Colonial Movie Theatre - Phoenixville, PA
Updated: Sep 7, 2022
The 115-year old Colonial Theatre is located at 227 Bridge Street, in downtown Phoenixville, PA. The theatre is currently owned and operated by Association for the Colonial Theatre (ACT), a nonprofit corporation.
Built in 1903, the Colonial is the last surviving of four theatres that once existed in the Phoenixville Borough and is the only theatre of its kind in Chester County. In earlier days, the Colonial was home to live stage shows, vaudeville acts and musicals including appearances by Harry Houdini and Mary Pickford. The historic, three-screen venue consists of the original 658-seat ‘vaudeville house’ and two newer additional theatres.
In 1958, the classic science fiction movie, The Blob was an independent production, shot on location in Phoenixville, Downingtown, Chester Springs, and Royersford, PA. It was filmed by a crew that had made educational and religious short films. The Blob afforded the young Steve McQueen his first starring role. The Colonial Theatre was featured in a pivotal scene of the movie as the slow-moving blob begins to attack the town.
The school shown in the movie, from which fire extinguishers are collected to fend off the crawling blob, is the Barkley Elementary School, located at 320 2nd Avenue at Lincoln Avenue, in Phoenixville,
The Colonial Theatre has changed ownership numerous times over the years. However, the building's use as both a movie house and live-show venue remained throughout. Eventually, it was purchased by a restoration group in the mid 90’s.
Every year since 1999, there is a 3-day summer event called the "Blobfest", held in downtown Phoenixville. The fest features several screenings of The Blob and other horror films. A film competition, scream contest, street fair, and live entertainment is scheduled that weekend. At the festival there are live re-enactments of the famous scene filmed at the Colonial, showing screaming movie patrons fleeing through the front doors of the theater.
In December 2002, the neon sign on the Colonial Theater was restored in time for the theatre’s 100th anniversary in 2003.
For more information on the Colonial Theatre, movies and showtimes, visit them online at: https://thecolonialtheatre.com/