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The Film Programs of the Detroit Film Theatre, Michigan Theater, and Redford Theatre

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July Blog Entries: 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013

Explore theater history
in the Looking Back feature!

Bob Hope Appears in Detroit (July 1956)

July Looking Back: 1931 1932 1948 1956 1957 1962 1981 1982

Look What's Coming!

The DFT hits the road for Metropark screenings of the original Godzilla on August 1, 8, and 15.
The Michigan marks the 100th anniversary of World War 1 with BBC films on August 3 and August 4.

Find out why Some Like It Hot at the Redford on August 8 and 9.

 

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Looking Back

November 1931

Step back in time to see what area movie theaters were presenting in November 1931. Film titles are linked to the Internet Movie Database.

For more information about these theaters, see Cinema Treasures or Water Winter Wonderland.


Michigan Theater visitors saw Clark Gable in his first starring role, in Sporting Blood. Gable, who began 1931 in lower-billed roles, later teamed up with Greta Garbo in Susan Lenox (Her Fall and Rise). Jimmy Durante was promoted as the "Idol of Broadway" in New Adventures of Get Rich Quick Wallingford (with William Haines) and as "Schnozzle Durante" in The Cuban Love Song (with Lawrence Tibbett).

Other popular movies at the Michigan included the Eddie Cantor comedy Palmy Days and the drama Once a Lady, in which Ruth Chatterton played "a woman who becomes a social outcast in one scandalous moment - and who regains glorious renown in a life of Love-atonement." Also at the Michigan were highlights of the University of Michigan's Nov. 21 6-0 win over the University of Minnesota in front of a homecoming crowd of about 50,000.

Current visitors to the front lobby of the Redford admire a large "Photo of the Original Marquee," which shows George O'Brien and Noah Beery starring in Riders of the Purple Sage, along with promos for a bunch of Mickeys: Mickey Mouse cartoons and Mickey McGuire (Mickey Rooney) in Mickey's Thrill Hunters. That Nov. 13-14 lineup was followed on Nov. 15 with the live appearance of bandleader Del Delbridge. Laughter echoed throughout the Redford at the antics of Laurel and Hardy (in Pardon Us, their first full-length feature), Buster Keaton (Sidewalks of New York) and the Marx Brothers (Monkey Business).

"Members of the Allied Theater Owners of Michigan, representing 350 theaters throughout the state, will donate two per cent of their gross receipts for November as their contribution to President Hoover's campaign for unemployment relief," read an article in the Nov. 3 Detroit News. Highly publicized films in Detroit included Possessed (with Joan Crawford and Clark Gable), which opened at the United Artists on Nov. 12; Frankenstein (RKO Downtown, Nov. 19); and The Champ (Paramount, Nov. 21). Also popular was The Sin of Madelon Claudet.


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This web site is not affiliated with the Detroit Film Theatre, the Michigan Theater, or the Redford Theatre.

Web site copyright © 2014 by Robert Hollberg Smith, Jr.

Launched November 25, 2005.

Last updated July 21, 2014.

Graphics courtesy of the Absolute Web Graphics Archive and Christmas Graphics Plus.

Videos courtesy of YouTube, Turner Classic Movies, and the Internet Archive.