Cinefamily at The Silent Movie Theatre

611 N. Fairfax Avenue,
Los Angeles, CA 90036

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Silent Movie Theatre - Los Angeles, CA

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This silent movie shrine was built in 1942, when silents seemed like ancient relics to the masses.

Though it has gone through hard times over the years, including having to close its doors for a few years (due to the infamous murder of the owner in 1996), it has never ceased to pay homage to the films that built the entertainment capital of the world.

With the switch to a new owner, it was completely renovated, and now beautifully captures the look of old time movie theaters. In 2006 it was sold to new owners who continue to show silent movies with live music once a week. The theatre now also shows a variety of other movies and hosts many events including private parties.

Contributed by Carrick Bartle

Recent comments (view all 45 comments)

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on August 24, 2009 at 3:27 pm

There was an article in the Sunday LA Times about repertory cinema in LA. The name of theater is now Cinefamily. The website is www.cinefamily.org

DonSolosan
DonSolosan on August 24, 2009 at 5:26 pm

Ken, that page says “CineFamily at the Silent Theatre.” So it seems like a marketing thing and the name hasn’t really changed.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on August 24, 2009 at 7:16 pm

OK, I guess the name stays the same. Easier to find it under Silent Theater anyway.

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on February 19, 2010 at 12:43 pm

Intersting concept.

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on July 14, 2010 at 8:13 pm

Thanks Chuck1231.

CSWalczak
CSWalczak on December 9, 2012 at 5:38 am

The theater is also hosting a “Telethon” to help upgrade and preserve the theater on December 15, 2012: View article

Kris
Kris on December 28, 2012 at 2:10 pm

These guys are running a Kickstarter that ends January 2.

dtrigubetz
dtrigubetz on January 15, 2013 at 1:16 am

Yeah, they had a $144,000 goal and raised $158,000

ejones880
ejones880 on July 14, 2013 at 10:13 pm

This was my favorite place in LA (when I lived their)and I went almost weekly from 1991 until 2006. I knew the second owner Laurence Austin vaguely. He was murdered in 1997. I wasn’t at the theater the night he was murdered; however I did see the murderer in the last row on the right side last row on an earlier night (They were showing either Buster Keaton or Laurel and Hardy)and he did attempt to shoot the front box office and I remember I heard glass breaking (No one was hit so I never thought anything of it). I also enjoyed Charlie Lustman’s time as the owner and miss his song “Take me to the Silent Picture show”. I would usually win a prize for guessing all the pictures on the wall. If anyone is writing a story about the Silent Movie Theater they can email me at

DavidSimpson
DavidSimpson on July 5, 2014 at 10:24 am

This really is an amazing survivor! I visited on 4th July 2014 to see the reissue of The Beatles' “A Hard Day’s Night”. A large, very appreciative audience thoroughly enjoyed the film, breaking out into spontaneous applause at the end. The cinema is what I describe as ‘endearingly ramshackle’, with four rows of two-seater sofas at the front and rows of truly ancient (possibly even 1942 original!) seats behind – and free-standing plastic seats at the end of every other row, to bump up the capacity! There’s also only one toilet closet for each sex, meaning queues before the feature comes on! There had been a live music event in the afternoon, and movies are just one aspect of the entertainment on offer. But there is a super, really imaginative line-up: long may this wonderful gem survive!

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