Port Credit is one of the premiere go-to spots in the entire GTA as it offers lots of shops, bars, parks, restaurants, and the beautiful waterfront. There is one thing that is perhaps missing in Port Credit: a movie theatre.
Well, it may surprise some of you to know that Port Credit was once the home for a movie theatre. And that is the subject of today’s Retrospective; a look back at what used to light-up the heart of Port Credit and provide entertainment to citizens so many years ago.
The Vogue Theatre, as it was called, opened its doors in November 1937, a whopping 82 years ago. Although this comes some 40 years after the first movie theatre in the world, which was in New Orleans in 1896. That said, a newspaper clipping from the time described as “the most up-to-date in the union”, as it was being built. The theatre was using the latest and greatest projection and sound technology to ensure it was the best way to watch the talkies in the land.
The image above shows the theater on opening night in 1937, and its helping light the entire street. The theatre was a beauty and a testament to the architecture of the time. The theatre showed two movies a week, with the first two being When You’re In Love, and Easy Living, both from 1937.
In the picture below you can see the front doors, as well as the ticket booth. There are a few places left downtown Toronto that retain the rounded marquee out front, but it virtually a thing of the past now, and that’s kinda sad. Whenever you walked inside there was no giant concession area or touchscreens, it was much more simple but no less fun.
Inside the theater doesn’t look like much by today’s standards, but it was top-of-the-line at the time. An ornate theater with comfortable chairs and a humble screen at the front. It might not have been as nice as what we have today, but you also didn’t have to sit through 40 minutes of commercials and trailers before the movie.
People from across Mississauga would come to Port Credit to attend the movie theatre and watch the latest films. It was a staple of the town across multiple decades and gave locals a place to go and spend an evening. It’s a shame it no loner exists, but perhaps one day a movie theater will return to the ever-growing Port Credit.
The Vogue Theatre in Port Credit was later followed by The Roxy Theatre in Cooksville in the 1950’s, and the Dixie 5 Theatre in the 1970’s. Mississauga’s theatres were replaced by various businesses, and now the city has four movie theatres, one of which is on the Oakville border.
The Vogue Theatre in Port Credit represents a very different time period in the city’s history. The Theatre was a popular addition to the area but in 1979 it was closed for the last time. In the years since, The Crooked Cue pub/restaurant has taken up residence in the building, and it pays great homage to the old theatre with pictures on the walls. And that’s about as much as you can ask for; things change and times moves on, but it’s important to never forget where you came from.
Photos courtesy of Heritage Mississauga, Dr. Lee Farrow, and Gordon J. Hatten