'Second Chance' bows in 3-D

Aug. 3, 1953
GOOD MORNING: The Pantages audience broke into applause when the screen announced, after “Second Chance,” “You will no longer need your 3-D glasses for the rest of this program.” However, two prim ladies kept their glasses on during the showing of “From Here to Eternity.” Finally, one of the gals took off the specs and said, “Oh, you don’t need glasses for this one.” But the other kept ‘em on, saying, “I like the effect!”… And at the Picwood showing of “Torch Song,” Joan Crawford asked Chuck Walters to request the theater to shut off the air-conditioning so the dialogue could be heard… And in the film, when Joan tells piano-playing Mike Wilding to “take those 88 keys, black and white and” — the house fell apart…(2008 update: “Second Chance” was indeed in 3-D, continuing the trend set by “House of Wax” which opened down the street (Hollywood Boulevard) at the Hollywood Paramount where I had originally written, “With glasses raised on high patrons toasted the presentation.” Meanwhile, “Second Chance,” starring Robert Mitchum, Linda Darnell and Jack Palance needed more than 3-D to succeed. But the Pantages remained a movie house (home to the Oscars as well from 1950-1959) until the Nederlanders partnered with Pacific Theaters and started making legit history in L.A., launching on Feb. 17, 1977, with “Bubbling Brown Sugar.” In 2000, it started a new history-making era with “The Lion King” and “Wicked” has been racking up the box office since February 2007 and continues to January, after which a full program will include “Phantom of The Opera,” “Grease,” “Rent,” “Rain: The Beatles Experience,” and the start of a Nederlander-multi-million-$ expansion program — hi-rise condos, stores, etc. extending eastward from Vine Street and south off Hollywood Boulevard… As for the above screening of the Joan Crawford starrer at the Picwood (Pico and Westwood) — that theater also continued screening top films including premieres — which I also m.c’d as I had at the Pantages. Two years ago, the Picwood became the Landmark, setting a new standard in comfort to listen to and see movies — yes, including 3-D.

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