Carmen Theatre - Dearborn MI

Address: 5670 Schaefer
City: Dearborn
State: MI
Zip: 48126
County: Wayne
Open: 41
Capacity: 1490
Owner History:
Theater Type: Neighborhood House
Number of visits to this page: 11209

Please note that location entries may feature older photos or post card views that may not represent the current appearance, features, addresses, phone numbers, or contact names of the attraction. This site is intended to be a historical as well as current record of various attractions but it is not always possible to have up-to-date information due to the vast number of locations featured here. We ask you consult the propietor for current information.

General Information:

From Cinema Treasures

Opening shortly after the larger Dearborn Theatre, in early 1941, the Carmen Theater was another Art Moderne style movie house with an unusual gear-like dome over its lobby, rising three stories high. The theater’s name was spelled out in large, illuminated letters on the roof.

The Carmen Theater could seat 1,490, and operated as a movie house through the 1980’s. It is was last used as an auto parts store up until a few years ago before that was closed. It has since been razed and replaced by another commercial structure.

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Info Updates:
7/14/2014 - Stuart l. Gorelick
My family built and owned the Carmen theatre. The theatre was sold to the Nederlander family aprox 1960. I would love to find a picture of the theatre from the 1940s when it was a beautiful, elegant movie theatre. Please contact me at my eMail address, or if you have any questions or comments, photograph please contact me. Thank you Stuart.
2/7/2005 - Dennis Early
On august 15, 1975 my wife and I were married and then had our wedding reception in the tower of the Carmen Theater. We had 150 guests and a band that played on the roomy stage. The room was circular and had the walls covered in red velvet drapes. Pretty classy for its time. It also had a long wooden bar and nice dance floor. The main stairway was curved and widened as you descended to the entry on the north side of the building. I dont know how long they were renting this space out but it was very well managed. One thing I thought was a bit odd is that there were no visible windows in the hall.
5/23/2004 - Ted Cuda
I grew up several blocks from the Carmen and my family owned a business just north of the Carmen at 6063 Schaefer. Oscar Gorelick ( the one time owner) and my Dad were friends. I recall Oscar telling me that his father had built the theater. To my knowledge, the site was never a Speak Easy. The building was built in 1941 well after prohibition. Prior to that, the land according to my mother, who was around at the time, was vacant. At one point in the late 50s or early 60s, there was consideration to opening a private club up in the rotunda of the building but the plans were scratched because the state would not issue a liquor licence due to the close proximity to Fordson High School. Some think that the rotunda shaped design was to resemble the Ford Rotunda that was several miles south of the Carmen on Schaefer Road. The building was torn down in the mid to late 90s to make way for a medical building. I have a brick from the Carmen Theater for old times sake.
1/12/2004 - Fredrick George Ryan
Theater has been torn down and the site is now home to a medical office center.
1/10/2004 - Box Office Magazine
March 1959 Issue - The Louis J. Mitchell Theatre Service is booking and buying for the Waterford Drive-In, Drayton Plains, and the local Carmen, according to D. A. Ritter, former president of Cooperative Theatres, now with Mitchell. The Waterford Theatre was handled by Wayne Smith, the Carmen was sold recently by Oscar Gorelick to the Nederlander family, which owns the Shubert and Riviera theatres.
Carmen Theatre - From Cinema Treasures (newer photo)
From Cinema Treasures (newer photo)
Carmen Theatre - From Cinema Treasures (newer photo)
From Cinema Treasures (newer photo)
Carmen Theatre - From Cinema Treasures (newer photo)
From Cinema Treasures (newer photo)
Carmen Theatre - Was Converted To Auto Parts Store (newer photo)
Was Converted To Auto Parts Store (newer photo) © 2024 Over 72,622,521 Served