Fremantle Stuff > Cinemas
Beacon Theatre was a Fremantle cinema despite the fact that, as its name suggests, it is almost in Beaconsfield. It opened in 1937, and probably closed as a cinema not long before 1970. The building still exists, and is in good condition, and is now in use as a medical centre.
Cine 2 was an 'adult' cinema at 6 Elder Place from 1983 to 1997 or later.
FTI (Film and Television Institute) in the former Boys School in Adelaide St, had occasional screenings, sometimes outdoors in Princess May Park between FTI and Port Cinéaste. In May 2014 FTI left for the Northbridge Cultural Precinct, after more than forty years in Freo. (When it was first set up, by Jo O'Sullivan et al., it was called PIFT, the Perth Institute for Film and Television.)
Hoyts Queensgate, with six screens, operated until 21 July 2014. The Queensgate building has been demolished: no-one will miss it.
Hoyts Millennium with four screens is a cinema complex currently operating in Collie St.
King's Theatre, 52-62 South Terrace Fremantle, was next to the Freemasons (Sail and Anchor) Hotel. It was built by James Gallop, and was also called the Dalkeith Opera House after a house owned by Gallop in what became the suburb, Dalkeith. (The house is now called Gallop House.) Previously on that site were the The Olde Englishe Fayre and the Pavilion Theatre 1899-1903. The building now houses the Metropolis (night club).
Luna on SX is nominally in Essex St (hence the SX) but really closer to Norfolk St.
Majestic Theatre was in High Street, in the middle of what is now the Mall. It opened in 1916 and was closed in 1938 when the site was redeveloped for retail, and the facade is over what is now the Manning Arcade. The auditorium (upstairs) is empty, and lacks a ceiling. It is about to be redeveloped by Silverleaf Investments, but I doubt that a cinema is foreseen.
The Mayfair was near the corner of Petra St and Canning Rd (Hwy) and was built by Herbert Locke in 1932. The Empire Hall, later Swan Suburban Pictures, was on the site before Locke's building - which appears still to exist.
Mouat St. David Hutchison writes that 'No. 25 was the site of an old picture garden and a row of six cottages. The Batemans built a warehouse in the 1880s, which was demolished in 1937, and the cottages in 1942.' (116) The new building now there is the Prindiville Hall, part of NDU.
Oddfellows Hall/Gaiety/Bijou, William St opp. Town Hall, opened July 1867. Harper's Biograph Vaudeville Company showed a season of films 8-13 November 1897, as one of the earliest screenings in Fremantle. (The very first was in the Town Hall.) Demolished 1925 (or 1919). >
Olympia, Leake St, 1909-1913, a skating rink converted into a cinema for use during summer; in winter the company used the Victoria Hall.
Oriana Cinema (1938-1972) was on the corner of High and Queen Streets, next to the Victoria Hall, and was an art deco building which was removed in 1972 in favour of some very ordinary shops. First building on the site was a house, became a hotel - the Rose and Crown, and then became a grammar school directed by Henry Briggs, until he had built the extant school on the top of the hill in High Street.
Palladium Theatre (and Gardens?) opened in 1914 and closed in the late 1940s. Higham's Buildings in Market St occupy the whole block between Bannister and High Streets: the Palladium was behind the southern (or left-hand) third. The offices and shops of the street frontage are still in situ, but the cinema construction—whatever it was—is gone.
Pier Hotel, Cliff St. John Dowson writes that the Pier Hotel 'hosted an outdoor cinema at the rear'. (Dowson 2003: 121)
Port Cinéaste Cinema in Adelaide St, near FTI and Clancy's, with 150 seats, was usable until its demolition in 2014. It had been occasionally used for events, and was the home of Harbour Theatre from 2009 to about 2012. In late 2014 the cinema building was demolished, together with a number of shops and a Council carpark: half of the city block will become a Hilton hotel.
Princess Theatre was on the corner of Market and Leake Streets. It was built in 1912, and closed in 1969. The building remains, and the auditorium is used for storage. The fabric of the building is is much the same as when it was a cinema, including some decorative plasterwork. The entrance was through where Kakulas Sister now operates, and the 1930s arches and wallpaper can still be seen in the store.
Richmond Cinema was on the corner of Silas St and Canning Hwy, East Fremantle. Richmond Quarter, a block of flats, is now on the site.
Rose Picture Gardens with a stage and fixed seating was at 25 Mouat Street in the 1920s, occupying the whole corner with Croke Street. On the site now is Prindiville Hall, part of Notre Dame University.
Sharpe's Penny Pictures, Holland St, on the corner of Onslow St, was not a cinema building as such. George Sharpe showed films in the backyard of his shop 1930-33, until the Fire Brigade closed him down.
Town Hall Fremantle had films screened from as early as 16 December 1896 (West's, 1909; Vic's Pictures, 1910-19). Other such venues: East Fremantle Town Hall, the North Fremantle Town Hall (as the Arcadia), Victoria Hall, High St, and the Fremantle Prison.
The Coliseum Picture Theatre and Gardens was on the corner of Hay St and Rokeby Road, where the Regal Theatre now stands.
Bell, Max D. 1986, Perth: A Cinema History, Book Guild, Sussex: 20.
Dowson, John 2003, Old Fremantle, UWAP.
Gillard, Garry 2015, 'The cinemas of Fremantle', CinemaRecord, 85.
Hutchison, David 2006, Fremantle Walks, Fremantle Arts Centre Press.
Lee, Jack 1979, This is East Fremantle, East Fremantle Town Council: 152-153.
Australian Museum Of Motion Picture & Television
WA CinemaWeb (part of the AMMPT)
Cinema and Theatre Historical Society of Australia
Garry Gillard | New: 23 June, 2013 | Now: 5 May, 2019