Filmarte Theatre

1228 Vine Street,
Los Angeles, CA 90038

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Showing 1 - 25 of 32 comments

rivest266 on September 8, 2019 at 11:25 am

Opened as La Mirada in March 1926. 1st found in the LAT dated March 6th, 1926 in the photo section.

DavidZornig on October 11, 2017 at 7:27 pm

Article about the Filmarte.

vienna on February 1, 2017 at 5:09 am

In 1975, I moved into an apartment complex on La Mirada Ave, a half a block down on the same north side of the street as the Filmarte. I still live in the same complex 42 years later. When I first saw the building, it was being used as a rehearsal sound stage for major musical acts of the time. The interior of the building was sufficiently large enough for the acts to deploy their full stage tour sets and rehearse as if they were playing in a large venue. You could walk by the building and hear through the closed doors the likes of Three Dog Night and Maria Muldar; on particularly hot summer nights, the very large loading dock doors on the north side of the building were sometimes open for ventilation and, if the act didn’t try to conceal their presence by hanging light, loose drapes over the doorway, passersby could catch a glimpse of the performers.

There was a small and reputedly very high end French restaurant located at the corner of the building in the space shown as the “Autocrat Cleaners” in the photo at the top of this page. The restaurant closed suddenly and I noticed, when I passed by, an IRS seal on the door citing non-payment of taxes.

The building technically still stands. The fire (which was an event I somehow managed to sleep through) did indeed gut the interior, but the walls and most of the roof remained. The fire itself was rumored by some in this neighborhood as being possibly connected to other fires around the same period that gutted the Hollywood Ranch Market, the Ametron store next door to the Filmarte, and a few others. After the fire, the building interior was fully gutted, excavations were made to create underground parking, and the interior was rebuilt as office space. One of the casualties of the renovation was an inscription some fan(s) had made in wet cement of undying love for Donna Summer when the steps had been replaced during a previous remodeling. The building was little used after the fire and renovation and stood vacant for extended periods of time. After a time, the County of Los Angeles Dept. of Mental Health moved into the building and established a clinic, which is still functioning.

A bit of trivia: the last photo ever or Jame Dean alive was taken directly across the street from the Filmarte location.

rivest266 on August 5, 2016 at 4:25 pm

May 6th, 1928 grand opening ad in photo section. It opened on the 9th.

adsausage on February 21, 2016 at 12:29 pm

Steveo alluded to this. It was known as Hilliard Studio Sound Stage, for a while at least. In 1971, it hosted ‘Ye Craftsmen’s Christmas Faire & Medieval Market’ – mimes, minstrels and festivities. See photo.

nicedad11 on March 18, 2013 at 5:22 am

There is no doubt that the original Filmarte theater at 1228 N. Vine was the Steve Allen Playhouse. Steve often went outside with a cameraman and remarked about the location and La Mirada Street, and the now closed Ranch Market across the street. is mistaken.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 9, 2012 at 1:43 am

The fire that destroyed the Filmarte building took place in July, 1990. Here is an article about it from the Los Angeles Times.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 9, 2012 at 1:37 am

Jimmo531: A history page for the Pickford Center for Motion Picture Study, which is located in a building erected in 1948 as a radio and television studio for the Don Lee-Mutual Broadcasting Company, and which later became the home of KHJ-TV (CBS channel 2) lists The Joey Bishop Show, The Newlywed Game, and The Dating Game as shows that originated from that studio, which was at 1313 N. Vine Street.

I have no idea why IMDb has these shows, or the Steve Allen show, originating from the Montalban’s address. Though it had been owned by CBS for many years, and was used as a studio for live radio broadcasts, for about three decades beginning in 1954 the house at 1615 Vine was called the Huntington Hartford Theatre, and operated primarily as a legitimate house. I don’t think it was equipped for television broadcasts as the Hartford, though it did have a projection room and ran at least one movie during that period (Long Day’s Journey Into Night, which premiered there in 1962.)

This web page has a 1963 photo of the marquee of the Steve Allen Playhouse, and even though it is a fairly tight shot, taken at night, it is definitely recognizable as the old Filmarte building, not the Huntington Hartford Theatre.

So, the logical explanation for the discrepancy is that IMDb got the address wrong not only for the Steve Allen show but for the other three shows you listed. Other Internet sources giving the same address are probably getting it from IMDb.

jimmo531 on August 8, 2012 at 7:05 pm

Why does give 1615-29 North Vine Street as the address for where “The Steve Allen Westinghouse Show,” as well “The Joey Bishop Show,” “The Newlywed Game” and “The Dating Game” were recorded, and not the 1228 N. Vine St. address, formerly known as the La Mirada and Filmarte theaters, then briefly as “The Steve Allen THeater?”

Also, the venue of 1615-29 N. Vine St. is now showing as “The Ricardo Montalb├ín Theater,"its history noting it was once called "The Vine St. Theater,” which some sources also claim is where “The Steve Allen Westinghouse Show” and these others I mentioned were also produced.

May someone reading this please clear up this discrepancy?

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 3, 2011 at 9:04 am

David James’s book “The Most Typical Avant-Garde” says that this theater became the Filmarte in July, 1928.

Bob Feigel
Bob Feigel on February 23, 2011 at 4:21 pm

@steveorini – hi. Since you were there several times was there still the imprint of a salami in the sidewalk outside the theater?

steveo on February 23, 2011 at 9:03 am

The name of the place at this time was called The Vine St. Video Centre, and the left side of the building had a small restaurant.
there was another small storefront on the right…

steveo on February 23, 2011 at 8:38 am

This is Steveorini again…the Troy I was speaking of in the above post that recorded his show at the Filmarte in the 70’s was talk show host Troy Cory, and this would have been somewhere around the mid 70’s.
His show aired on KTLA and also KCOP.There are some clips of him on youtube.

steveo on February 23, 2011 at 12:06 am

The building was owned by Songwriter Bob Hilliard’s wife in the 70’s..
how long she owned it before that I dont know…yes, the theatre
was used in the 70’s for video production.Barbara Mandrell taped there, as well as this singer named Troy Something or other..)
I drove past there the other day as was saddened to see the new building.Used to go there as a teen to watch the Allen Show.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 6, 2010 at 8:56 pm

That’s a grim replacement for the pleasant building that housed the Filmarte. The new building is probably bad for the mental health of people who have to look at it every day.

menziesii on September 24, 2010 at 2:47 am

Bob do not recall seeing it, but do remember hearing of it.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on September 22, 2010 at 5:43 am

The Filmarte’s career as a movie house ended by 1952. Daily Variety of July 14, 1952, reported that Fox West Coast Theatres had leased the Filmarte Theatre to a “telepix producer.” That was most likely Columbia’s television subsidiary, Screen Gems, which produced Art Linkletter’s “House Party” for television.

IMDb says that Linkletter’s show aired from CBS Television City, but that must have been in later years. Television City didn’t begin operating until November 16, 1952, and “House Party” had begun airing on September 1 that same year, so it most likely aired from the Filmarte from its first show until some time no later than 1962, when Steve Allen’s syndicated nightly show began using the venue.

The Filmarte had aka’s of Art Linkletter Playhouse and Steve Allen Playhouse during its TV studio years, but of course never operated as a movie theater under those names. I’m not sure if the house continued in use for television after Allen’s show was canceled in 1964.

Bob Feigel
Bob Feigel on September 21, 2010 at 6:46 pm

@menziesii – do you remember an imprint of a salami in set in the sidewalk outside the stage entrance when the Steve Allen Show was there?

menziesii on July 20, 2010 at 2:01 am

Stood in the alley between the market and the theater many a night and watched the Steve Allen Show being filmed through an open fire exit door.

Some night there wer empty seats and Steve would motion us in to sit down and watch the show.

Didn’t know until I read the above that this was the Art Linkletter Theater. Was twice one of the grade-school kids on House Party, back in the ‘50s.

William on November 7, 2007 at 5:33 pm

The Hollywood Theaters, Inc. (1931) chain included the following theatres:

LOS ANGELES: Apollo (Hollywood), Carmel (West Hollywood), Film Art (Hollywood), Paramount (aka. Loma), Stadium, Vista, Carlton, Rivoli

Home Office was at 8900 West Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA

All of those theatres were operated by West Coast Theatres and later under the Fox West Coast Theatres banner.

William on November 7, 2007 at 5:17 pm

There was a fire around that time frame.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 7, 2007 at 4:41 pm

Assessor information for the addresses 1224-1230 N. Vine St. gives a construction date of 1993 for the building on this property. I checked the information for the adjacent properties (in case of address migration) and they both have modern construction too. It looks as though the Filmarte is closed/demolished rather than just closed.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 15, 2007 at 5:45 am

Here’s a 1957 photo from the L.A. Library of a theatre called the Linkletter Playhouse, from which Art Linkletter did his television show. On the picture’s full data page (the library doesn’t allow linking to those, unfortunately), the address is given as 1232 North Vine Street. It must be the Filmarte, but with a slightly altered street number.

moviebear1 on April 17, 2006 at 9:34 pm

This theatre is also where in the early 60s Steve Allen did his TV show that was opposite The Johnny Carson TONIGHT SHOW. I still remember him watching people on the street and pointing his camera across the street at the Dance studio.