Maurice Cheepen was the man who created ‘Stepney’s Luxurious Troxy’, one of the most affectionately remembered cinemas in London. A Jewish immigrant from Nazi Germany, Cheepen made sure to show from the outset that the venue was a cut above the rest. Maurice was a flamboyant manager who staged publicity stunts to promote new films. These included a horse-drawn pumpkin coach to advertise Cinderella, a man dressed as a vampire to walk around the East End handing out leaflets that promoted Dracula. Cheepen was a born showman, and got up to many tricks to publicise his shows – machines issuing fake dollar bills, ‘red indians’ on horseback, and horse drawn pumpkin coaches were all part of his stock-in-trade.
From The London Gazzette, 5 April, 1935:
LIST of ALIENS to whom Certificates of Naturalization have been granted by the Secretary of State, and whose Oaths of Allegiance have been registered in the Home Office during the month of March, 1935. The date shown in each case is the date on which the Oath of Allegiance was taken.
Cheepen, Morris (known as Maurice Cheepen); No Nationality; Cinema Manager;
26, Rowhill Mansions, Clapton, E.5. 6 March, 1935.