Others on the list will have more specific information, I'm sure, but for a starting place you might check Wikipedia's list of smoking bans in the United States. Individual theatres and chains probably have their own policies, but state laws would seem to be the logical place to start. I know that movie theaters in New York City still had smoking sections into the 1980s or later, something that was not common in many places.
The entry includes a few useful links as well.
"Only connect!" --E.M. Forster
Donald F. Larsson, Professor
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Minnesota State University
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From: Film and TV Studies Discussion List [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Catherine Clepper
Sent: Friday, May 07, 2010 10:03 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [SCREEN-L] smoking in movie theatres
Does anyone know when smoking was banned in American movie theatres? Was it
done on a chain by chain, theatre by theatre basis, or was it a general
policy? Has anything been written on smoking regulation within theatre
space? (All my efforts to research historical smoking bans were undone by
the overwhelming number of popular/social science reports on
diegetic/narrative smoking's effects on kid/teen viewers. Blerg.)
Please respond directly to [log in to unmask] Any guidance on this matter
would be greatly appreciated.
Doctoral Candidate, Screen Cultures
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