Free Tour of the Saban Theatre (Formerly Fox Wilshire)
posted by nickmatonak on March 12, 2010 at 7:40 am
BEVERLY HILLS, CA — The Wilshire, now known as the Saban Theatre will be the next “All About” docu-tour hosted by the Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation on Saturday, March 20th at 10:30 am.
The tour will include a presentation of the history of the theatre as well as a basement to booth tour of areas not usually seen by the general public.
For more info please visit the Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation.
(Thanks to Don Solosan for providing the photo.)
For an Insider’s Peek (#3) into the Saban, go to www.youtube.com/lahtf
Ed Kelsey, who puts our theater history presentations together, was also involved in the recent restoration work done on this building and talks a bit about the proscenium.
This was for many years a 70mm roadshow house. Seemed the large screen was flat. Does anyone know if a curved screen was ever used at the Fox Wilshire? I think they ran a 70mm print of ‘This Is Cinerama’ after the film left the Dome. Was it shown flat or curved?
According to the information on the Fox Wilshire’s page on Roland Lataille’s Cinerama website: http://cinerama.topcities.com/wilshire.htm, a curved screen was installed in front of the existing flat screen for the move-over run from the Dome.
Wish I could be there for the tour. My memories of the Fox Wilshire are shamefully few, though I lived only a couple of miles away for a few years. A couple of memories: a “Gone With the Wind” that was probably the bastardized “widescreen” 70mm release in the 1970s. And my first “Blazing Saddles” — no idea if that was during its first run.
It was forty-five years ago this week that THE SOUND OF MUSIC premiered in Southern California at this theater. With a run of 94 weeks, I imagine THE SOUND OF MUSIC was the most successful film to ever play the Fox Wilshire/Wilshire/Saban.
And in case you missed it last week when first posted, here’s a little retrospective article I put together to celebrate the film’s 45th anniversary.
Wow! Very nice place and very well-maintained!
Here is Ed’s complete presentation on the Saban (Fox Wilshire).
In it, he talks about restoration work already done on the proscenium and auditorium, the entrance and marquee, and plans for future work. In particular, he details the thought processes in balancing an accurate restoration against the owners' wishes and modern tastes.
If you like Ed’s powerpoint presentations on the various theaters we’ve toured with our All About series, then you should enjoy this video (which incorporates recent photos with historic shots).
Hope you see you on Saturday!