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2 Comments

culture

Vintage Toronto Ads: Coming Christmas Day—The Odeon York!

Leave the kids at home for an adults-only opening bill!

Source: the Toronto Star, December 24, 1969.

Things opened on Christmas Day: presents under a tree, cards from dear friends, bottles of wine at the dinner table, old family wounds, and movie theatres.

Yes, movie theatres.

Catching a film on December 25 is a tradition for lonely souls eager to escape painful reminders of the holidays, for families and friends to flee chaotic Christmas celebrations for a few hours, and a shared cultural experience for those who don’t celebrate Christmas in the first place. With a large pool of customers to draw upon, especially on a day when few other businesses are open, why not use Christmas to debut a splashy new cinema?

Parents may have welcomed the York Theatre’s opening bill on December 25, 1969, since neither of the main attractions was suitable for younger audiences. We suspect kids were content to stay home and play with Santa’s deliveries. Viewers could take the theatre’s spiral staircase to see a farce (Cactus Flower) or a foursome (Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice).

Blockbusters graced the screens of the York until 2001. After operating as an event venue and fitness club, the site is now the presentation centre for the Madison condo project.

Comments

  • Goy

    A lot of Jews go to the movies on Christmas Day. I think the York was on Eglinton?

  • Aeron Frost

    The little map says it is a few steps east of the Eglinton subway. I have worked at cinemas and every holiday people call asking if we will be or are open. My standard response was to say “Yes, we are open every day of the year.” Cinemas are one of the few businesses that are. I’m certainly planning to see something on the 25th.