Mayor and Council Name New Cinema "The Barrymore Theater"

Resolution passed to name the new three-screen cinema and film museum to be constructed in Redevelopment Area 5 on Main Street "The Barrymore Theatre."

The Mayor & Council passed a resolution to name the new three-screen cinema and film museum to be constructed in Redevelopment Area 5 on Main Street "The Barrymore Theatre" during their Feb. 14 public meeting. 

The name is in honor of the Barrymore family, who not only lived in Fort Lee, but made lasting contributions to the town through their volunteer work and successful efforts to raise money for a firehouse in the Coytesville section of town.

It was at the location of Area 5 that 18-year-old John Barrymore made his stage debut in 1900 in a production of A Man of the World to benefit the construction of a new firehouse for Co. 2 in Coytesville. The play was directed by his father, actor Maurice Barrymore, who was a volunteer captain in the Coytesville Fire Company (Co. 2) and spearheaded the fundraiser to help pay for the building of a firehouse on Washington Avenue. The building was used as a firehouse from 1901 through the late 1950's, and still stands today.  

The Barrymore familly owned a house on the corner of Hammett and Myrtle Avenue. John's brother Lionel and sister Ethel came to Fort Lee to make movies--Lionel from 1908-1912 as a member of D.W. Griffith's Biograph Studio stock company of actors, and Ethel as a contract actress with Metro Studio on Lemoine Avenue.


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carol simon February 23, 2013 at 03:34 PM
"The Barrymore Theater" feels so right! If only "Park Avenue" had that same quality ring. Oh well, What's in a name???
Howard L. Pearl February 23, 2013 at 03:39 PM
To Carol: Park Ave. is indeed boring. But Martha Washington brought slaves to the White House. Not sure that is such a wonderful title for a street either.
William Mays February 23, 2013 at 06:48 PM
I'm sure they can make it work using Park. Park Lane or Park Boulevard both sound better than Park Avenue
Thomas A Bennett February 23, 2013 at 08:21 PM
re:Pearl's comment. Martha washington brought slaves to the white house. I wish he got the facts straight.These Presidents owned slaves:Washington,Jefferson,Madison, Monroe, Jackson, Van Buren, Harrison,Tyler, Polk, Andrew Johnson, Grant. Not all of these men had them in the White House, but they had them. We all agree abolishing slavery was a good thing. Do you want to remove everything named for them? of course not. leave Martha Washing ton alone.
Howard L. Pearl February 24, 2013 at 01:19 AM
Being the first first lady was not an accomplishment; at best, it was an accident. Martha was opposed to George being the First President of the U.S. and refused to attend his inauguration. She was a rich widow at the age of 25 and lived the "good life" from that point forward. History has been very kind to her memory.


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