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The ornamental tile work along the top of the Jergins Trust building are still in storage by the city of Long Beach. They are at a storage facility on San Francisco Street. Here are photos of the relics here…
Segask.. you asked about the “new construction” just west of the Chinese Theater. It’s literally right next door and it’s a huge multi-million dollar project. It will be the brand new “Madame Tussauds” Wax Museum. It is being buit from scratch and a large crane is hauling large I-beams up around the site. I saw the artist conception of the building and it’s not much higher than the theater and doesn’t appear that it will overtake the height of it, but it will be quite grand and, of course, very modern in design. This museum will probably overtake the very dated “Hollywood Wax Museum” a couple of blocks away. It appears the frame of the building is in place, but they have a way to go as far as wall construction goes. Will be keeping an eye on this.
Here is a shot of the newly renovatted theater today….
The State Theater will be this years venue for the 2008 California International Animation Film Festival. “CalAniFest 2008”, as it is called, will be held on July 19, 2008.
The State Theater has been newly renovated and is a genuine piece of historic old Modesto with a large screen, superb sound and digital projection. The film only screens Region 1 or Region 0 NTSC disks.
The official website for the festival is at http://www.calanifest.com
Can anyone tell me what films premiered here at the Egyptian between October, 1950 and July, 1951? I would really appreciate it. Thanks in advance!!
Can anyone tell me if the Lucille Ball movie “The Magic Carpet” (1951) premiered here? If so, what the date of the premier was? Thanks so much!
Thanks for the beautiful memory of the State Theater, Ken. Very nice of you to post this!
In 1965 I saw “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World” here during it’s second run. On the marquee it said in BOLD letters: “Filmed in Long Beach”. My grandmother, who owned a shop in the State Theatre (Jergins Trust Building) at 34 South Pine, said the cars that came around the corner during the filming in 1963 were not going slow but that they tore around the corner with squeeling tires about 4 times at high speed. At that time, you could still see the scuff marks on the street where the cars hit the street at the bottom of the hill.
I found a gorgeous photo of the theater in 1937…
The parking lot was still there through the 1960s and 70s. In the late 1980s, the Jergins Trust (State Theater) building was sadly torn down. In the years since, the parking lot has been taken over by the new Long Beach Convention Center. “NuPike”, later just called “The Pike” and after the Queen Mary arrived in late 1967 known as “Queen’s Park”, is now the subject of a new project where some of the historic buildings will be remodelled as shops and restaurants. Does anyone have updates on the progress of this?
This theater was discussed in a 1953 documentary about how the city of Holton, Kansas is surviving since the Arcada was closed down a year or two before. Several business owners, including the grocery store owner who states his business has gone down because mothers would send their children to the Saturday matinee and shop at his store, then pick up the kids on their way out. Since the theater closed, they go elsewhere.
This theater was shown in a 1953 documentary about how numerous theaters are closing due to the advance of television. They show the theater as “threatened with closure”. This theater survives, however, but many others in the documentary are now long closed or converted to other businesses.
Here is some news on what is to be built on the empty site. A developer is ready to start construction this summer on a high rise condominium project. The units will start at 400,000 and go up from there. I hope they will save the tunnel! This property has sat vacant since our beloved Jergens Trust was torn down in the late 1980s. Here are some artists conceptions of the new project to be called “Edgewater”…
You can still see a little part of the old Jergens Trust building at a restaurant called “Mums” at 144 Pine Street. They have apparently preserved the old German walnut wall panelling from a penthouse law firm in their nightclub called “Club Cohiba”.
I worked with the Houston Symphony during the summer of 1999 and Hurricane Alison came through and flooded the basement of Jones Hall the following year, including my old office. When they finally were able to re-enter the basement offices and store rooms a week or two later, they found the precious symphony music library, historic photo collection, and manuscripts destroyed. The worst loss was the historic grand piano which had autographs of famous pianists that played it over several decades (which I was fortunate to see the prior year) and a bass that was valued at over 250,000.00, not to mention drums, harps and other instruments. The Grand Opera House a few blocks away, lost many of their priceless costumes the same way.
I am looking at an old photo of the theater. The photograph was taken the week prior to May 16, 1938. The marqee says “GALA PREMIERE THU. NIGHT MAY 16 – DANIELLE DARRIEUX & JOHN LODER in HIS MAJESTY’S MISTRESS also TORPEDOED with H.B. WARNER”
I looked the debut film up and found it. It was renamed “KATIA” in everything I am reading, so perhaps the original title was a bit too spicy for the time. The theater in 1938 was called the ADMIRAL and the front of the building is fantastic art deco fantasy. On the left side of the lobby entrance is a “See’s Candy” shop and on the right is a “Health Juice Bar”.
The co-feature “Torpedoed” is dated 1937 and was renamed “Our Fighting Navy”, probably around the time World War 2 started.
Hi Jeane, I was raised only a few blocks away from 1951 until 1958 on Gower Street. My mom was a disc jockey for radio KMPC, which was a music station in those days and she sold records at Wallach’s Music Store at the corner of Sunset and Vine. In those early 50s days, we used to walk the 2 blocks at midnite, when mom got off work and dine at the Brown Derby Coffee Shop. The chicken noodle soup was amazing. We also ate at Nickodells restaurant on Selma and Argyle, which was always a treat. I remember the Taft Building in those days, because the big Rexall Drug Store was located on the corner of Hollywood and VIne Streets and there was a HUGE sign on the roof for Miller Highlife Beer that appeared around 1952 or so.
Here is a photo of the Taft Building in 1945…
Here is a photo of the Taft Building about 1958…
Does anyone know how the animation was created on either side of this theater? As a boy, I remember a waterfall on the left side of the screen and a volcano on the right side were animated before and between features. My guess is there were projectors over the paintings. I remember being fascinated by them as I enjoyed my Charms lime flavor giant lollypops and Necco Wafers.
To see what the San Diego Egyptian ORIGINALLY looked like when it was first built in 1926 go to…..
The San Diego Egyptian facade (in slightly streamlined form) is being retained for a condominium development being completed on Park Boulevard. There is a clear and large artist’s rendering of the building available on the following link……
Theater lovers were not happy to lose the beautiful theater, but at least we have the facade.. that’s more than most developments are doing.
Hi Jeane! If your window faced Vine Street and you were looking south, towards Sunset Blvd, then you were probably looking at this theater. Looking that direction, you would have also seen the NBC studios at the southeast corner of Sunset and Vine, which also had many stars in radio broadcasts during World War 2, as well, and it’s quite possible that Frank Sinatra would have performed there, as well, but if you could clearly see the front of the theater, it was the Montalban. Looking north would have afforded a view of the Hollywood Playhouse, which I believe was a playhouse in those days as well, so it doesn’t seem like the venue Sinatra would have used for a wartime concert.
Does anyone know how this theater did in the wake of Hurricane Katrina?
This theater is in the heart of New Orleans near Canal Street. That area is seeing looting and severe flooding. We will have a long wait to see what happened to this masterpiece!
The “large black structures” you speak of at the rear of the theater were the huge “Sensurround” speakers and sub-woofers installed for the movie “Earthquake” (1974). Both “Blazing Saddles” and “Earthquake” were made in the same year.
TC, that’s a great night shot! I wanted to add that you can just make out the beautiful and stately HOLLYWOOD HOTEL just next door, in the trees. It was a beautiful hotel that was torn down 3 years after your photo was taken. Here is a photo of the hotel.
In 1937 there was a movie called “Hollywood Hotel” that takes place at the hotel with Dick Powell and Benny Goodman. It’s the movie that contained the famous Busby Berkeley musical number “Hurray for Hollywood.”
Today, the site is home to the Kodak Theater and Hollywood-Highland Shopping Complex.
Thanks for sharing the great photo.
Virgil Junior High School (now called VIrgil Middle School) is only a block or so away from this site. Former students were Marilyn Monroe, Carole Lombard, and Richard Crenna. It is said all 3 used to go to movies in this theater and also at the El Capitan a few blocks to the south. Both are gone now.