Holiday Theatre

8383 Topanga Canyon Boulevard,
West Hills, CA 91304

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The Holiday Theatre

The Holiday Theatre was opened around 1961 and one of those single screen versions of the multi-plex theaters of the 1970’s. After the Holiday Theatre closed it was gutted to become a hardware store.

Contributed by William Gabel

Recent comments (view all 13 comments)

thebigsee on April 8, 2004 at 4:28 pm

It’s odd to see the Holiday Theatre included amongst truly amazing places such as the Egyptian. I grew up in Canoga Park in the 1970’s/80’s and even then the Holiday was an eyesore. All it ever was was a big brick box in the classic 1960’s style, no ornamentation at all, and very much a dirty/grim dive. It can’t even be considered “shabby chic” or “faded glory” since there was never any chic or glory to become shabby or faded! Still, I remember with fondness attending 10-cent Saturday matinees in the late 70’s where they had an MC for the kids and gave away prizes and showed older kid-friendly films like “Island of the Blue Dolphins”. That was a last-ditch effort before it went to the inevitable end of all unfashionable theatres, i.e. Spanish language, and then it became an auto-parts store. At least it never stooped to porn! It’s still an auto parts store as of 2004, and a crappy one at that!

ticklemetorgo on April 12, 2005 at 4:53 pm

Before it became a spanish theater, I remember it being a dollar theater. It was all second run movies, but hey only a buck to get in. The place was a dive, it smelled horrible. People smoked there even though it was supposed to be no smoking, movies broke halfway through a showing lots of times and the neighborhood wasn’t exactly the safest feeling. But it was still a lot of fun anyway.

William on April 12, 2005 at 5:58 pm

Those dollar theatres are a true thing of the past. The people that ran the Holiday also ran the Criterion in Santa Monica, Meralta in Culver City and the Great Warner Beverly Hills Theatres as dollar houses. They would pickup theatres that were sitting dead by their former chains. In those days you could still make some money from those theatres in second or third run. They started out with the Criterion and Meralta theatres with double-features and priced at .49 cents for ALL SEATS. When they reopened the Warner Beverly Hills Theatre it was priced at one dollar & then $1.50 a seat. I remember going to the Criterion many times and seeing full houses on the weekends. The Criterion Theatre was a real money maker during this time. There were only a few dead theatres left in the Los Angeles areas that really worked.

Lavarus on March 30, 2007 at 9:44 am

In reference to William’s above mention of a theater on Mason @ Devonshire… That is now listed on this site as Loew’s Cinema Theatre in Chatsworth (/theaters/18536/).

Scott Neff
Scott Neff on November 7, 2007 at 12:46 pm

Which Century Theatres operated this? It’s too old for it to actually be the Syufy/Century chain, and I wasn’t aware the the Century chain from the east coast operated on the west coast. Was there a third Century chain?

William on November 7, 2007 at 1:21 pm

I have to look up the year order of operations for it. But it was operated by a third Century chain. In 1969 Statewide Theatres Circuit, Inc. (Amusement Corporation of America) sold their theatre holdings to Loew’s Theatres and after afew years sold them to GCC. And on some of them they were sold to the SRO chain.

Damon Packard
Damon Packard on December 13, 2008 at 4:27 am

wow I’m surprised to find this theater listed up here, i thought it was long forgotten. I used to ride my bike (as a kid) from the end of Devonshire to this theater and remember seeing things like “Orca”, “Laserblast” and “The Crater Lake Monster” here. Sometime in the early 80’s i can remember taking my grandmother to see a double bill of “Blade Runner” and “Dragonslayer” here. Yea i remember it as a dingy dive as described above, interesting it was owned by the old Criterion people. Few people remember the Santa Monica Promenade back in the late 70’s/early 80’s when it was a ghost town with closed down businesses and homeless., the Criterion was a seedy cheap dive then as well. i think i prefer it that way. Things will probably revert to the way they were on the course we’re going.

kencmcintyre on January 22, 2010 at 9:55 am

I think this was the Holiday in 1984:

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 18, 2013 at 12:18 pm

John P. Filbert was a contractor. The architect of the Holiday Theatre, according to his entry in the 1962 AIA directory, was William N. Bonham.

culcune on February 13, 2016 at 7:55 pm

I used to ride the RTD from Sherman Way/Topanga from Our Lady of the Valley back in ‘79-'80. I remember this theater as it listed its films as .99 Even as a fifth grader, I wondered how could they make money!LOL I do remember way later going in to Performance Auto Wholesale which was a major mail-order performance parts catalog store which featured multi-page ads in Hot Rod and other such magazines (way before the internet took hold) with my friend to order headers for his Dodge Ramcharger SUV in the same building.

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