On Stage and Off

Theater in Georgia

Movie Screen-Specific Theater

Film's popularity led to the development of movie theaters—buildings dedicated to screening and viewing films. These ranged from small, rural theaters to large, urban movie palaces. These palaces were constructed with grand décor and state-of-the-art technology, becoming hubs of activity in many Georgia communities. At the time, the movie industry existed in an undefined state of monopoly, leading to a decades-long investigation by federal agencies that eventually came before the U.S. Supreme Court. While there were thousands of small, independently run movie theaters, the primary theaters were founded and managed by the major studios: Paramount, Warner Bros., RKO, Fox Film Corporation (later Twentieth Century Fox), and Loew’s (MGM). Movie theaters enjoyed a golden age from the 1920s to midcentury but suffered declining popularity following the rise of television and suburban migration. In the subsequent decades, many theaters would be lost or maintained as remnants of a bygone era.