Carlton Theatre

Address: 13125-35 Fenkell
City: Detroit
State: MI
Zip:
County: Wayne
Open: 1932
Capacity: 1000
Owner History:
Number of visits to this page: 3498
Notes: AKA: Surf, Variety
Info Updates:
2/22/2021 - Andy Gray
This image is of the Carlton Theatre, at 13125-13135 Fenkell Avenue, and it was shot in June 1948. Similar to the Graystone, this theater appears to be in an older building that had recently been renovated. Family records don't indicate when Johnson Construction Co. might have worked on the Carlton. The marquee is an older more ornate style - perhaps dating to the 1930's. Two 1943 films "Sahara" (starring Humphrey Bogart) and "Destroyer" were playing when the photo was taken. The marquee also says: "De Luxe Pushback Seats" and "Academy of Proven Hits." On the right side of the photo you can see a worker standing on top of a Faygo Beverages truck which is parked in front of the soda shop next to the theater. Talk about Michigan history! The building has been demolished.
4/4/2011 - David R Cox
My Dad, Eugene J. Cox who grew up on Littlefield and Eaton worked here in 1947 as an usher.
11/14/2007 - jack lorber
this was my neighborhood theater. Our house was on Ward Ave on the other side of Fenkell from the theater(2 houses N of Fenkell by the Wrigley''s Supermarket. Remember Sat matinees w/cartoon festival(10 cartoons + feature). My parents moved to Southfield 1971. I live in the suburban Dallas area since 1976.
11/29/2006 - Noize Boy
Dino, I used to walk by the Variety on the way to catholic school. They would have nude pictures of some of the ladies in the films, but with color or glitter stars over ther privates.
1/15/2004 - Cinema Treasures
Opened as the Carlton in 1932, this Art Deco-style theater could seat around 1000. It was renamed the Surf in 1955, and a decade later reopened as the Variety. By the end of the 60s, the theater began showing adult features. It was closed in 1975, and has since been demolished.
11/29/2003 - Dino Kanelos
When I was 14 years old, my friend and I used to sneak into this theater by sliding down the coal chute. This entry point placed us right behind the movie screen where we had to tip toe into the seating area.
 Photos:3
Carlton Theatre - FROM AL JOHNSON
FROM AL JOHNSON
Carlton Theatre - VARIETY SURF CARLTON FROM FREDERICK
VARIETY SURF CARLTON FROM FREDERICK
Carlton Theatre - OLD PHOTO
OLD PHOTO
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