Fox Fullerton Theatre

512 N. Harbor Boulevard,
Fullerton, CA 92832

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Showing 26 - 33 of 33 comments

FoxFullertonTheatre on June 13, 2004 at 10:41 pm


With all due respect to Mr. Rankin and his excellent description of “Skourasizing”, I must point out that this theatre was NOT Skourasized. We are one of the few southern California theatres left that did NOT have its proscenium gutted; all the quaintness and charm of the original auditrium is still intact, except for the auditorium murals, and our town is well-known for its historic mural restorations. The modernization for this theatre was accomplished by swathes of drapery and a large scaffolding unit built in FRONT of the proscenium which actually, fortunately, protected the proscenium all these years. While the auditorium murals weren’t painted over until the 70’s, the Beckman murals on the balcony lobby are still completely intact.

We are in a race against time to save this wonderful building! We have formed a nonprofit to bring the theatre back as a center for alternative film, concerts, plays, and special events.

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO HELP, the best way is to make a pledge that would only be “exercised” if we raise sufficient funds to purchase the building. We are over halfway to our goal of $3.5 million, but we must raise the rest by November of 2004 if we are to save it from the wrecking ball.

We would be happy to answer any questions you have, at:

(714) 607-0884

JimRankin on May 25, 2004 at 6:03 am

This theatre is one of some 200 that could be described as “Skouras-ized For Showmanship” which is the title of the ANNUAL of 1987 of the Theatre Historical Soc. of America. In the late 1930s through the 1950s, there occurred on the west coast of the United States a phenomenon known as the ‘Skouras style’ in recognition of the oversight of the Skouras brothers in their management of several cinema chains. They employed a designer by the name of Carl G. Moeller to render their cinemas/theatres in a new style best described as ‘Art Moderne meets Streamlined.’ The then new availability of aluminum sheeting at low cost was the principal material difference to this style allowing for sweeping, 3-dimensional shapes of scrolls to adorn walls and facades in an expression that would have been much more expensive and not at all the same in plaster. With the use of hand tinted and etched aluminum forms, the designers could make ornaments in mass production that allowed much greater economies of scale. The ANNUAL also show in its 44 pages how some 20 theatres were good examples of this combining of aluminum forms with sweeping draperies heavily hung with large tassels, and with box offices and facades richly treated with neon within the aluminum forms. Few of these examples survive today, but it was a glorious era while it lasted, and this collection of crisp b/w photos is a fitting epitaph by the late Preston Kaufmann.
To obtain any available Back Issue of either “Marquee” or of its ANNUALS, simply go to the web site of the THEATRE HISTORICAL SOCIETY OF AMERICA at:
and notice on their first page the link “PUBLICATIONS: Back Issues List” and click on that and you will be taken to their listing where they also give ordering details. The “Marquee” magazine is 8-1/2x11 inches tall (‘portrait’) format, and the ANNUALS are also soft cover in the same size, but in the long (‘landscape’) format, and are anywhere from 26 to 44 pages. Should they indicate that a publication is Out Of Print, then it may still be possible to view it via Inter-Library Loan where you go to the librarian at any public or school library and ask them to locate which library has the item by using the Union List of Serials, and your library can then ask the other library to lend it to them for you to read or photocopy. [Photocopies of most THSA publications are available from University Microforms International (UMI), but their prices are exorbitant.]

Note: Most any photo in any of their publications may be had in large size by purchase; see their ARCHIVE link. You should realize that there was no color still photography in the 1920s, so few theatres were seen in color at that time except by means of hand tinted renderings or post cards, thus all the antique photos from the Society will be in black and white, but it is quite possible that the Society has later color images available; it is best to inquire of them.

Should you not be able to contact them via their web site, you may also contact their Executive Director via E-mail at:
Or you may reach them via phone or snail mail at:
Theatre Historical Soc. of America
152 N. York, 2nd Floor York Theatre Bldg.
Elmhurst, ILL. 60126-2806 (they are about 15 miles west of Chicago)

Phone: 630-782-1800 or via FAX at: 630-782-1802 (Monday through Friday, 9AM—4PM, CT)

prpl72 on March 5, 2004 at 11:20 am

The Fox Theatre was an amazing place to be for a kid from the barrio. I use to go there all the time with friends and watch some pretty awesome movies. This is where I first saw E.T. and where I was horrified (in a good way) by Terror In The Aisles. The best part was being able to sit upstairs in the balcony and feel like royalty with the best seats in town. It’s about time the Fox gets some attention. It was a great theatre then and it could still be a fabulous one now. SAVE THE FOX!!!

Gregg on February 8, 2004 at 3:38 pm

The Fullerton Historic Theatre Foundation is racing against time to save purchase this theatre.
View link

AlfredWillis on November 21, 2002 at 11:03 am

Meyer & Holler were the architects and builders of record for this structure. However, the design can be attributed more precisely to their employee, Raymond McC. Kennedy. Kennedy was probably the best educated architect working in southern California in the 1920s. A man of immense talent, he was superbly accomplished designer in the Italian Mannerist revival style. The Fox Fullerton is the last remaining theatre designed by Kennedy in that style, which is marked by dramatic silhouettes, striking juxtapositions of form, and bold sculptural details. This fact makes the Fox Fullerton a rare treasure indeed.

Donald John Long
Donald John Long on November 18, 2002 at 6:35 pm

I have many fond memories of going to this theater in the early 1970s when I lived in Orange County. It was an art-house theater then and I saw many first-run art films like “Pink Floyd at Pompeii” and “Zabriskie Point” there and sci-fi double features. I used to hang out with the projectionist, Gordon Cardoza, in the projection room while the films were running after I had seen them. We used to talk, eat and sleep movies and rock music back then. Gordon was a really cool and knowledgeable hippie dude who just happened to live in Yorba Linda right next door to rock star Jackson Browne!

BHousos on March 6, 2002 at 6:55 pm


DwightRichardOdle on March 6, 2002 at 4:29 pm

March 2002: Theatre now in possible purchase mode by development company. Fullerton Historic Theatre Foundation formed to find ways to restore and reactivate this architectural treasure designed and built by Meyer and Hollar of Graumann’s Chinese and Egyptian Theatres fame.

Contact for more information.