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Cinerama Dome and ArcLight Hollywood

6360 Sunset Boulevard,
Los Angeles, CA 90028

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Barry Lyndon opens at the Cinerama Dome, 1975

Viewing: Photo | Street View

A geodesic dome built for the Cinerama format, this mini-Epcot like structure is a wonder of 1960’s showmanship. Featuring an enormous curved screen and ample seating underneath the large dome, the Cinerama Dome is famous for blending first run films with the occassional revival classic. The Cinerama Dome opened November 7, 1963 with 937 seats and the World Premiere in 70mm of “Its a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World”. Additional 70mm films included the West Coast premiere of “The Greatest Story Ever Told” on February 17, 1965, the World Premiere of “The Battle of the Bulge” on December 16, 1965 and the World Premiere of “Ice Station Zebra” on October 23, 1968. In 1999, The Dome exhibited an exclusive week long showing of the original “Blade Runner” answer print.

The Cinerama Dome was recently renovated by Pacific Theatres and the theater is now able to exhibit 3-strip Cinerama features — something it never did even when it first opened. The Cinerama Dome and the Seattle Cinerama are currently the only theaters in the US equipped to show 3-strip Cinerama prints. In 2002, the restored “This Is Cinerama” was shown in 3-strip Cinerama, the first time it had been screened at the Cinerama Dome. The original 3-strip Cinerama version of “How The West Was Won” was shown in February 2003 and October 2005.

A new 14-screen luxury theater, ArcLight Hollywood, now adjoins the original Cinerama Dome and offers first-run commercial, art, revival, and other specialty films. A unique movie lover’s paradise.

Recent comments (view all 1,384 comments)

HowardBHaas on July 8, 2018 at 11:22 am

what does that mean? are you saying 2001 was projected in 2.39 scope?

RogerA on July 8, 2018 at 1:07 pm

2001 was and is 70mm 2.2:1 2.39 is digital scope

edlambert on July 8, 2018 at 5:51 pm

Roger, that must mean that either the original image was stretched (which wouldn’t be that much of a stretch) or that the frames were cropped to produce the same ratio. Either way, it seems, there was either distortion or loss of image. The mathematics of ratio permit nothing else. No?

RogerA on July 8, 2018 at 7:35 pm

2001 was shot on 65mm with spherical lenses so there was no compression. The aspect ratio of the negative is 2.20:1 The 70mm prints are 2.20:1 There is no stretching or cropping. Some of 2001 was shot in Todd-AO and that was 2.2:1

edlambert on July 9, 2018 at 6:02 am

Roger, but you said that digital presentation is at 2.39:1. That can only mean that the digital presentation stretches the negative or crops it, thereby achieving the same effect.The aspect ratio can be changed in only one of these two ways.

MarkNYLA on July 9, 2018 at 7:30 am

2001 is being presented in the Dome on 70mm in it’s correct aspect ratio of 2.20:1, as it was photographed. There is NO stretching or cropping. Period. Full stop.

RogerA on July 9, 2018 at 8:28 am

To change aspect ratio from one medium to another i.e. film to digital, 70mm to 35mm, then the image is either cropped or letter boxed. Many movies these days are released in several different formats and aspect ratios. The camera original source material is often different formats. It is always cropped to make it fit.

Gone With The Wind was released in 70mm and those prints were cropped the original is 1.33:1 and the 70mm prints were 1:85 matted.

The Ten Commandments was shot in VitaVision so the 70mm prints were cropped.

2001 of course was shot on 65mm film for a 70mm release print (2.5mm extra space on each outer edge for sound tracks) The 70mm prints are not cropped but the 35mm version is cropped a little on the top and bottom and is much shorter than the roadshow version. The digital version is either cropped or letter boxed probably the latter.

AMC and other chains crop 20% or more in the projectors. If a theater does not have movable masking or the masking is limited they will crop the image to fit the screen. It is standard procedure in most multiplexes to crop the image to make it fit the screen or letter box it. Very few theaters bother to run a film in the exact proper aspect ratio that is why the Arclight in Hollywood is a favorite among the film crowd.

PeterApruzzese on July 9, 2018 at 10:28 am

RogerA – the new 35mm print of “2001” that I ran back in 2004 was pillarboxed on the sides to preserve the 2.20:1 aspect ratio. The current 2K DCP of “2001” is also pillarboxed, presumably the new 4K will do the same.

edlambert on July 9, 2018 at 6:43 pm

Well! My dream has always been to operate a cinema that presents films in the way the director wanted them shown. Thus, the full height of my screen would always be the “1,” and there would always be enough screen for everything from the 1.37 to the 2.76—with sufficient curvature in the screen so that the throw of the projector would be the same distance both to the center of the screen and to the sides. No, I wouldn’t have curvature along the top and bottom. That looks funny. Here’s hoping, too, that the engineering of lenses will soon be able to accommodate deeper curvature so that projector or projection room glass does not require the matting that actually eliminates some of the image. Perfect squares or circles from top to bottom and side to side when the test strip is projected.

alisonwriter on July 10, 2018 at 10:25 pm

Hi there, I’m working on a project about the Cinerama Dome and would like to interview former (and current) employees—projectionists, managers, ushers, ticket sellers, janitors, etc. No on-camera required. alisonnastasi (at) gmail

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