Panorama Theatre

9110 Van Nuys Boulevard,
Panorama City, CA 91402

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Panorama Theatre

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Originally built and opened in 1949 as a single screen, 1,000-seat movie theatre. The Panorama Theatre was converted into a two screen theatre in the 1970’s era. It closed in the early-2000’s and now serves as a church.

Contributed by jeff Zimmer

Recent comments (view all 24 comments)

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on August 1, 2009 at 2:26 am

This was in Boxoffice in June 1949:

Max Torodor broke ground last week for his 1,000-seat Panorama Theatre in Van Nuys. Ceremonies, led by Andy Devine, featured sinking a “time capsule” containing current southland and Hollywood mementos.

BradE41
BradE41 on February 9, 2010 at 9:32 pm

I love the look of the theatre.

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on February 9, 2010 at 9:44 pm

I like the name,looked pretty cool from the outside too bad there are no inside shots.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on October 16, 2010 at 12:12 am

Looking at the pictures you got to LOOK to find the Theatre.

robinto44
robinto44 on August 5, 2011 at 8:14 am

My grandfather, Max Torodor was one of the three original partners. My father, Don Torodor managed the theater for many years. I remember spending so much of my childhood there helping the “candy girls” as we called them and having crushes on the ushers. I also remember my sister and I being allowed to go up to the projection room with Forest, the Projectionist and watch the movies from there. It always had a wonderful musty smell combined with the smell of buttered popcorn. I remember a Beatle movie, maybe “Help”? They sold Beatles memorabilia on the counter and I swear I remember them selling Beatle wigs!?!? I also remember very scary Vincent Price movies. I was too young to see a lot of the movies that were shown. I was born in 1957 so I probably wasn’t hanging out there until at least 1962. Does anyone remember Alfedo Gonzales? He started out taking tickets at the door and was “promoted” to the candy counter. From there to Assistant Manager and then to Manager!! He is a wonderful person. Many years later he approached my dad about opening his first restaurant “La Serenita” which he finally opened next door to the theater, where CHICHI’s Pizza used to be. A friend of mine just sent me this link and it was so great to read all posts. What a trip down memory lane!

holland53
holland53 on November 1, 2011 at 6:25 am

Great comments. Wonderful memories including the “crying room”. Was in those days a “chic” theater. Saturdays were always matinees with at least 2 films (mostly science-fiction) and a series (you had to keep coming back). This is around ‘62-'65. Saw Hard Day’s Night and Help there, as well as countless (musical)films. In those days you could stay and watch a film(s) again without paying extra. Wonder if Bill Robinson or Alfredo remember the usher, Jay Hammond, from late 50’s/early 60’s. Thanks for this wonderful walk down memory lane.

rivest266
rivest266 on August 9, 2012 at 8:54 pm

This opened on December 19th, 1949. It’s grand opening ad has been uploaded here.

radavis33
radavis33 on March 20, 2014 at 9:14 pm

The nine photos I uploaded today were taken by me in July 2004, on a nostalgia drive through the Valley (where I lived from 1953 through 1973). I remember spending many late 50s – early 60s summer days at this theater with my friends watching almost exclusively Sci-Fi. We saw The Time Machine six times, with all but one as 2nd feature. I recall the crying room, as well as the shock of leaving the darkened theater (via the rear exit) after watching two movies, to find that it was still bright outside – with plenty of time left to play.

holland53
holland53 on March 21, 2014 at 6:22 am

Thanks very much for the nine photos radavis33. Haunting pictures, as I do remember all those different locations in/out of the theater. After Americana Theater opened Panorama Theater lost a lot of business. Strange—I don’t remember at all when it had two theaters. It was one big red-pluched hall with lights on the side walls. There was also a bench outside of the restrooms—if you misbehaved you had to sit there until the usher said you could leave.

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