Rio Theatre - Detroit MI

Address: 7714 W Venor Hwy
City: Detroit
State: MI
Zip: 48209
County: Wayne
Open: 1935
Capacity: 1400
Owner History:
Theater Type: Neighborhood House
Number of visits to this page: 4939

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:

Source: Cinema Treasures

The Rio opened in 1935, built in an unusual mix of Art Deco and Spanish Colonial styles. It sat around 1400, and was designed by Cyril Edward Schlay, a protegee of C. Howard Crane, whose best known Detroit work is the former Telenews (most recently turned into a nightclub). The Rio served as a first-run movie house until it closed in 1960. It currently houses a furniture store.

Info Updates:
1/26/2011 - Frank Rowan
I lived at 2764 Inglis Street in Detroit from 1936 to 1940. All the kids in my neighborhood went to the Rio on Saturday afternoon. The had two pictures, news, a cartoon and on Saturdays an exciting adventure serial of heroes like, Buck Rogers, Flash Gordon, Superman etc. It cost 10 cents to get into the theater, for a nickel we could get a large milky way candy bar and for 10 cents a bag of popcorn. On they way home we would stop at the Eagle Dairy on Vernor Highway and buy a triple decker ice cream cone for 10cents. My weekly allowance was 30cents. The Saturday matinee took care of it each week.
12/29/2007 - Sean Doerr
Theater decor still exists somewhat. Floor is leveled, but the general form of the theater i there, and if I can recall projection holes are there but covered up. Not too much decoration originally in the theater... columns with a little bit of decoration. Owners of the establishment were nice and let me check it out and told the little bit of information they knew.
12/18/2003 - Box Office Magazine
July 1960 Issue - Ellsworth Miller formerly of the Regent, is now operator of the Rio, succeeding Stanley Kulawik. Manager George Wise had Guy Gibby, known as superman, as a stage attraction Saturday.
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