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Having spoken with the LA Conservancy and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, I must disagree with the Oct 29 statement by Roadshow that there’s no longterm legal protection of buildings designated historic in Los Angeles. In some other states, cities don’t have such protection, but they do in Los Angeles. That doesn’t mean that any legal system is perfect. It does mean that in general, buildings designated historic stay.
That said, the National hasn’t been designated as historic, so doesn’t have any protection.
Nushboy, if you aren’t going to send them at cinematour, you could set up a free flickr.com website and post the photos (or the best of them) there. Then, you could link your flickr gallery with a post here, and everybody could see them.
Because Disney presents some live entertainment? because there’s a pipe organ at El Capitan? Because El Cap has gorgeous ornate decor that’s very exciting to tourists? Because El Cap is near the Chinese Theatre so lots of tourists find it convenient?
I really wish things were otherwise, and movies were showcased in sngle screens rather than being released on billions of movie screens at one time.
A further comment: you don’t need a wealthy man. Disney lavishly restored the El Capitan and redid the Crest (Westwood). A nonprofit reopened the Egyptian. Between private & nonprofit operators, countless other historic cinema treasures show movies full time or sometime in Los Angeles, more than anywhere else in the US.
What is needed is sufficient audience. And, if that’s not there- as obvious for a long time at the National, movies cease.
Roadshow, as to your 12:37 PM post, the LA theater comparable to the Seattle Cinerama is not the National, but the Cinerama Dome in LA, which has been saved, regardless of the flaws you see there. That’s the theater with 3 projector capacity to show Cinerama. Cinerama movies are in the WB library? Presumably, you wouldn’t be suggesting presentation of non-Cinerama films using 3 projectors or installation of 3 projectors & curved screen at the National?
Also, for an entire month, Close Encounters had an exclusive at the Ziegfeld. It was not in expanded release until December 14. Because of multiplexes and pirating, month long exclusives of mainstream movies don’t exist anymore. The Ziegfeld would do a lot better if they did!
November 15, 1977 was the World Premiere, in 70mm of Close Encounters of the Third Kind, at the Ziegfeld.
M Horner, your excellent analysis needs to also include the Pacific (Warner) in Hollywood. LA moviegoing earlier moved to Hollwyood from even more lavish, expensive, marble & gilt movie palaces of downtown (Orpheum, State, Los Angeles, United Artists, Million Dollar and others).
At the same 1100 seat size as the (Westwood) National, the Ziegfeld is privately owned and leased to Clearview. It continues to show movies, but it isn’t “saved” in some long term way. For new movies, its audiences is too little, because it doesn’t usually have a first run exclusive.
I prefer spending my money & time on scope films, but I seem to recall reading that moe than 80% of films are flat. So, why should it be important to this website that the screens be constant height rather than max size for all those flat films? There’s probably even more arthouse films that are flat……
and, in general, as is said again & again, this website stands for all cinemas, not only historic single screen movie theaters.
It seems to me that the Village is also a bigscreen theater. (spelled theater when not part of a name).
I see a word got clipped in the sending: Mann’s Village (original Fox Village).
Not to detract from the purpose of this news, but the intro has me thinking that if we are talking about open daily as a moviehouse, and currently seating more than 1000, and not considering a theater on an island, then there would be at least 3 still open: Mann’s Grauman’s Chinese, Mann’s , and El Capitan. Or, if “big screen” means mega sized, then I guess El Cap drops out though it is plenty large.
Mark, calm down.
you don’t have to post your comment on every LA theater page.
You didn’t post this comment in the above full form at the ONE and only page you would need to, to make your point- at the homepage news.
Interesting strategy: if so many people would appear for the National, imagine how many would appear for the Village, Bruin, Crest, Rialto, etc?
Unfortunately, I don’t anticipate many will appear for the National. Tell us how many appear, please.
How big a condo building can they build on the National site? No retail?
Warner aka Strand:
I’m not in LA. When I have visited LA, the National was one of my very favorite theaters to see a movie in. If only more people had attended movies here instead of Century City and elsewhere…..!
You can’t save the National, though. The general public,and those who govern, won’t understand. It isn’t a Golden Age Hollwyood, 1920’s, 1930’s movie palace, with an architectural style and history that IS appreciated by the general public.
Even if you could “save” the National as architecture, and I’m unsure if ANY buildings built as recently as the National get legal protection anywhere, you wouldn’t save it for movies- not daily, not ever. Other uses would be in the building. Way too few people attended for movies in its last years and it won’t get reused for entertainment.
Built almost two decades earlier, with exterior arctitecture more easily grasped, and a longer history of movie premieres, was the Cinerama Dome. That was saved, with a megaplex added- on land that was available.
In my humble opinion, I’d suggest people in Los Angeles work hard to preserve entertainment including a movie series in the recently closed Rialto in South Pasadena. The public can appreciate that historic theater.
And, I’d suggest people start to work to ensure that entertainment including a movie series and film premieres continue at the Village & Bruin. In 3 years, the lease is up, and Mann leaves. They are not profitable, even with the revenue of film premieres. If they are not going to have a megaplex added to them, they won’t continue as daily movie houses. And, they likely won’t have a megaplex added to them. So, work so live shows, concerts, etc. can be hosted, with a film series as stated. Or, those legally protected buildings will become retail stores, restaurants, whatever, but no more movies! Like the Rialto, the general public and government can appreciate why people would want the historic interiors preserved and continued for entertainment, of the Village & Bruin.
And, ATTEND movies at the Majestic Crest in Westwood if you’d like that jewelbox to continue! The decor was added, it isn’t historic, won’t be protected, but if enough people attend movies there, and the existing operator wishes to continue, it should.
Auditorium facing Screen:
One of the movie screens:
Main auditorium side wall decoration photo:
Good that people knew of its pending closure so they can say goodbye.
This theater was built with almost 1200 seats and above comment says after a remodel it had 800 seats. Split in two, that means each screen started with 600 and has 400 seats now? To have 130 attend on a Saturday evening doesn’t sound enough to keep the theater open under another oerator. My question is will the entire building be demolished?
When Ben Hur was shown, Philadelphia had recently demolished the Mastbaum, and in 1953, the Earle. That was not an era for historic preservation. Fortunately, later in the 1960’s, American cities, including in Pittsburgh, learned the value of preserving movie palaces.
People correctly cherish their experiences at the Boyd.
As to daily movies again, look at Los Angeles which in just the last couple weeks saw the closing for demolition of the National the closing of the Vine, and the announced closing of the NuWilshire. As Vito knows, movie exhibition changes. The DeMille is one of the 6 NYC movie palaces that showcased World Premieres of 70mm films (this thread).I’ve written that those people expecting to see the DeMille(aka Embassy 2-3-4) reopen as a single screen daily movie house were
unrealistic, and unfortunately enough, it was reported that the interior was recently gutted. To save the Boyd, it needs live events to make its bread & butter. A film series will be great, but can’t be its primary use.
As to what’s up now, all things take time.
If you try to buy a ticket on that website, for that movie at this theater, it won’t let you, because the National is closed.
For the regular movies (not classics) is the balcony open? Is the curtain opened before the movie & closed afterwards?
Today, NBC Inside Weekend, TV, showed the marquee and inside, the party for Hillary Clinton’s 60th birthday.
Let’s try that link again,