Torontoist Flickr pool contributor bitefight brings us photos of the shuttered Revue cinema, which suffered a spectacular collapse of its marquee yesterday. The structure fell Sunday morning around 3 a.m. and there were no apparent injuries. The drippy marquee was well-known for its tendency to collect snow and water, and it seems that the weight of the recent snowfall is the cause behind the collapse.
Opened in 1912, the Revue is a heritage property, and thus, its facade must be preserved. The non-profit Revue Film Society has been trying to save the building from redevelopment since it closed in June, intending to run it as a repertory theatre for independent film. The RFS raised over $30,000 in donations and offered to purchase the theatre from private investors. The original private purchase deal fell through and the building is once again for sale, listed at $1,275,000. The RFS hopes for either a lease agreement or a benevolent investor that will reopen the doors to Toronto’s film fans.
The Revue was one of Canada’s longest continuous-running movie houses and has become a significant landmark on Roncesvalles Avenue. Its closing concerned preservationists, joining the recent closures of classic houses like the Kingsway, the Paradise, the Royal and the Eglinton. The theatre was one of four owned by the Festival Cinemas Group, which was owned by Peter McQuillan, who died in 2004. The family was struggling to keep the cinemas open, noting poor ticket sales and home rentals as a key to their demise.
The final film screened at the Revue was Lawrence of Arabia on June 30, 2006. See photos of how the marquee used to look here.
UPDATE: Readers report that the sign was cut apart today, thrown in a bin and carted away. More photos of the sign and its dismantling here and here. Additional photos below the fold.