Mystery Street

4th Avenue And Main Street


After running out of the theater, several movie-goers are seen running around the corner. I often wondered where this scene was filmed, and my usual information sources couldn’t shed any light on the subject.

However, thanks to Howard Fishlove, who was the key grip and slater for the original film, the location was identified as 4th & Main Street in Royersford. I’d also like to thank Dave Lentz, who visited the location and sent me these pictures.

In 2007, that block of Main Street got its second shot at Hollywood stardom, as director Peter Jackson and crew used the street as a location for his 1970s-set. Shooting lasted for two days from November 28 to the 29th.

[googleMap name=”Mystery Street” directions_to=”false”]4th Avenue And Main Street, Royersford, PA[/googleMap]

FilmBuffRich on December 27th, 2008 | File Under Locations | No Comments -

Doc Halen’s House

South Main Street And Third Avenue

This is the home and office of Dr. T. Hallen (Stephen Chase), where Steve and Jane brought the old man (Olin Howlin) they found running across the road. He had “some sort of blister” on his hand. It was late and Dr. Hallen was preparing to leave town for a conference. He called his nurse because he felt he would need to amputate the arm to get ahead of whatever this “thing” was. As we know, eventually The Blob ate not only the old man, but Dr. Hallen and his nurse.

The house still stands on the corner of Main and Third in Phoenixville, PA, and looks much the same as it did in the film. The gingerbread has been painted multi-colored, the glassed-in doorway has been removed and the trends , but it’s easy to tell it’s the same house. However, please remember that it still is a residence, so please respect their privacy.

[googleMap width=”400″ height=”400″ directions_to=”false”]South Main Street And Third Avenue, Phoenixville, PA[/googleMap]

FilmBuffRich on June 25th, 2007 | File Under Locations | No Comments -

The Colonial Theatre

227 Bridge Street


After leaving Jerry’s Market, the Blob continues feasting on the town’s residents. It finds its way to the Colonial Theater and oozes through the heating vent into the projectionist booth.

This image is the Blob, shortly after it emerges from the Colonial Theater. The projectionist and possibly several theatergoers have been consumed, and it’s now heading “across the street” toward the Downingtown Diner in search of another snack.

The breakout scene at the Colonial Theater had to be filmed twice because the first time someone fell (information provided by Barry Miller, who was one of the extras in this scene).

Taken from approximately the same angle, this shot shows the way the theater looks now. Even though the face of the building has been changed dramatically, the marquee still looks much as it did in 1958. And before you ask, yes it is still healthfully air conditioned.

The doors of the Colonial Theater have been replaced, but they still have the same look as they did in 1958.

Today, in addition to hosting the annual BlobFest, The Colonial Theatre still operates as a community movie house and fine arts theatre.

[googleMap name=”The Colonial Theatre”]227 Bridge Street, Phoenixville, PA[/googleMap]

FilmBuffRich on June 25th, 2007 | File Under Locations | No Comments -

Dowingtown Diner

81 West Lancaster Avenue

After escaping from the movie theater, several patrons headed across the street towards the Downingtown Diner. People eating in the diner saw what was going on and decided that was not the best place to be at that moment. Jane’s little brother attempted unsuccessfully to shoot the Blob with his toy gun and then ran inside. Jane and Steve followed him, only to become trapped as the Blob (now quite huge after many meals) enveloped the diner.

As the Blob begins to ooze in through the edges of the windows. Lt. Dave (Earl Rowe) sees the power wires running above the diner and decides to try electrocuting the Blob. He calls into the diner and tells Steve to get everyone down into the basement. When they get down there, they look out the window to see that the Blob has completely engulfed the building.

Currently, Chef Mcjon’s Downingtown Diner resides on the site of the original Downingtown Diner.

Like Jerry’s Market, there are conflicting stories about the Downingtown Diner. Some believe that the diner had undergone serious remodeling, with its exterior being drastically changed from how it looked in the film to its present appearance.

The current owner, John DeLuca, tells a different story. The original diner as seen in The Blob, a Mahogany Car Model, was removed from the site around 1960, presumably sent out west to Hollywood to be used in motion pictures. In 1966 the current diner was placed on the site, a Silk City model manufactured by Paterson Vehicle Company of Paterson New Jersey. DeLuca claims that his diner (serial number 6671) was the last one to roll off the company’s construction line.

The basement has been left intact, whichever story is correct, but the small window at the right of the doorway has been blocked by a handicap ramp. Even though it’s covered on the outside by a handicap ramp, the window that Steve and Jane eventually escaped through is still visible from inside.

The previous owner (who called it the Cadillac Diner) was happy to capitalize on The Blob theme, but disappointingly to fans, DeLuca is not following that tradition.

This is not to say that the new diner doesn’t have its own claim to cinematic fame, having been featured in the 2000 thriller Killer Instinct featuring Corbin Bernsen and Dee Wallace.

One important note. Unlike in the movie, the Colonial Theater and the Downingtown Diner location are about 18 miles apart. Or perhaps the movie-goers were all marathon runners!

[googleMap name=”Downingtown Diner” directions_to=”false”] 81 West Lancaster Avenue, Downingtown, PA[/googleMap]

FilmBuffRich on April 25th, 2007 | File Under Locations | No Comments -

The High School

320 Second Avenue


Sgt. Jim Bert (John Benson) shoots at the wires, but the attempt is unsuccessful at killing the Blob. The diner catches on fire.

As Steve tries to put out the fire, which has spread to the basement, he realizes that the Blob cannot tolerate the cold produced by the fire extinguisher. AH-HA! That’s why it didn’t follow them into the meat locker at Jerry’s Market!

He yells up to the telephone (which fortunately was left off the hook) to Dave to tell him about his discovery.

Jane’s father (played by Elbert Smith) realizes the best place to get a supply of CO2 fire extinguishers is at the high school. With the help of Steve’s friends, he breaks into the school to get all the CO2 extinguishers they can find.

They freeze the Blob, save the world, and live happily ever after.

This is the Samuel K. Barkley Elementary School in Phoenixville, PA. To the left you will see the same entranceway that was used in the filming of the movie. A fan wrote to me and told me that in 1957, when the movie was filmed, the school’s name was Memorial Junior High School (courtesy of Gerry Fox).

Some locals believe the school used in the filming was the old (now demolished) Downingtown High School. However, these pictures show conclusively that it was the Barkley Elementary School. Built in 1930, the school was known as Memorial Junior High School until 1964 a new middle school was built and Memorial Junior High was renamed Samuel K. Barkley Elementary.

[googleMap name=”The High School” directions_to=”false”]320 Second Avenue, Phoenixville, PA[/googleMap]

FilmBuffRich on March 27th, 2007 | File Under Locations | No Comments -

Jerry’s Market

While traveling through town, Steve and Jane see the old man’s dog huddled by the doors of the market owned by Steve’s father. When they approach the dog, they discover the doors to the store are unlocked and the lights are on, even though it’s after midnight. They go in to investigate. The Blob begins to chase them and to escape they retreat to the meat locker. For some unknown reason, the Blob doesn’t follow them in.

At the time that The Blob was filmed, there were two Jerry’s Markets – one in Phoenixville and one in Royersford – both owned by Jerry Fahringer. Although some feel that the scenes were shot in Phoenixville, the Royersford store was the one that appears in the movie.

The case of Jerry’s Market (and to a lesser extent the Cadillac/Downingtown Diner) is an example of the sadder and more frustrating side of location hunting. In the half-century since the production of the film, the building the once housed the Royersford Jerry’s Market has undergone numerous renovations, making it difficult to identify today, unless one knows what they’re looking for. In this case, you’d be looking for what is now the Lewis Road Plaza in Royersford, with a string of shops added onto the old Jerry’s Market, turning it into the anchor for a small strip mall.

For several years, through the 1990s and into the new century, the former Market section of the plaza was a Drug Emporium drug store, with a blue facade erected that blocked the distinctive arched roof of the market. (I wonder if the original Jerry’s Market sign still hangs underneath that facade, waiting to be rediscovered.) However, if one gets to the right angle in the parking lot, you can still catch a glimpse of the original roof. Compare the roof with the black and white picture taken during the filming of the scene and you can see the same rounded structure.

In November 2004, the Sly Fox Restaurant and Brewery opened on the spot. The original market appears to have been subdivided, with the Sly Fox only taking up half of the space that the Market originally inhabited. The other half, which contains what appears to be the remnant of the Market’s original entrance, is a Dollar Bargain store. The Drug Emporium’s blue facade has been painted brown.

Several of the Sly Fox employees are aware of the building’s place in cinema history. A walk through the restaurant suggests that where the Market’s meat locker was is now the restaurant’s microbrew.

[googleMap name=”Jerry’s Market” directions_to=”false”]Lewis Road & Oak Street , Royersford, PA[/googleMap]

FilmBuffRich on March 27th, 2007 | File Under Locations | No Comments -