Plaza Theatre

6337 E. Spring Street,
Long Beach, CA 90808

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OCRon on November 10, 2016 at 8:13 am

Plaza Theatre timeline:
Opened February 15, 1966.
Closed: July 30, 1977.

The $250,000 Plaza Theatre opened February 15, 1966, with the French film Circle of Love directed by Roger Vadim’s and staring his wife, Jane Fonda. Not to leave out the Italians, Love, Italian Style was a later attraction. The Press-Telegram said it was theater management’s intention to create an upscale art house showing quality films from around the world for a “selective viewing audience.”

One of the owners was Jack Feder who owned the Roxy in downtown Long Beach. The celebrities in attendance on opening night included comedian Marty Ingels and starlet Edy Williams

Only a few weeks after the theater opened there were letters on the Press-Telegram’s editorial page that denounced the theater as being bad for the neighborhood because of its films. There were also threats in the family oriented community to picket the theatre. Management must have listened because starting in June the films became mainstream and they started showing family fare such as Disney’s The Jungle Book.

Newspaper ads from May of 1971 announced that the Plaza had the exclusive Long Beach walk-in theater run of Tora! Tora! Tora!.

The Plaza closed suddenly on July 30, 1977 and lettering went up on their marquee announcing that the building was available for retail use.

rivest266 on December 20, 2014 at 5:22 pm

February 15th, 1966 grand opening ad in photo section.

MJuggler on December 28, 2009 at 9:50 am

WOW! I shop in that mall all the time now and never knew. Only been here 16 years. Missed out on the Lakewood too :–(

ReverendDan on June 6, 2008 at 11:51 am

Thank you for the info on my neighborhood theater! “Help” was the first film I saw there at the age of six. The Plaza was also where I saw my first Midnight Movie: I think it was 1974 or 1975, and the line up included a few Betty Boop cartoons, a ton of Beatle films and “Reefer Madness.” I had just gotten into Jr. High. I went with my friend Rich and I had to take along my ten year old sister. We had a great time! I remember when Tora Tora Tora was there, but the film that lasted there the longest had to be “MASH.” This was the place where I saw all those Sunn International documentaries, like “Chariots of the Gods”, “The Bermuda Triangle” and I think there was even one about Bigfoot.

kencmcintyre on November 6, 2007 at 12:23 am

That’s not too far from where I work. Let me see if I can get out there and take some pictures.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 5, 2007 at 3:10 am

Listed in the Los Angeles Times of February 10, 1971, as an independent theatre, located at Palo Verde Avenue and Spring Street.