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Telenews Theater

2001 Photo from the Adam Martin collection.
1540 Woodward Ave
Detroit MI

Record #13310  
 Opened: 1942
 Closed: Yes (date unknown)
 Current Use:
Capacity: 465 seats
Architect(s): Cyril Edward Schley; Louis Wiltse
Architectural Style(s): Streamline Moderne
National Register:
Current Organ: none
 Also Known As: Plaza, Tele-Arts, Big Star
 Previously operated by: Telenews Theatres

This newsreel theater opened on February 12, 1942. A teletype machine in the lobby kept customers up to the minute with the latest news and there was a working radio station, WLBJ, operating from the basement.

The Detroit Tigers away baseball games were broadcast from the basement studio in the 1940s.

Nicholas George Theatres purchased the theater in 1969 and Louis Wiltse remodeled it into the Plaza Theater, reopening that November. The theater performed poorly, and was sold a few years later and eventually switched to adult films, closing in 1987.

Carl Allison reopened the Plaza in 1988, as the Tele-Arts, showing independent and foreign films. After struggling along for several years, the theater closed again in 1991. The theater reopened later that year as the Big Star, but only on a part-time basis.

 Photos remain the property of the Member and may not be reproduced without the written consent of the Member.

July 2001 photos from the Adam Martin collection.

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Last featured 6/20/2005. Last edited 5/8/2022.

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