Grand Theater

2665 Mission Street,
San Francisco, CA 94110

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Grand Theatre exterior

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Grand Theater opened in 1940. It was designed for D.B. Levin by architects Albert O. Lansburgh and S. Charles Lee in an Art Deco Style. Interior decorations were carried out by the Heinsbergen Decorating Co. All seating was on a single level.

It became a Chinese import store, today a Dollar store. If you go inside, you can still make out the old auditorium.

Contributed by Juan-Miguel Gallegos

Recent comments (view all 12 comments)

bago1
bago1 on April 30, 2005 at 1:54 am

i remember going to see empire strikes back and return of the jedi at this theater back in the 80s those were the good old days when ever i go to the mission district and i see the sign i remember with nostalgia it,s some sort of asian store now

brohrs
brohrs on October 13, 2005 at 5:31 am

I grew up in the forties going to the Grand for three pepsi bottlecaps or ten cents. The usual show was a three stooges short two cartoons and two westerns. I lived around the corner on bartlett st. and went to st. james boys school. Anyone one out there know me?

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on October 28, 2005 at 1:04 pm

From the SF Public Library website:

View link

guillyca
guillyca on April 19, 2006 at 4:36 pm

The last time I went here was when I watched The Hitcher & Trick or Treat starring the guy who played Skippy in Family Ties with Spanish subtitles & that must have been around the end of 1987.

August
August on May 6, 2006 at 6:43 am

I must heartily thank the darkened cinema I spent the better part of my childhood in: Long live the remarkable Grand Theater! Fortunately, I grew up to be a pretty well adjusted guy, and even dated girls, despite my love for Horror Films and Monster Movies (it didn’t do bad for Kirk Hammet of Metallica, either). During the late 1960s and early 1970s, the Grand Theater (on Mission St. @ 23rd St. in San Francisco) specialized in Horror, Sci-Fi and Fantasy films and nothing else! As a grammar school-aged monster maven, I was there for every new Triple Feature, which changed every Wednesday. I recall that admission was a mere 50¢ for Children — hell, I’d pay $15 to see some of those triple features in the darkened Grand again.

The Grand booked first, second and third run films, and I sat through a great majority of them, and the place was like church to me. Even as a little boy, I often wondered why the other kids ran around and talked during the screenings (“Hey, the movies are running, people!”), so I generally avoided weekend or holiday matinees — sometimes getting my Mother or Aunt to take me on school nights (“No kids!”). GAMMERA THE INVINCIBLE, DRACULA: PRINCE OF DARKNESS, THE SKULL, HERCULES AGAINST THE MOON MEN, THE WONDERS OF ALADDIN, GHIDRAH: THE THREE-HEADED MONSTER, and more, all haunted me there.

The Grand acted as a larger than life supplement to Bob Wilkins' “Creature Features” on KTVU Channel 2 http://www.bobwilkins.tv , and was part of my regular monster movie diet. When the mid-‘70s Kung Fu movie boom knocked the Horror Boom out of its throne, The Grand was the showcase for Chop Sockey triple features and the admission went up to 75¢ for Children (Oh, the humanity!). Guess what? I went with the tide. Somewhere in the late 1970s, the Grand changed again — this time it becoming a showcase for Filipino films. After that, I lost track of the Old Girl, and was shocked when I returned to my old neighborhood (I still live in San Francisco) only to find that it was gutted to house a Chinese junk shop. To paraphrase Vincent Price from THE COMEDY OF TERRORS: “Is there no morality left in this world?”

Today, I am trying to emulate the feel of the old Grand Theater triple features with a series of Halloween Horror Movie programs at the historic Castro Theatre http://www.castrotheatre.com called SHOCK IT TO ME! http://www.shockit2me.com/frames/c_movies.htm Long live the memories of The Grand Theater!

August Ragone

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 7, 2008 at 3:05 pm

Here is a photo from a current loopnet ad:
http://tinyurl.com/2ee5am

MightyMezzo
MightyMezzo on March 14, 2010 at 8:40 pm

Photo of interior of Grand Theatre, taken a few weeks ago. Still some interesting architectural details in that dollar store.

View link

darquil
darquil on July 30, 2010 at 8:37 pm

I’ve posted some recent photos here.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on July 31, 2010 at 12:45 am

Don’t try and locate the theatre in “DIRTY HARRY” that part was filmed on the back lot at Warner Brothers, and not in downtown San Francisco.

AnomalousA
AnomalousA on November 3, 2010 at 6:25 pm

Some new photos October 2010:

here and hereand [http://www.flickr.com/photos/anomalous_a/5145001186/in/photostream/]here.[/url]

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