Plaza Theater

12788 Hawthorne Boulevard,
Hawthorne, CA 90250

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Bob_Saltzer on May 8, 2015 at 11:23 pm
  1. Sat through “the Blob” six times for 25 cents in 1960 in the Plaza.
  2. Was there when the kitchen knife was thrown through the middle of the screen in 1960, always thought one of the Beach Boys did it, but heard it was “John John? Anybody know for sure who did it?
jgarza on May 16, 2012 at 11:47 am

Mr. Mcintyre you mention a Cal Theater in Hawthorne. Can you provide info as to where it was located and when it was in operation?

kencmcintyre on May 7, 2011 at 6:50 pm

There was an ad for the Plaza in the Torrance Herald in June 1942. The Plaza called itself “The Friendly Family Theatre”. The phone number was 299. Adult tickets were 30 cents, and child tickets were 11 cents.

kencmcintyre on July 31, 2009 at 6:24 pm

Correction, the item was dated June 1949, not 1948.

kencmcintyre on July 31, 2009 at 6:12 pm

This is from Boxoffice magazine in June 1948:

Sherrill Corwin and Lester Blumberg took over active operations of the Plaza and Cal Theaters in Hawthorne, having acquired controlling interest in the two houses from E.S. “Ned” Calvi.

kencmcintyre on November 12, 2008 at 5:36 pm

I should point out that this section of Hawthorne Boulevard is now a two block stretch of closed department stores. Very depressing. I think one of the stores is being converted into county offices.

kencmcintyre on November 12, 2008 at 5:33 pm

A large LA Times ad promoting development in Hawthorne included a sketch of the new Plaza Theater. The date was 1/17/26.

kencmcintyre on March 27, 2008 at 10:53 pm

An intermittently reliable source states that J.J. Frankenfelder designed the Plaza in 1926. This is unconfirmed, however.

letha on November 26, 2007 at 4:47 pm

I went to the Plaza theater from the time I was 10 years old until I left Hawthorne when I was 18. Also went back when I visited my relatives. I would go get chinese food in Inglewood and hit the movie at the Plaza….It was allowed back then…That started in 1943, many moons ago.

kencmcintyre on July 19, 2007 at 8:47 pm

Here is a November 1929 photo from the LAPL:

kencmcintyre on July 13, 2007 at 4:00 pm

Here is another photo from the site linked by LM in the preceding post. If you scroll all the way to the right in the older photo, you can see the Plaza:

kencmcintyre on July 6, 2007 at 9:03 pm

A subsequent article about the theater owners' appeal of the jury verdict states that the last film was shown at the Plaza on December 31, 1964. The last ownership group bought the theater in 1965 but never re-opened it to show films. The Plaza was torn down in 1971.

kencmcintyre on July 6, 2007 at 9:01 pm

Here is an article from the LA Times dated 3/5/72:

Condemnation Settlement OKd by Jury

A Superior Court jury has made an award of $80,000 in a condemnation suit involving the Community Redevelopment Agency and the owners of the former Plaza Theater. The theater, built in 1928 as a legitimate theater and later converted to a movie house, was located at 4355 Plaza Square and has been torn down.

Owners of the land produced expert testimony that the land was worth $400,000. Agency experts placed the value at $73,200. The site is included in a 36 acre, $11 million redevelopment project near Hawthorne and El Segundo Boulevards. Planned for an eventual commercial regional shopping center, the project is expected to include a Montgomery-Ward store, a J.C. Penney store and a third department store.

kencmcintyre on June 3, 2007 at 9:55 am

Advertised in the LA Times on 1/22/50. The Cal theater in Hawthorne is also advertised, but doesn’t appear to be listed on CT.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on April 5, 2005 at 11:22 am

The Plaza opened on 28th November 1927. It was demolished in August 1971

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on March 11, 2005 at 2:51 am

The Film Daily Yearbook, 1941 gives a seating capacity of 891.

MagicLantern on March 10, 2005 at 9:36 pm

Located at 126th Street and Acacia. In the 1940s, it cost 25¢ to see films here.

Peasprout on March 31, 2004 at 8:54 pm

Losing the Plaza was the beginning of the end for Hawthorne. One by one all of the great hangouts have been demolished, leaving only a crime-ridden, homogenized urban strip mall, indifferentiable from any other.