Grand Theater

6177 Beach Boulevard,
Buena Park, CA 90621

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This theater on Beach Boulevard became a Pussycat Theater in the late-1960’s after showing Spanish language films. Often a target for police raids and community protest, it was shuttered in the early-1990’s.

Contributed by scottfavareille

Recent comments (view all 17 comments)

MsJVonFink
MsJVonFink on January 26, 2005 at 1:12 am

I came across a record about two years ago in a local store by some obscure modern punk band that had a photo of The Pussycat on the cover. Unfortunately I didn’t buy it!

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 12, 2006 at 5:10 am

From the USC digital archives, a 1951 photograph of the Valuskis Theatre.

scottfavareille’s 2004 link to the interesting (if somewhat lurid) OC Weekly article about the 1951 kidnapping and murder related to this theatre no longer works, but if you want to read it it’s available from Google’s cache. Do a Google search on “Velaskis Theater” and the link to the cached article “Live Noir” will be among the handful of results.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 20, 2006 at 4:22 pm

TYPO ABOVE: of course I meant; Do a Google search on “Valuskis Theater” to find the cached page.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on March 6, 2007 at 5:30 pm

Valuskis should be put in the aka line. Here is an article dated ¼/74 about the Pussycat Theater:

‘Red light’ suit hits porno movies

Claiming she has been “offended and outraged” by the operation of the Pussycat Theatre in Buena Park, Mrs. Donna Bagley decided Thursday it should be closed â€" and she filed suit under the state’s Red Light Abatement Act. Her action in Santa Ana Superior Court is the first under the Red Light Abatement Act to be brought by a private citizen, although Dist. Atty. Cecil Hicks has used it with some success against bars and restaurants featuring nude entertainment.

Mrs. Bagley, who lives at 5962 Stanton Ave., Buena Park, contended in her petition she has been “significantly offended, outraged and has suffered shame, embarrassment and emotional distress as a result of the public scandal caused by the continuous and daily presence, advertisement and public exhibition of patent hard-core pornography” at the Pussycat Theatre, 6177 Beach Blvd. She said the theater is close to the area where she resides and works and that it attracts “criminal elements, undesirables, deviates and dropouts” and lures “immoral persons” into the area.

Her suit against Pussycat Theatre also names Vincent Miranda of Hollywood, its operator; and Walnut Properties, Inc., believed to be the owners of the building which for years was Buena Park’s only theater. However, the theater was converted to X-rated films only a short time ago, and since then has had a running battle with Buena Park police who have seized dozens of prints of what they insisted were hard-core pornography. Their last raids shut down a highly advertised showing of the moneymaking “Deep Throat.”

Santa Ana Superior Court Judge Mark Soden set Jan. 21 as date for hearing arguments on an order to show cause why an injunction should not be issued against the theater. This is a civil proceeding, first drawn into law in California to cope with the notorious Barbary Coast in San Francisco. Its major penalty is closure of “places of assignation” and a court order to auction the assets of the places involved. The Orange County district attorney used the act in eight prosecutions. He won them all and most assets have already been sold from the various bars which were closed. This is the first against a theater.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on June 3, 2007 at 6:44 pm

Here is a direct link to the article first posted by scottfavareille. It concerns a young girl that disappeared from this theater in May of 1951 and was later found dead.

JayAllenSanford
JayAllenSanford on June 22, 2007 at 4:26 am

There’s a cover article in today’s San Diego Reader, detailing the histories of all the downtown theaters once run by Vince Miranda, at one time co-owner of California’s Pussycat Theatre chain. This is one of the theaters chronicled in the piece, which is built from a series of email interviews with Cinema Treasures contribs Dan Whitehead and Tim David (David is Miranda’s godson). Unfortunately, the online version doesn’t have any of the great photos and graphics seen in the printed version – I wrote the piece and will probably put scans of the graphics on my own webpage before much longer, after the next issue comes out. Here’s a link to the article on the Reader site:

View link

This is our second major feature on southern CA theaters in about a year (the other, “Field Of Screens,” is just on San Diego drive-ins and can be found on the Reader site with the search bar). If anyone here likes the article(s) and would like to encourage the publisher to greenlight more, feel free to leave your thoughts about the piece in the comment section after article. The paper really pays attention to reader comments!
http://www.sdreader.com/ed/cover/

bpgirl62
bpgirl62 on August 7, 2007 at 1:31 pm

If the theater was shuttered in the early 90s then it must have been showing movies in the car lot that’s been there since the 80s.

JayAllenSanford
JayAllenSanford on August 8, 2008 at 10:27 am

New book-length Pussycat Theatre history from the San Diego Reader:
View link

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 13, 2009 at 1:37 am

Here is part of an LA Times article dated 9/20/73:

BUENA PARK-The Pussycat Theater resumed showing sex films Wednesday night after vice officers made their 14th arrest and seizure of films there this year. The latest raid was launched Tuesday night during the showing of “Beyond the Commission’s Report on Obscenity and Pornography”.

Officers seized a print of the film, advertising posters and schedules of its showing. They also arrested the manager, Edward Lee Bailey, 28, of Los Angeles.

MagicLantern
MagicLantern on June 17, 2010 at 7:14 pm

Demolished; now a Ford dealership.

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