??) : A first-run theatre with 1106 seats. Address: 306 George St. N. Now demolished. Seating capacity: 1,106.
  • Regent (??) : 595 seats at the time. See link for further historical details.
  • Royal Theatre (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 751.
  • Red Mill (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Grand Opera House (launched Nov. 12, 1876) seated 1500 : Location: George Street.
  • Grand Theatre (??) : Location: ? Unknown whether the Grand Theatre was the same as the Grand Opera House above, but ca. 1930, this theatre seated 1,110.


  • Grand (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Regent Theatre (1922 - ): The Regent in Picton, the heart of Prince Edward County, still continues operating to this day, as one of Ontario's oldest running cinemas. Approximate seating capacity was 350, now expanded to seat 446 comfortably. It currently runs as non-for-profit entity. Address: 226 Main St., Picton, ON.
  • Cook (in operation circa 1915) : Is this simply the Regent Theatre or a separate location? Advertised in a 1915 periodical, the 'Cook' screened films, likely owned and operated by George Cook, famous for the Regent Theatre on Main Street in Picton; is this the warehouse later turned movie house of 1922? (Supposedly a theatre/opera house in 1918). If so, we're presenting it as a separate entity to the Regent Theatre or the theatre that it was prior, despite the possibility of it being on the same lot, especially considering the 1915 date illustrating the screening of films. Further research is needed.
  • Crystal Palace (est. 1887) : Films were possibly screened here. More research is needed. Location: Fair Grounds on Main Street.
  • Bijou Opera House (ca. 1900) : Location: Formerly the Town Hall built in 1866. Is it possible that the Bijou switched locations in 1900 with adverts showing "New Bijou"?

    Above left: Picton Gazette February 23, 1900 p.8 ; Above right: Picton Gazette March 6, 1900 p.4

Port Arthur

  • Lyceum Theatre (??): "Paramount Theatres Lmited had a lease from A. J. McComber of this theatre, which was, on February 23, 1923, assigned by Paramount Theatres Limited to its 100 per cent subsidiary, Paramount Port Arthur Theatres Limited (evidence, p. 1303). The lease expired on December 24, 1929, and was not renewed, and has not since been operated" ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.53)
  • Colonial Theatre (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 991. "The Colonial was leased by Paramount Port Arthur Theatres Limited from temple Godman and George W. Godman under lease dated October 1, 1924, for seven years and was renewed for a period of eight years from October 1, 1931 (Evidence, pp. 1319-1320). This is a first run theatre in Port Arthur and in fact the only theatre now operating there. The operation has been very profitable. Port Arthur has a population of about 20,000" ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.53)

Port Colborne (population ca. 1930 : approx. 6,000)

  • Dreamland (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • King George Theatre (??) : Location: ? Owned by the Savoy Theatres Ltd., and Theatre Holding Corporation, Ltd. It had a seating capacity of 602.

Port Elgin

  • Port Elgin Cinemas (??) : Location: ?

Port Hope (population ca. 1930 : approx. 4,500)

  • Capitol Theatre (1930-) : Address: 20 Queen St. Constructed and owned by Famous Players.
  • Port Hope Opera House / Music Hall (1871-) Now closed. Address: 85 Walton St.
  • Crystal (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Regent Theatre (??) : Location: ?

Port Rowan

  • U-Kum (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

Port Stanley

  • Roxy Theatre (??) : Location: ?

Rainy River

  • Gaiety Theatre (1903 -) : Location: ?


  • O'Brien Theatre: Established in 1931and is still in operation today. Address: 334 Raglan St. S. K7V 1R5. Also known as the Renfrew.
  • Arnprior (1920s) : Owned and operated by the O'Brien Entertainment Corporation, the theatre dates back to the early 20s. Address: 147 John Street North, K7S 2N8.

Saint Thomas

  • Columbia Theatre (??) : Address: 537-9 Talbot St.
  • Granada Theatre (??) : Location: ?
  • Odeon Theatre (??) : Address: 730 Talbot St.
  • Roxy Theatre (??) : Location: ?
  • Tivoli Theatre (??) : Location: Talbot St.

Sarnia (population ca. 1930 : approx. 17,000)

  • Imperial Theatre (1919-1953) : Address: 176 Christina St. N. Seating capacity: 1,032. Not to be mistaken with the current Imperial Theatre in Sarnia.
  • Park Theatre (??) : Location: ?
  • Princess Theatre (??) : Location: ?
  • Temple Theatre (formerly Brigade Hall, Victoria Opera House, Auditorium) (??) : Location: ?
  • Odeon Theatre / Industry (??) : Address: 192 Lochiel St.
  • Crescent Theatre (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 468. Closed by Famous Players in 1930 to allow their business at the Imperial Theatre to be the only theatre operating in town.

Sault Ste. Marie (population ca. 1930 : approx. 22,000)

  • Algoma Theatre (1922-1987): Address: 654 Queen St. E. The Algoma site was purchased in 1929 and a new 1,042 seat first-run theatre was constructed soonafter.
  • Bijou Theatre (??) : Location: ?
  • Gayety Theatre (??) : Address: 551 Queen St. E.
  • Lyceum Theatre (??): Address: Brock St.
  • Orpheum Theatre (1912-1979): Address: 631 Queen St. E. The Orpheum had seating for 590.
  • Princess Theatre (1917-) : Address: 163 Gore St. The Princess had seating for 332.


  • Princess Theatre (1907-1931): Address: 3 Main St. S. Formerly the Star.


  • Strand Theatre (??) : Address: 55 Robinson St.

Sioux Lookout

  • Mayfair Theatre (??) Address: 58 Front St.

Smiths Falls (population ca. 1930 : approx. 7,000)

  • Rideau Capitol Theatre (??) : Location: Chambers St. E. & Beckwith St.
  • Princess Moving Picture Theatre (??) : Location: ? In operation at least since 1922, and part of the O'Brien Eastern Ontario Circuit.
  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Location: ? An Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928.

Smith's Falls Picture Show

Toronto World Monday 20, 1912 p.1


  • Esquire Theatre (??) : Address: 166 High St.


  • Town Hall a.k.a. Opera House (??) : Address: ?

Stoney Creek

  • Fox Theatre (??) : Address: 12 King St. E.

Stratford (population ca. 1930 : approx. 18,000)

  • Avon Theatre / Theatre Albert / Opera House / Griffin (1910-1914) / Majestic (1901-) : Address: 99 Downie St. Seating capacity: 1,198.
  • Princess (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Classic (??): Location: ? Operated as an Allen Theatre until 1923, when Famous Players acquired it.


  • Lyceum (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

Sturgeon Falls

  • Odeon Theatre (??) : Address: 227 King St.
  • Opera House (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

St. Catharines

  • Town Cinemas (1913) : Address: 280 Saint Paul St., later known as the Griffin Opera House, Palace.
  • Hippodrome Theatre (1907-1921): Address: 176 Saint Paul St.
  • Capitol Theatre (est. 1920) : Later demolished and also known as the Allen. Address: 264 Saint Paul St. Seating capacity: 1,180. "...owned by the Allens St. Catharines Theatre Ltd., and leased by Famous Players, is a first run house, as is also the King George which is run in opposition to the Capitol. The Capitol and the King George are the only theatres in St. Catharines in which sound equipment is installed. St. Catharines has a population of about 25,000." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.50). Owned and operated by Allen Theatres Limited, it was bought out by Famous Players in 1923.
  • Bijou Theater (??) : Location: ?
  • Palace Theatre (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 1,324. "This theatre was acquired on March 11, 1925, and was first closed on May 29, 1926. It was open occasionally and for part of the week only, at various periods, until July 27, 1929, since when it has only been open two days in October, 1929, for the Dumbells; one day for Maurice Colbourne; and one day on which it was rented. The Dumbells and Maurice Colbourne present road shows." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.50)
  • Griffin's Family (ca.1908-1916) : Location: ?
  • Grand Opera House (??) : Location: ?
  • King George Theatre (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 837.

St. Mary's

  • Pleasant Hour (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

St. Thomas

  • Royal (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?

Sudbury (population ca. 1930 : approx. 20,000)

  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Address: 66 Cedar St. Seating capacity: 1,419.
  • Century Theatre (??) : Address: 16 Lisgar St.
  • Grand Theatre / Grand Opera House / Empire (1908-): Address: 28 Elgin St. The Grand Opera House had 869 seats.
  • Opera House (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Pastime (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Princess Theatre (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 490.
  • Regent Theatre (??) : Location: ? The Regent had 544-554 seats.

Temiskaming Shores

Thunder Bay

  • Lyceum Theatre (est. 1909) : Address: 20 Cumberland St. N.
  • Orpheum Theatre (est. 1912) : Address: Victoria Ave & Archibald St.
  • Royal Theatre (est. 1914) : Address: 407 Victoria Ave. E.


  • Royal (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Royal (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


Toronto (including suburban areas Mount Dennis and New Toronto, as well as North Toronto)

  • Ace Theatre / Photodrome (established in 1915) : Address: 39 Queen St. W. (City Hall Square) Seating capacity: 391. Not a first-run theatre.
  • Ace Theatre / New Onoka / Iola (in operation circa 1913) / Regal : established in 1913. Address: 605 Danforth Ave., near Gough Ave.
  • Academy Theatre (in operation circa 1913) : Address: 1246-5 Bloor St. W., S. Bloom, Jr. Manager (1913).
  • Adanac Theatre (in operation circa 1919) : Location: Toronto? Queen St. W.?
  • Adelphi Theatre (??) / Cum-Bac Theatre (in operation circa 1913) : (Manager: A. Bailie). Address: 1008 Dovercourt Rd. (near Hallam)
  • Alexandria (in operation circa 1915) : Location : Danforth Ave.
  • Alhambra Theatre (1910?) / Baronet / Eve: established 1920? Address: 568 Bloor St. W., in close proximity to Madison and Bloor Theatre. Acquired by Famous Players on Feb. 5, 1920, and considered a second run theatre. It had seating for 1,126.
  • Amusu Theatre (??) (in operation circa 1919): Location: Toronto?
  • Apollo Theatre / Crystal (??) : Address: 2901 Dundas St. W. (Junction area).
  • Arena, The (??) : Location: Mutual St. b/w Shuter & Dundas.
  • Association Hall (in operation circa 1906 -) : Location: Yonge and McGill streets; sometimes confused with West Association Hall at Queen and Dovercourt. The London Bioscope Company of London, England made an appearance here March 6th, 1906. (The Toronto Daily News March 6, 1906 p.2)
  • Aster Theatre or Astor (in operation circa 1915) : Location: corner of Dundas and Arthur.
  • Aster Theatre (1928-1942?) : Location: Ossington and Dundas
  • Avon Theatre / Child's Theatre / King's Playhouse (est. 1915) : Location: 1092 Queen St. W., near Dovercourt ??
  • Beach Theatre (1919-1970) : Location: The Beaches, near Queen and Waverley. An Allen Theatre until 1923 when Famous Players acquired controlling interest. Address: 1971 Queen St. East. Built as the Allen. Seating capacity circa 1930: 1,537. It was a first run theatre.
  • Beaver Theatre (1913-1961) : Address: 2942 Dundas St. W. (Junction area). Was this theatre also known as Allen's Beaver Theatre? The theatre was owned by Allen Theatres Limited until 1923, when Famous Players bought controlling interest of this and many other Allen theatres. Seating capacity: 1142. Admission prices were reduced to 22 cents from 30, circa 1930.

Click for full view.Click for full view.

The Beaver Theatre in the Junction, circa 1930. Advertised as "Toronto's Leading Motion Picture and Vaudeville Theatre" in 1913, including both the "latest Films and up-to-date Vaudeville Acts". Also, as advertised in December of 1913, the program changed "twice weekly".

  • Beaver Theatre (??) : Location: (not in the Junction ?) Was there a second Beaver Theatre in Toronto, originally operated by B. & F. Theatres Limited, later ending their stake in the company in 1926 when Famous Players bought controlling interest?
  • Belmont (in operation circa 1915) : Address : 1217 St. Clair Avenue.
  • Bedford Theatre / Park Theatre in 1949 (1921-1984): Location: Yonge and Lawrence. Seat capacity: 847 ( or 954 according to the Alleged Combine report, p.80). Considered a fifth-run theatre.
  • Big Nickel / Rio Theatre / National (1913-1991) : Address: 373-376 Yonge St. (near Gerrard) approximate seating for 600.
  • Bijou (circa 1896) : Temporary location for film screenings?
  • Bloor Theatre (1919-closed 1957 as a movie theatre) : Location: Directly across from the Madison Theatre, what is now Bloor Hot Docs Cinema, and also opposite of the Alhambra. Address: 529 Bloor St. W. It had a seating capacity of 567. This was an Allen Theatre. It is now the home of Lee's Palace, a music venue. Designed by Detroit architecture firm Howard Crane.

  • Bohemian Theatre (circa 1914) : Location: Corner of Yonge and Elm Streets.

  • Bonita (circa 1911) / Athenium / Krishna / Gerrard / Gerrard Cinema / Sri Lakshmi / Sun Wah / Projection Booth Cinema / now the Big Picture Cinema : Address: 1035 Gerrard St. E. Seating capacity: 428.
  • Bloor Palace (in operation circa 1915) : Address 1008 Bloor West. Seating capacity: approx. 643 seats
  • Blue Bell, Blue Belle or Bluebell Theatre (circa 1913) : Address: 309 Parliament St. (just below Wilton) south of Dundas. M. Gebirtig (also spelled Manuel Gebertig) Prop. and Manager (1913). Seating capacity: 613.
  • Bond Lake (??) : Location: Northern Toronto. "Summer Nights" at Bond Lake were home to films!
  • Brighton Theatre (??) : Address: 127 Roncesvalles Ave. Seating capacity: approx. 418
  • Canadian National Exhibition Grounds (C.N.E.) :

This photo was likely taken at the Toronto premiere of the Lumiere device in 1896 at the exhibition grounds during what was then called the Toronto Industrial Exhibition, later the Canadian National Exhibition. However, the device also showed in '97 and '98, so this may have been taken then. H. J. Hill, manager of the exhibition showcased Lumiere's Cinematographe on September 1st, 1896 and then later took the device to screen at a storefront on Yonge the following month. Later, upon having signed an agreement allowing him to take the device across Ontario, Hill became a travelling showman screening many worldly and far-off scenics, from town to town. The Cinematograph's inaugural launch at The Toronto Industrial Exposition commenced on August 31, coinciding with the launch of the Vitascope at Robinson's Musee, both Toronto firsts.

  • Capital Theatre (1924-1998) : 2492 Yonge St., near Castlefield? Seating capacity: approx. 1079 (more research is needed)
  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Location: New Toronto (between Mimico and Long Branch in the SW portion of the Greater Toronto Area) in what is now lower Etobicoke. New Toronto had a population of approximately 6,000 ca. 1930.
  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Location: North Toronto, on Yonge St. Seating capacity: 1,165. It was a first run theatre, and in ca. 1930, its only competitior in the area was the Bedford Theatre. Is this theatre the same as the one near Castlefield or Eglinton, whose seating capacity was slightly under 1,165?
  • Capitol Fine Arts Theatre? (1923-1998): Location: Yonge and Eglinton. 2294 Yonge St.? Seating capacity: 1026.
  • Carlton Theatre (1919 or 1930-1954) Address: 509 Parliament St.
  • Casino (storefront ca. 1907) : Address: 221 Yonge St.
  • Central Tech High School: Address: 725 Bathurst St.
  • Chateau (in operation circa 1915) : Address : 530 (or 550?) Queen St. West., near Bathurst. Seating capacity: approx. 330.
  • Christie Theatre (opened 1919): Address: 665 St. Clair Ave. (B. & F. Theatres Limited, Toronto).
  • Classic Theatre (??) : Location: ? (B. & F. Theatres Limited, Toronto)
  • Clyde Theatre? / Avalon Theatre? (1926-1955) : 2923 Danforth Ave., west of Victoria Park.
  • Coliseum (in operation circa 1915) : Address 2215 Queen St. E.
  • Colonial Theatre / Bay Theatre (in operation circa 1910) : established 1909 and later closed in 1965 (later demolished). Location: SE corner of Queen and Bay Sts. "45 West Queen".
    • A first-run theatre that boasted in a 1913 advert: "SHOWING SIX (6) COMPLETE MOTION PLAYS FOR THE FIRST TIME IN CANADA ; It's cool when shopping---Come in and rest yourself". Matinees were 5 cents, evenings were 10 cents, in the summer of 1913.
  • Columbus Hall (??) : Location: ?
  • College Theatre (1921-) : Address: 960 College St. (Dovercourt area) built as an Allen Theatre. Seating capacity: 1,518 seats.
  • Comique Theatre (circa 1914) : 279 Yonge St. Below photo of the Comique Theatre circa 1910 courtesy City of Toronto Archives (Fonds 1244 ; Item Number 0320)

  • Convocation Hall : Location: University of Toronto.
  • Cosmopolitan Theatre (??) : 324 Yonge St. near Gould. Below photo of Cosmopolitan Theatre circa 1920 courtesy of Archives of Ontario (Fonds 4436; Item Number 4436-0-0-0-153).
  • Criterion Theatre (in operation circa 1913) : Referred to as the 'Original West End Theatre'. Location: 1182 Queen St. W. Corner Northcote Ave.
  • Crescent Theatre (??) : Location: Dundas & Roncesvalles
  • Crown Theatre (1916-1956) : Address: 587-91 Gerrard St. E., (corner of Broadview). Seating capacity: 861. It was considered a first-run theatre, "until the Palace Theatre was built, when it was required to run pictures after that theatre." ('Alleged Combine" p. 70). The investigation on the alleged combine goes on to say that the theatre was later forced to become a fifth or sixth run theatre.
  • Crystal Palace (est. 1860?) : Location: King Street West, later moved to CNE grounds, destroyed in 1906?
  • Crystal Palace (ca. 1907) Originally the Lyceum (storefront ca. 1906) : Address: 141 Yonge St. (opposite Temperance Street). Below photo of the Crystal Palace courtesy Archives of Ontario (Fonds 4436; Item F4436-0-0-0171).

  • Crystal Theatre / likely the Crystal Palace (in operation ca. 1908, exact launch unknown) : Location: Near Richmond and Yonge Street? (see article: Toronto World Sept 2, 1908 p.12) The below article creates some confusion regarding a Crystal theatre that could be the Crystal Palace mentioned below on Yonge St., close to Temperance.

  • Crystal Theatre (??) : Location: Junction. According to the report on the investigation of an alleged combine in the motion picture industry, there was a Crystal theatre situated on Dundas Street W., "close to the Beaver and the Mavety theatres" in the Junction area. Admission prices were reduced to 25 cents from 30, circa 1930 and was remodelled in the summer of 1930, including the use of a sound projector. Seating capacity: 563.
  • Cum C (in operation circa 1915) : Location: Queen West.
  • Danforth Music Hall (1919-) : Address: 147 Danforth Ave. According to the "Alleged Combine" report, the Danforth Theatre had a seating capacity of 1,36 as was considered a first-run theatre.
  • Danforth East (??) : Address: 2714 Danforth Ave. Later became the Grover Theatre ("Alleged Combine" p.68)
  • Duchess Theatre / Centre Theatre (1915-) Now demolished. Address: 722 Dundas St. W.
  • Duchess (in operation circa 1915) : Location Arthur and Markham. This location was taken from an advertisement; however, it's likely that this theatre is the Duchess Theatre noted above. Arthur (street or road?) cannot be found and 722 Dundas is close to Markham St.
  • Eastwood Theatre (circa 1920s?) : Address: 1430 Gerrard? Seating capacity of 905. It was considered a fourth-run theatre.
  • Eclipse Theatre : Address: corner of Gerrard and Parliament; east side of Parliament, south of Gerrard. Address: 887-889 Parliament St.
    • A 1913 advertisement reads: "The big house, with the big program, and the only house in the city running Six Special Features per week, new feature daily. None but the best subjects procurable. 5-piece orchestra. Courteous attendance. Come and be with the crowd." L. Fieghen, Prop and Manager (1913). Seating capacity: 596 (ca. 1930).
  • Elgin & Loew's Winter Garden Theatre Centre (1913-) : Address: 189 Yonge St. Seating capacity: 2,088.
  • Empire Theatre (1919?) / Imperial / Rialto (1915?) / Palton (1915) : Address: 408 Queen St. E.
  • Empress Theatre (??) : Address: 317 Yonge St.
  • Esquire Theatre / Lyndhurst (1926-1955) : Address : 2290 Bloor St. W. Seating capacity: 499.
  • Fairyland (in operation circa 1914) : Address 405 Dundas, near Queen. "5000 ft. of film at every performance, showing the newest and best pictures." (Toronto World, Sun. Aug. 1, 1913 p.3) R.H. Burke, Prop. and Manager (1913).
  • Family Theatre (circa 1920) : Address: 75 Queen St. E., near Queen and Lee streets. Below is an architectural drawing of the theatre:

  • Fox Theatre / Pastime / Prince Edward (1914–) : Address: 2236 Queen St. E. Near Queen St. and Beach Ave.
  • Garden Theatre / Cinema Lumiere (1912-1967) : Address: 290 College St. Seating capacity: 567.

A 1914 ad (left) featuring some of the coming attractions, pricing and featured programs. Located near the corner of College and Spadina, the Garden Theatre often advertised and produced some of the more elaborate and detailed adverts in contemporary periodicals and usually taking up more of the page than their competitors, aside from Shea's Theatre and The Strand, both of whom advertised motion pictures often and with equally detailed and sizeable adverts. The theatre was known for its famous rooftop as seen above.

  • Gayety Theatre (circa 1910) : Location: ?
  • Gem Theatre (in operation ca. 1916) : Address: 1585 Dundas St. W. Also known as the Dundas Playhouse and Brock. "The Gem theater of this city has been granted a permit by the city to enlarge its seating capacity, although the uilding in question does not comfrom to the civic by-law which requires fireproof constuction for houses with over 500 seats. Leniency was exercised by the city authorities, however, because of the existence of several good exits." (Moving Picture World Mar. 4, 1916, vol. 27 no.9 p.1505)
  • Gem (in operation circa 1915) : Address 348 Broadview.
  • Gerrard Theatre (??) : Location: ? (B. & F. Theatres Limited, Toronto)
  • Grand (??) (sometimes referred to as The Grand) : Is this in reference to The Opera House?
  • Grand Opera House (built 1874, demolished 1927) : Originally a concert hall and vaudevillean hub, the Grand Opera House would also exhibit films during the silent era. It has the distinction of showcasing the "Kinetographe" (also spelled Kinetograph) for the first time in Toronto. Peter Morris in his book "Embattled Shadows: A History of Canadian Cinema 1895-1939" believes the device to be a spinoff of Lumiere's Cinematograph or simply the device itself. Shea's Theatre would end many of their advertisements noting the Kinetograph as part of their bill for years. The machine was described as "the latest and most improved combination of photography, electricity, and life". In what appears to be an aspersion to the other various photographic machines that had seen their debuts in Toronto a month prior, the same article notes, "Of all the inventions that electricity and photography have given us, the kinematographe stands pre-eminent. Compared to it, the x-rays and all the other 'scopes and 'graphs are as naught. (The Daily Mail and Empire Oct. 3, 1896 p.5) The building is also known for its famous owner Ambrose Small and the mystery surrounding his death. Address: 11 Adelaide St. W.
    • The Grand Opera House: photo (below left) taken in 1921 courtesy of City of Toronto Archives (Fonds 1231, Item 843). Photo (below right) courtesy of City of Toronto Archives, (Fonds 1478, Item 26).

  • Grange Theatre (??) : Location: Toronto.
  • Grant Theatre (1930-1956): Now demonlished. Address: 522 Oakwood St.
  • Greenwood Theatre (in operation circa 1913) / Classic Theatre (circa 1914) : Address: 1275 Gerrard Street E., at Greenwood Avenue. W.J. Liscombe Manager (1913). "FEATURES ARE ALWAYS NEW, INTERESTING AND HIGHLY INSTRUCTIVE." Directly opposite of the Classic Theatre.
  • Griffin's Agnes St. Theatre (1909-) : Address: 72 Agnes St. Owned by John Griffin 1909-1910.

A 1909 Toronto World advert for Griffin's Agnes St. Theatre.

  • Griffin's Hippodrome (storefront, opened 1907) : Address: 219 Yonge St. Owned by John Griffin from 1907-1916, remodeled ca. 1915. (Moore, SUNY 2008)
  • Griffin's Majestic (1910) : Location: 25 Adelaide W. Owned by John Griffin 1910-1915.
  • Grimsby Park (??) : Location: Towards the Hamiltion region of southern Ontario. The park was once home to an Ontario Amusement Park which screened films during the summer months, although it's unclear whether the films were screened outdoors (likely) or at the Lakeview Hotel or Park House.

  • Grover Theatre (??) : Address: 2714 Danforth Ave. Also known as the Danforth East ("Alleged Combine" p. 68).
  • Guild Theatre (1915-): Address: 1275 Gerrard St. E.
  • Hanlan's Point and 'The Movie Grove':
  • H.H. Lambin's Theatre (circa 1897-) : Location: ?
  • Hillcrest Theatre (??) : Address: 285 Christie St.
  • His Majesty's Theatre (1914-): Scheduled to be open April 18th it was delayed Address: 780-782 Yonge St. (south of Bloor)
  • Hollywood Theatre (1930-1999) : Address: 1519 Yonge St.
  • H.J. Hill's storefront on 96 Yonge St., showcased the Cinematograph, across from Robinson's Musee Theatre, after a successful yet short run at the Toronto Industrial Exhibition (now known as the C.N.E.). As an 1896 ad reveals (below), the Cinematographe was shown on September 23, 1896, while the Vitascope had already been screening since August 31 at Robinson's Musee.

    Left: (Daily Mail and Empire September 21, 1896 p.5) Right: (Daily Mail and Empire September 29, 1896 p.5)

  • Idle Hour Theatre (in operation circa 1913-15) : Address: 364 Queen St. E., near Parliament St.
    • In a 1914 advertisement, the theatre suggests their "New Motor Generator Produces Absolute Flickerless Projection".
  • Ideal Theatre (in operation circa 1913) : Location: Main Street and East Toronto. M. Woods Prop.
  • Joy Theatre / Rex (??) : Address: 1130 Queen St. E.
  • Kent Theatre / Queen's Royal (circa 1914) / Beverly : Address: 1488A Yonge St. Seating capacity of 538.
  • Kenwood Theatre (1930-1957) : Address: 962 Bloor St. W.
  • "King George" Theatre (circa 1913) : Location: Bloor and Bathurst. "Owned and controlled by Motion Plays Limited" along with the "Royal George" Theatre at St. Clair Ave. and Dufferin.
  • King Theatre / Kino / Studio (1914-later demolished): Address: 565 College St.
  • Kum-Bac Theatre (??) : Address: 1012 Dovercourt Road
  • Kum-C Theatre (??) : Address: 1288 Queen St. W.
  • La Reta Theatre (in operation circa 1913-1914) : Location: corner of Gerrard St. and Pape.
  • La Salle Theatre / Liberty (1928-?) : Address: 526-8 Dundas Street W.
  • Lansdowne Theatre / Park Theatre (??) : Address: 683 Lansdowne Ave.

An advert for the Park Theatre. Toronto World January 25, 1914, p.8

  • Long Branch Theatorium (??) : Location: Long Branch, a suburb of Toronto. Were films screened here?
  • Lyric Theatre (1909–) : Location: Agnes and Teraulay Streets.
  • Madison Picture Palace (1913-): also known as Midtown, Capri, Eden and Bloor Cinema. Currenlty, it is home to the Bloor Hot Docs Festival with year-round documentary screenings, and after some recent renovations, it is now called Bloor Hot Docs Cinema. Address: 506 Bloor St. W. Below photo of the Madison in 1919 courtesy City of Toronto Archives (Fonds 1231 ; Item Number 800).

  • Maple Leaf Theatre (in operation circa 1913-14) : Address: 250 Danforth Ave. (Opposite Logan)
  • Maple Leaf Theatre (circa 1913) : Address: 94 Queen West (according to a small list of theatres in the Toronto World, there were two Maple Leaf Theatres, one on Queen W., the other on the Danforth. (Toronto World, Dec. 14th, 1913 p.10)
  • Majestic Music Hall (circa 1910) or simply the Majestic Theatre (circa 1903?) : Location: 25-27 Adelaide W.? The Toronto Opera House sat at this location prior to these theatres taking its spot. The Toronto Opera House burned down in 1903. A turn-of-the-century ad: "Six big Vaudville Acts --Latest Motion Pictures--Four Shows Daily. Mats, 1and 3, Evenings 7 and 9." (Toronto World, Oct. 15, 1910 p. 10). "...E.L. Ruddy, head of a big Canadian sign board and poster company, is behind the proposition to take over the Majestic theater at Toronto, formerly a widely patronised legitimate playouse, for moving picture purposes. It is declared that the sum of $50,000 is to be expended in transforming the structure, which seats 1,800 people. The changes include an entriely new front, a new orchestra floor, new seats throughout, the redecoration of the whole interior and the installation of improved scenic effects. The manager of the theater will be Leo Slushinger, who was manager of the Strand theater, Toronto, until one year ago. Mr. Slushinger has been in Buffalo during the past year, but has returned to take charge of the new house. The policy will be to exhibit the very best features obtainable and the management intends to catert to the "autombile trade." The theater is located on a wide street and there is considerable space in nearby streets for the parkind of cars." (Moving Picture World, Jan. 8, 1916 vol. 27 no. 2 p.282)
  • Major Theatre (1924-?): Address: 1780 Saint Clair Ave. W. Also known as Cinema Italia.An Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928. Seating capacity of 620.
  • Major Theatre (??) : Location: Rogers Rd. An Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928. It had a seating capacity of 658.
  • Massey Hall (est. 1894 - present) : Address: 178 Victoria Street. An interesting "illustrated lecture" took place here on the assumed perils of vaccination. The Living Canada series screened here in May of 1904, and the entertainment of comedian George Grossmith aided by the cinematograph happened here in Februrary of 1904. Canadian troops as seen through moving picutres regarding the Boer War made by the Biogarph Company were also screened here in Janurary and February, 1900. As an article notes "The First Performance Under the Auspices of the Canadian Patriotic Fund" were to screen nearly fifty films; locations inlcluded South Africa, Quebec and Halifax, among others. (Toronto World, Feb. 27th, 1900 p.4)

  • Mavety Theatre (ca. 1921) : Location: Junction area. Admission prices were reduced to 20 cents from 30, circa 1930. Seating capacity: 515 seats.
  • Mayfair Theatre (1927-1959): Address: 347 Jane St. (Also reportedly to be on James Street? "Alleged Combine" p. 79) Seating capacity: 490.

Architectural drawing (left) of the Mayfair, followed by a photo taken of the theatre in 1928 (centre) and a photo snapped soon after its closing in 1959 (right).

  • Melba (in operation circa 1915) : Location: Queen E.
  • Midway Theatre (in operation circa 1914): Location: Gerrard and Highfield (J.G. Vale, Prop. and Manager 1914)
  • Monarch Theatre (operating circa 1913) : Location: 1720 College St., near Crawford.
  • Model Theatre (circa ?) : Location: Bloor and Bathurst ?
    • A 1913 advertisement notes: "The home of refined and select patronage. 5000 feet of film shown, and an illustrated song at every performance. FLOWER NIGHT EVERY THURSDAY. Adult 10 cents. Children 5 cents. Saturday Matinee––Special for Ladies and Children at 2 pm."
    • Another advert dated March 21, 1915 appears for a "Model Theatre" but this time with an exact address (181 Danforth Ave.), different from the location given previously at Bloor and Bathurst:

  • Mount Dennis Theatre (1927-1975) also known as the Maple Leaf theatre : Address: 1298 Weston Rd. The Mount Dennis area had a population of about 7,500 (ca. 1930) and it was the only theatre of its kind in the area.
  • Munro Park (??) : ?? It appears that this portion of the Beaches was a destination for film screenings. The following descriptions illustrate that the Vitagraph made an appearance here.

    • Left: The Toronto World August 12, 1902 p.5 ; Left Centre: The Toronto World July 14, 1902 p.5 ; Right Centre: The Toronto World August 3, 1903 p.2 ; Right: The Toronto World August 16, 1904 p.2
  • New Hollywood Theatre (??) : Location: Yonge St., (address possibly around 1400 Yonge St., opposite the Queen's Royal) Supposedly an Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928. Seating capacity of 1029.
  • New Princess Theatre (in operation circa 1924) : Location: Toronto. According to a program dated Nov 3, 1924 for The Thief of Baghdad.
  • Ontario Theatre Group / Hudson (1926-) : Address: Mount Pleasant Theatre 675 Mount Pleasant Rd. Seating capacity: 458.
  • Oakwood Theatre (1917-) : Address: 161 Oakwood Ave., near St. Clair, (NW of Toronto centre). Built by Jethro and James Crang with a seating capacity of 1,418.
  • Odeon Theatre (1919-1968) : Address: 1558 Queen St. W. Seating capacity of 449 seats.

Dated 1919, this photo of the Odeon Theatre is courtesy City of Toronto Archives (Fonds 1231; Item number 758).

  • Onoka Theatre (in operation circa 1913-1914) : Location: corner of Danforth and Broadview Avenues.
  • Opera House / La Plaza / Acropolis / Dundas / Cinema Ellis (1909 -) : Address: 735 Queen St. E. (B. & F. Theatres Limited, Toronto)
  • Oriental Theatre (in operation circa 1919): Location: Toronto?
  • Orpheum Theatre / Rosemary / Golden Dragon (1930-1987) : Address: 600 Queen St. W.
  • Oxford Theatre and the New Oxford Theatre (1925, 1928-) : Address: 1510-2 Danforth Ave. (unknown which of the two theatres was situate at this address). The original Oxford theatre was opened October 12, 1925, by Mr. Bert Wainwright. Mr. Wainwright later moved "75 yards" west on February 20, 1929 to open the New Oxford Theatre.
  • Palace Theatre (1924-1987) : Address: 664 Danforth Ave., near Pape. Site acquired on February 26, 1920 by Famous Players. Seating capacity: 1,599.

This photo of the Palace Theatre was taken in 1927 and is courtesy City of Toronto Archives (Fonds 16; Series 71; Item 5484).

  • Pantages / Imperial / Imperial Six / (1920-): Address: 244 Victoria St.
  • Parkdale Theatre (1920-1970) : Address: 1605 Queen St. W. This was an Allen Theatre before Famous Players acquired controlling interest in 1923. It had a seating capacity of 1,548 seats.

Photo ca. 1920s courtesy City of Toronto Archives (Fonds 488; Item Number 2964)

  • Parkview Theatre (circa 1914) : Location: Roncevalles and Pearson Ave.
  • Parliament Theatre (1929-1963) : Location: Parliament and Gerrard. "Owned by an independent named J.J. McCabe, through his company called the Carlton Amusement Ltd." ("Alleged Combine" p.70) The site was acquired and the theatre built by B & F Theatres in 1929, with its opening in late 1929.
  • Playhouse (ca. 1916–) : Address: 344-346 College St. (near Dovercourt).
    • "The New Theater to Reopen. Toronto, Ontario––After lying idle for a period of three years because of inability to secure a license for the house, the New theater, Dovecourt Road and College street, has been taken over by Playhouses & Theatres, Limited, and will be opened in the near future. This company has been able to induce the authorities to grant an operationg license for the theater, which has a seating capacity of 420. Playhouses & Theatres, Limited, already controls two theaters in Toronto, the Playhouse, 344-346 College street and the Dundas Playhouse, Dundas street. The former has seating accommodation for 420 people while the second named will hold 700 persons. The president of the company is Mr. Maurice J. Thayler. This company has in view the acquiring of a prominent picture house in Toronto and steps have already been taken to secure title of the theater in question. The plans, in this instance, include the remodeling of the building." (Motion Picture World April 22, 1916 vol. 28 no.4 p.661). According to one article, the opening of the Playhouse on College was so successful, that its overcrowding led to manager M.J.Thayler's summons. (The Moving Picture World May 6, 1916 vol. 28 no. 6 p.1015)
  • Playtorium Theatre (circa ?) : Location: Broadview and Danforth
  • Pickford Theatre / Auditorium (ca. 1906) / Avenue (1908–) : Address: 380-2 Queen St. W., near Spadina. Now demolished.
  • Picture Palace (??) : Address: 1171 St. Clair Ave. W.
  • Prince Edward Theatre (??) : Location: Queen St. E. & Beech Ave.
  • Prince of Wales Theatre (1927-1966) : Location: Danforth and Woodbine. It had a seating capacity of 975 (ca. 1930) and was considered a fourth-run theatre.
  • "Prince George" Theatre (circa 1913) : Location: Dundas Street, between Brock and Sheridan Aves. Possibly owned and run by Motion Plays Limited.
  • Princess Family Theatre (??) : Location: King St. W., near University Avenue.

  • Queen's Palace (in operation ca. 1917) : Location: College St. "Mr. J Hill has purchased the Queen's Palace, College street, from Mr. S. Gang." (Moving Picture World Feb. 19, 1916 vol. 27, no. 7 p.1159)
  • Regal Theatre (in operation ca. 1916) : Location: Bloor St. and St. Clarens Ave. "The Regal theater, Bloor and St. Clarens avenue, has been closed temporarily, pending a new managerial arrangement." (Moving Picture World, Feb. 19, 1916 vol. 27, no. 7, p.1159)
  • Regent Theatre (Ontario Theatre Group) / Belsize / Crest (1927-) : Address: 551 Mount Pleasant Rd. Seating capacity: 969. Considered a fifth-run theatre.
  • Regent Theatre (in operation circa 1915) originally the Majestic Theatre, could also be the actual location of the vaudeville theatre known as the Toronto Opera House (burned 1903): Location: Adelaide W. & Yonge St. This is likely the Majestic Theatre/Majestic Music Hall at 27 Adelaide W. See Majestic Theatre. Seating capacity: 1,475.
  • Revue Cinema (1912-): This cinema still operates today as a non-for-profit entity. There are silent film screenings and other programs that continue to make this theatre a favourite among locals. Address: 400 Roncesvalles Ave.

  • Rialto Theatre (early 20thC) : Location: Yonge and Shuter?
  • Rio Theatre / Big Nickel (1913) / National (1913-1991) : Address: 373 Yonge St. (near Gerrard).
  • Rivoli Theatre / People's Theatre (1911-?) : Address: 332-334 Queen St. W. (between Soho and Spadina) John Shayne, Prop. (circa 1911) "This beautiful $20,000 theatre is now open after having been remodeled and redecorated, and is catering to the public at popular prices. Union orchestra in attendance. Continuous performance Matinee––1:30 to 6 Evening––7 to 11. High-class artists and the best moving pictures in town. Change of programme every Monday and Thursday. Prces 5 cents and 10 cents." (ad Toronto World January 29, 1911, p 12)
  • Robert Simpson Company, later Simpson's and now The Bay : Location: SE corner of Yonge and Queen.

This 1900 article on the Motorscope and the "realistic scenes presented" at the storefront of the Robert Simpson Company, which is now occupied by the Hudson's Bay Company, highlights what could have been many exhibitions of motion pictures at this unusual location. It also notes that "five entertainments" were provided each day.

  • Robinson's Musee Theatre / Shea's (1890-) : Now demolished. Location: 81 Yonge St., near Adelaide St. E. Edison's Vitascope had its first Toronto showing of The Kiss with Ontario born May Irwin here, August 31, 1896 in the lower portion of the building known as the 'Wonderland,' which also housed a collection of freakish items (waxworks and such), an art gallery and menagerie on the main and upper floors. A cost of ten cents was the price of admission to see the film.
  • Roma Theatre / Royal (1930-?) : Address: 1481-3 Dundas St. W.
  • "Royal George" Theatre (in operation circa 1913) : Address: 1217 Saint Clair Ave. W. (near Dufferin) "Owned and controlled by Motion Plays Limited" along with the "King George" Theatre at Bloor and Bathurst.
  • Rose (in operation circa 1915) : Address: 1092 Queen St. W. at Dovercourt.
  • Royal Alexandra Theatre (circa 1910) : Address: 260 King St. W.

  • Royce Theatre (??) : Location: ? An Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928.
  • Ryan's Theatorium (in operation circa 1913) : Address: 1280 Bloor St. W.
    • Advertised as having "ideal ventilation" and having "select orchestral music" showcasing "The Greatest Events of the World in Pictures, Always New––Always Fresh––Always Good".
  • Runnymede Theatre (1927-1999) : Address: 2223 Bloot St. W. Seating capacity: 1,500. Considered "a third run house in the city and first run in the zone". ("Alleged Combine" p.79)
  • Saint Clair Theatre (1921-) : Address: 1154-6 Saint Clair Ave. This was an Allen's Theatre until 1923, when Famous Players obtained controlling interest, along with other Allen Theatres.
  • Scarboro Beach and the 'Hippodrome' (circa 1914) : Location: Scarboro Beach Park. By the lake, between McLean and Leuty Avenues. This is the Beaches area in Toronto and not the suburb of Scarborough.

(Toronto World, Sun. Aug. 1, 1913 p.3)

  • Shea's Hippodrome Theatre (1914-1957) : Location: Bay & Queen Streets. Shea's Hippodrome had a seating capacity of 2,663 occupants, and was both a vaudeville theatre and a theatre for motion pictures. A majority stake was later acquired by Famous Players.

Above Left: Shea's Hippodrome advert from The Toronto World March 14, 1915. Above Right: This photo has been edited to fit this site. The original photo was taken in 1921and is courtesy City of Toronto Archives: Fonds 1231, Item Number 840.

  • Shea's Theatre (ca. 1900) : Location: Yonge St. Little is known about this location, but many of their ads would include the "kinetograph" over the years. We know that Shea's "New Theatre" was to be built at Victoria and Richmond streets. (see diagrams below). A notable 1900 article for Shea's, after listing the vaudeville acts, notes the following: "The conclusion was a Vitagraph (moving picture) exhibition, showing comic and other subjects in a way that excited mirth and admiration by turns. The Transvaal war pictures brought the most applause, but the exhibition of the old story of 'Cinderella and the Glass Slipper,' showing colored costumes, was the first instance which moving pictures have been given here in such fashion. For about five minutes there was a continuous change of scen, and the interest was intense while the beautiful spectacle was passing. It should also be noted that the "Great Train Robbery" had its Toronto, if not Canadian premiere here as an article in The Toronto World illustrates.
  • Shea's New Theatre or Shea's Victoria (ca. 1910) : Location: Richmond and Victoria. As a 1955 photo shows (see below), the location would later be named the Victoria. Shea's Victoria, had a seating capacity of 1,995. According to the combine investigation ca. 1930, the theatre was shut down for theatrical and cinematic purposes in early 1930, and was under lease to L.S. Shapiro (Nov. 1, 1930) and used as an indoor golf course. Original cost of the theatre was above 200,000 and the architectural design was made Lampert and Sons from Rochester.

Above Left: (Toronto World August 5th, 1910 p.2); Above Centre: An architectural drawing of Shea's "front elevation" at a new Shea's location at Victoria and Richmond St, which later became known as Shea's Hippodrome. (Toronto World May 25th 1910 p.13); Above Right: The original photo was taken in 1955 and very much fits the architectural drawing of 1915. Photo courtesy the Toronto Reference Library (Loc: Baldwin ; Call Num S 1-3287)

  • Sick Children's Hospital on College Street. (circa 1909): According to an article regarding "Picture Show Permits" stating "In future before a moving picture show can be establisehd, the consent of the civic fire and light committte must be obtained. The committee so decided yesterday. The Sick Children's Hospital on College-street will not be required to place fire escapes outside the building..." (Toronto World June 23, 1909 p.7)
  • St. George's Hall (??) : Location: Toronto. UFC Films May, 1915.
  • St. Clair Theatre (??): Location: St. Clair Ave., near Dufferin. Seating capacity: 1,556. A first run theatre.
  • Standard Theatre (1921) / Strand (1934) / Victory Theatre (1941) / Golden Harvest : Address: 283 Spadina Ave. or 287 Spadina Ave.?
  • Standard Theatre (??) : Address: 482 Queen St. W.

Photo dated ca. 1906-1910, of the Standard Theatre on Queen West, courtesy William James & family and City of Toronto Archives (Fonds 1244, Item 332).

  • Star Theatre (circa 1910) : Location: ?
  • Strand Theatre 1915-1920 : Location: Yonge St. north of King.

Above Left: Photo taken ca. 1920. Photo courtesy Archives of Ontario (Fonds 4436; Item Ref Code F 4436-0-0-0-154). Above Center: (Toronto World, March 7, 1915 p.11). Above Right: An article indicating that the Strand was turning part of its theatre and business into an indoor studio "for the taking of indoor pictures" for local events and attractions to be screened the sameday they were filmed. (The Motion Picture World April 15, 1916 vol. 20 no.3 p.489)

  • Sunnyside Summer Theatre (in operation circa 1906) : Location: Corner of Roncesvalles Ave. and Queen W. (E.L. Brooker, Mgr. circa 1906)
  • Teck (in operation circa 1915) : Location: Dovercourt and Queen. Other research suggests Broadview and Queen. (B. & F. Theatres Limited, Toronto). There may have been two Teck theatres, but the majority of research points to a location of Queen and Broadview.
  • Temple Theatre (in operation circa 1919) : Location: Toronto?
  • Theatorium (1906-1911) / Red Mill Theatre (1911-) : Address: 183 Yonge St. Seating capacity: 214.

Photo taken April 8, 1913 of Red Mill's exterior. Image courtesy of City of Toronto Archives (Fonds 1231; Item 638).

  • Tivoli Theatre / Allen (1917-1965) : Address: 17 Richmond St. E. Seating capacity: 1,553. A first run theatre.
  • Trivoli Theatre (??) : Location: This could simply be the Tivoli and a typo.
  • Trocadero (1906–) : Address: 96 Queen St. W.
  • The U-Kum Theatre (in operation circa 1913-16) : "The Theatre Really Worth While" and "The Home of Perfect Motion Pictures" according to a 1913 ad. Location: On College Street at Dovercourt. George D. Perry Leasee and Manager. "H.E. Stonge, manager of the U-Kum theater...has made arrangements whereby first or seconds runs of V-L-S-E and General release will be shown at his house, at 10c. and 15c., prices. He has also secured an orchestra of five pieces." (Moving Picture World Feb., 26, 1916 vol. 27 no. 8 p.1339)
  • Toronto Opera House (circa 1897) : The infamous Ambrose Small abandoned his duties at the Grand Opera House and started work here.
  • Uptown Theatre a.k.a. Loew's Uptown / Uptwon 3 (1920-2003) : Address: 764 Yonge St. Seating capacity of 2,975, and it was both a first run operation and later a second run theatre, only again to revert back to a first run theatre by 1930.
  • Variety (purpose-built ca.1909) : Location: 8 Queen E. Owned by John Griffin, 1909-1920. (Moore, SUNY 2008) Seating capacity: 425.
  • Vaudevite (storefront ca. 1906) : Address: 248 Yonge St.
  • Vaudette (summer show) : Location: Lakeshore, suburban Toronto. (Moore, SUNY 2008)
  • Vaughan Theatre (??) : Address: 544 Saint Clair Ave. W.
  • Venida (??) : Location: unknown. This theatre was mentioned in the "Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry In Canada" report (p.76).
  • Venus Theatre (circa 1914): Location : College and Yonge St.
  • Vermont Theatre (??) : Address: 1069 Bathurst Street
  • Victoria Terrace 6 : Address: 1450 Lawrence Ave. E.
  • Victory Theatre / Embassy / Astor / Showcase / Festival / New Yorker (1919-2004) : Address: 651 Yonge St.
  • Victoria Theatre (1919?) : If not an error on the part of the periodical, this theatre is more than likely the same as the Victory Theatre above, with a slight difference in address. Address: 651 1/2 Yonge St. Seating capacity: 644. Not a first-run theatre.
  • West Association Hall (films screened at this location as early as 1897) : Location: SE corner of Queen and Dovercourt.

Two separate adverts for the cinematograph at West Association Hall: (left) (Toronto Daily Star April 20, 1897); (right) (The Globe April 3, 1897 p.28).

  • Weston Theatre (??) : Located: Weston, Toronto, a suburb NW of the city centre. An Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928.
  • Willowvale Theatre (Jan. 1914 -) : Location: corner of Clinton and Bloor Street. Doors opened third week of January 1914. "The management will introduce special features on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, and are sparing no expense to give patrons a really first-class presentation of the world's best productions in motion photography. The house is well ventilated, and when being passed by the inspectors every detail was O.K.'s without a single alteration being required." (Toronto World Jan. 25, 1914 p.9)
  • Wonderland Amusement Hall (in operation circa 1913, closed circa 1930 having turned into a store) : Address: 1756 Dundas Street.
    • In the summer of 1913 they were open from 7 - 10:30 pm, and on Saturdays, the doors were open from 2:30-11pm. "Ventilation" was also a selling point. (W.L. Joy, Prop and Manager, circa 1913).
  • YMCA (1896–): Many YMCAs screened films throughout the city and Ontario. On occassion the odd


(The Toronto Daily News March 9, 1906 p.2)

  • York Theatre (circa 1915?) : Address: 812-816 Yonge St. (B. & F. Theatres Limited, Toronto).


  • Trent Theatre (??) : Location: ? "The Trent Theatre was acquired by Famous Players under lease dated January 12, 1927, between Trent Amusement Co., Ltd., and Theatrical Enterprises Ltd., for five years from January 1, 1927, with a provision for a renewal for a furher term of five years at the option of Theatrical Enterprises Ltd. A Mr. McCarthy apparently had a half interest in the Trent and owned the Belle Theatre in Belleville, which latter theatre Famous Players later purchased, and some of the negotiations were apparently conducted through Mr. McCarthy." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.50)

Thunder Bay

  • Lyceum Theatre (est. 1909) : Address: 20 Cumberland St. N.
  • Orpheum Theatre (est. 1912) : Address: Victoria Ave & Archibald St.
  • Royal Theatre (est. 1914) : Address: 407 Victoria Ave. E.



  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Location: ? Formerly the Patricia Theatre. An Allen Theatre acquired by Famous Players in 1928
  • Temple (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?


  • Princess Cinemas / Picture Show / Majestic (??) : Address: 6 Princess St.
  • Princess Theatre (??) : Address: King St. S & Erb St. W .(?)

Welland (population ca. 1930 : approx. 10,000)

  • Grand Theatorium (1907–) : Address: E Main St. When the theatre was acquired under a new lease by Famous Players in April 1930, the theatre was shut down subsequently to allow the business of cinema to run solely out of the Capitol (also acquired by Famous Players). Regarding this move, the aforementioned investigation into the alleged combine notes: "The operation has been profitable even after the rent of the Grand has been absorbed." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.56)
  • Star Nickelette (1908–) : Address: W Main St.
  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Location: ? We know that the theatre was in operation or more specifically leased in August of 1924, and renewed in 1929.

Windsor/Walkerville (population ca. 1930 : approx. 70,000)

  • Capitol Theatre (1920-) : Address: 121 Unversity Ave. W. Seating capacity: 1,945.
  • Empire Theatre (??) : Address: 115 Pitt
  • Kent Theatre (??) : Address: 1219 Ottawa
  • Odeon Theatre (??) : Address: 490 Riverside Dr. W.
  • Olde Walkerville Theatre / Tivoli / Walkerville (1920-) Address: 1564 Wyandotte St. E. (Walkerville had a population of approximately 7,500 ca. 1930)
  • Palace Theatre / Allen (1920-) : Address: 300 Ouelette Ave. Seating capacity: 1,585.
  • Park Theatre (??) : Address: 1377 Ottawa
  • Regent Theatre (??) : Location: ? Seating capacity: 495.
  • Royal Theatre (??) Address: 3395 Sandwich
  • Super Cinema (??) : Location: ?
  • Temple Theatre (??) : Address: 2771 Charles
  • Windsor (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Wyandotte (in operation circa 1915) : Location: ?
  • Vanity Theatre (??) Address: 673 Ouelette Ave
  • Imperial Theatre (??) : Location: ?


  • Capitol Theatre (??) : Address: 385 Dundas. "This is a first run house with a seating capacity of 1212 seats. The only other theatre in Woodstock which is a city of about 11,000 population, is the Princess with a seating capacity of about 400 seats. The Capitol, Woodstock, is being operated." ('Combines Investigation Act: Investigation Into An Alleged Combine in the Motion Picture Industry in Canada'; Report of Commissioner April 30, 1931, Dept. of Labour, Canada; Ottawa: F.A. Acland 1931. p.50)
  • Lyceum Theatre (??) : Location: ?
  • Princess Theatre (??) : Location: ?
  • Royal Theatre (??) : Address: 603 Dundas

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