Valuskis Theater

2252 E. El Segundo Boulevard,
Willowbrook, CA 90222

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This theater was located in the Willowbrook section of South Los Angeles.

It is listed as operating at least from 1941 through to 1952 in Film Daily Yearbooks.

Contributed by Ken McIntyre

Recent comments (view all 7 comments)

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on June 3, 2007 at 2:13 pm

No a different address and district. The Buena Park theatre is listed as the Grand Theater on this site.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on August 17, 2007 at 11:38 pm

An ad in the LA Times dated 1/26/30 mentions the Willowbrook Theater. It’s possible that this was another name for the Valuskis, but I can’t confirm based on the information available.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on March 24, 2008 at 1:40 am

2252 is a strip mall on the corner of El Segundo and Willowbrook. This church is at 2250:
http://tinyurl.com/2klsnh
http://tinyurl.com/2wcfsm

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 21, 2009 at 6:45 pm

Given the appearance of the church building, I wondered when I was out there if the addresses were changed over the years and this was actually the Valuskis. Unfortunately this style building is very common, so there’s no way to tell without more information.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 21, 2009 at 7:01 pm

Unfortunately the neighborhood is not conducive to a return trip, or I would ask someone in the church.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 21, 2009 at 10:21 pm

The Google Maps link above fetches something in the 800 block of El Segundo Blvd. If you change the city to Compton, and change the zip code to 90222, Google finds the right location. Willowbrook is an unincorporated community, not part of the city of Los Angeles, so this lot might have been annexed by Compton, or might just be served by the Compton branch post office.

Ken, I think you’re probably right about the church being the former theater. The County Assessor’s office gives the address of this parcel as 2248 E. El Segundo, but the next parcel to the east has a Willowbrook Avenue address, so the church parcel must include everything from 2248 to 2252. The Assessor gives the construction date of the building on this site as 1925, with an effective year built of 1932. It certainly looks like a theater in the Live Search Maps bird’s-eye view, too, with a two-story commercial building in front and an auditorium about twice its size in back.

However, Boxoffice Magazine of September 30, 1939, carried an item datelined Willowbrook, Ca., saying “Frank Valuskis has begun construction of a 450 seat theatre to be known as the Valuskis.” Given the age of the building and the fact that the lot east of it fronts on Willowbrook Avenue and, judging from the parcel map, was probably too narrow for a theater, I’d say Valuskis was probably not putting up a new building but renovating an existing theater. This could have been the Willowbrook Theatre, but we’d need some evidence of the Willowbrook’s address.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 21, 2009 at 10:22 pm

Thanks for the research, Joe.

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