Thursday, January 10, 2019

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"Phantom Lady"


We get this shot of the Pantages, 6233 Hollywood Blvd., disguised as the Casino Theatre in Robert Siodmak's "Phantom Lady" (Universal, 1944). Alan Curtis is going to a show in New York with a lady he just met in a bar. It's a studio set when we go inside.

The problem is that Curtis' wife is murdered that evening and he doesn't know the identity of the lady that might provide his alibi. Elisha Cook, Jr., the drummer at the show, knows something. After Curtis is convicted Ella Raines, his former secretary, tries to clear him.

See the pages about the Pantages Theatre on the Los Angeles Theatres website for hundreds of photos of the building.

On IMDb:"Phantom Lady"

"48 Hrs."


We see lots of downtown Los Angeles while Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy are supposedly driving around San Francisco in Walter Hill's film "48 Hrs." (Paramount, 1982). In this shot we get views of the Rialto Theatre, 812 S. Broadway, and the Orpheum 842 S. Broadway.

See the pages on the Los Angeles Theatres site about the Rialto Theatre and the Orpheum Theatre for histories of those two venues along with many photos. The Rialto's marquee got restored but it's now an Urban Outfitters. The Orpheum is still going strong as a concert venue.

On IMDb: "48 Hrs."

Saturday, January 5, 2019

"Day of Reckoning"


The RKO Hillstreet Theatre at 8th & Hill is in the background behind actor Conway Tearle as we look up Hill St. in "Day of Reckoning" (MGM, 1933). We're on top of the Western Costume Building, 939 S. Broadway. In this prison drama Richard Dix is sent to a high-rise prison facility in L.A. after a bit of embezzlement.

Thanks to John Bengtson for the screenshot. It's included in his Silent Locations post "Laurel & Hardy's Liberty Rooftop" where he discusses shots from the same location used for the Laurel & Hardy film "Liberty" (1929) as well as other locations used for that film.

See the page about the RKO Hillstreet on the Los Angeles Theatres site for many photos of this 1922 vintage house designed by G. Albert Lansburgh for the Orpheum Circuit. It was demolished in 1965.



Another shot from the same scene where we're looking west  with the Trinity Auditorium, 855 S. Grand Ave., in the background. Over on the right it's the Commercial Exchange Building at 8th and Broadway. Again thanks to John Bengtson for the screenshot. See the page about the Trinity Auditorium for more about the 1914 vintage building. 

In IMDb: "Day of Reckoning"

Sunday, December 30, 2018

"Hollywood: City of Celluloid"


We almost get a streetcar view of the marquee and vertical of the Hollywood Theatre, 6764 Hollywood Blvd., in the documentary short "Hollywood: City of Celluloid" (1932). It's hiding behind a Christmas tree. The film was produced and photographed by Sten Nordensklold.

For more on the theatre head to the page about the Hollywood Theatre on the Los Angeles Theatres website.



A view west on Hollywood Blvd. with a banner across the street advertising Joe E. Brown in "Local Boy Makes Good," a November 1931 release playing at the Warner, 6433 Hollywood Blvd.



A 1931 look east toward the entrance of the Warner from the film. See the many pages about the Warner Hollywood on the Los Angeles Theatres site for hundreds of photos of various areas of the building.

The film also gives an interesting tour of Beverly Hills and visits to several studios. It's included as an extra on the DVD of the 1995 Morgan Neville / Harry Pallenberg film "Shotgun Freeway: Drives Through Lost L.A."


On IMDb: "Hollywood: City of Celluloid" "Shotgun Freeway"

"The Savage Eye"


We get a peek at the wildly flashing marquee of the Globe Theatre, 744 S. Broadway, in this shot from "The Savage Eye" (Trans-Lux, 1960). The film, written and directed by Ben Maddow and Sidney Myers, follows a young divorcee played by Barbara Baxley on a noirish pseudo-documentary style tour of the underbelly of Los Angeles. Gary Merrill narrates as "the Poet."

The Globe Theatre pages on the Los Angeles Theatres site will give you a detailed tour through all the areas of this 1913 vintage legit house. It opened as the Morosco.

On IMDb: "The Savage Eye"

Thursday, December 27, 2018

"Shockproof"


We get a peek at the stagehouse of the Mason Theatre on the right beyond the old City Jail on 1st St. in this promotional still for Douglas Sirk's "Shockproof" (Columbia, 1949) with Cornel Wilde. The Mason's entrance was at 127 S. Broadway. But it was a long building -- the auditorium and stage were almost over on Hill St. That's the L.A. Times building on the left of the photo.

The photo appears in several collections. Thanks to Noirish Los Angeles contributor Nathan Marsak (aka Beaudry) for featuring it along with two images of the jail building in his Noirish post #7413.

See the Mason Theatre page on the Los Angeles Theatres site for many photos. The theatre was demolished in 1956.

On IMDb: "Shockproof"

"The Saturday Night Kid"

This story about the filming of "The Saturday Night Kid" (Paramount, 1929) appeared in the Pacific Electric company magazine in September 1929. Thanks to L.A. transit historian Sean Ault for finding the article. Note the Belasco Theatre, 1050 S. Hill St. in the photo.


See the pages on the Los Angeles Theatres site about the Belasco Theatre for a history of this 1926 legit house as well as many photos. 

The scene shot on the streetcar is 9:25 into the film but there's nothing of the Belasco to be seen. The entire film is on YouTube with the title changed to "Love 'em and Leave 'em"

On IMDb: "The Saturday Night Kid"

Sunday, November 25, 2018

"The Black Dahlia"


We get a fine view of the Pantages Theatre, 6233 Hollywood Blvd., in Brian De Palma's "The Black Dahlia" (Universal, 2006). Josh Hartnett isn't going to a movie. But he does pay a visit to the Frolic Room next door. In the film it's a lesbian bar and he's looking for anyone who has seen Elizabeth Short.

The film also stars Scarlett Johansson, Aaron Eckhart, Hilary Swank and Mia Kershner.  On the Pantages marquee De Palma has "Black Angel," a 1946 film about the murder of a singer starring Dan Duryea, June Vincent and Peter Lorre.

See the pages about the Pantages Theatre on the Los Angeles Theatres website for hundreds of photos of the building.

On IMDb: "The Black Dahlia"

"American Pie 2"

The Pasadena Playhouse is briefly seen in the J.B. Rogers film "American Pie 2" (Universal, 2001). The cast includes Jason Biggs, Sean William Scott, Shannon Elizabeth, Mena Suvari, Chris Klein, Natasha Lyonne and Eugene Levy.

Mike Hume has the report: "Here’s all that we see of the Pasadena Playhouse: a fleeting glimpse of the courtyard! Heather (Mena Suvari), supposedly in Spain, receives a phone call from her boyfriend Oz (Chris Klein). She answers the call on a balcony above a plaza and then goes indoors, seemingly to her apartment, to take the rest of the call. Blink and you miss it!"



Thanks to Mike for the research and the screenshot. We also get a quick shot of the Pasadena City Hall for another image of the architecture in Spain. 

For a great tour of the Playhouse, a theatre that opened in 1925, visit Mike's Pasadena Playhouse page on his Historic Theatre Photography website.

Also see the page about the Pasadena Playhouse on the Los Angeles Theatres site for information and photos.

On IMDb: "American Pie 2"

Thursday, November 15, 2018

"Foxcatcher"


Bennett Miller's "Foxcatcher" (Annapurna Pictures, 2014) did some filming inside the Roxie Theatre, 518 S. Broadway, but there's not really anything Roxie-ish that shows up in the finished movie. Thanks to Elizabeth Brennan for this main floor view taken during the shoot. It was a post on Twitter. The film stars Steve Carell and Channing Tatum in the strange story of John du Pont's wrestling team.



A look toward the Roxie stage during the filming of "Foxcatcher." Thanks to Elizabeth Brennan for the photo on Twitter. Thanks also to Hunter Kerhart for spotting these two views. 

See the pages about the Roxie Theatre on the Los Angeles Theatres site for the history of the building along with many photos both vintage and recent.

On IMDb: "Foxcatcher"

Sunday, October 14, 2018

"He Learned About Women"

We see lots of the Philharmonic Auditorium at 5th & Olive in Lloyd Corrigan's film "He Learned About Women" (Paramount, 1933). Stu Erwin stars as Peter Potter Kendall II, a bookish young man in New York City who inherits a large fortune and needs to figure out how the world works.

On one of his trips out of the house he meets Susan Fleming and Alison Skipworth, playing a couple of desperate ladies in need of a job. He decides to employ them and soon Skipworth thinks she can get more. One of her conniving friends owns a theatre in need of a cash infusion so we spend lots of time in the Auditorium. The scenes include many backstage views.

See the page about the Philharmonic Auditorium on the Los Angeles Theatres site for a history of the building and many photos. The 2,670 seat theatre opened in 1906 and was demolished in 1985.

On IMDb: "He Learned About Women"

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

"The 25th Man"


We see the RKO Hillstreet Theatre at 8th & Hill in "The 25th Man," a 28 minute Los Angeles Police Department video from 1962. It's on the USC Digital Library website, minus its sound. The theatre is playing "Cinderfella" with Jerry Lewis and Ed Wynn, a December 1960 release. Thanks to Noirish Los Angeles contributor Ethereal Reality for spotting finding the video for inclusion in his Noirish post #43128.

See the page about the RKO Hillstreet on the Los Angeles Theatres site for many photos of this 1922 vintage house designed by G. Albert Lansburgh for the Orpheum Circuit. It was demolished in 1965.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

"A Star is Born"

Perhaps in homage to the 1954 version of the film, we visit the Shrine Auditorium, 665 W. Jefferson Ave., twice during Bradley Cooper's "A Star is Born" (Warner Bros, 2018). We're there first for the Grammy Awards where Jackson Maine (Cooper) was supposed to sing a Roy Orbison tribute but he gets demoted to just playing guitar. Rising star Ally (Lady Gaga) gets the award for best new performer and Maine, in the best James Mason fashion, is drunk and wanders onstage to embarrass everybody.

We're back at the Shrine at the end of the film for Ally's tribute to her dead husband. Instead of walking into the ocean, this time he hangs himself in the garage. In an echo of Judy Garland's line, Lady Gaga says "This is Ally Maine" when she comes onstage for the tribute before singing a song he wrote for her.

We visit many other venues in the film, mostly outside, including Coachella and UK's Glastonbury Festival. Also featured in the cast are Sam Elliott as his brother/manager, Andrew Dice Clay as Ally's buddy Lorenzo and Ravi Gafron as Ally's agent Rez Gafron.  The film's U.S. premiere was held at the Shrine on September 24, 2018.

See the main page about the Shrine Auditorium on the Los Angeles Theatres site for a list of many other films where the building appears.

On IMDb: "A Star is Born"

Friday, October 5, 2018

"Foxes"


Jodie Foster and her teenage friends live in the Valley, yet somehow they end up walking by the Ivar Theatre in Hollywood on their way to school in Adrian Lyne's "Foxes" (United Artists, 1980). The film about drugs, sex and growing up in L.A. also features Cherie Currie, Marilyn Kagan, Kandice Stroh, Scott Baio, Sally Kellerman, Randy Quaid and Lois Smith.

See the Los Angeles Theatres page about the Ivar Theatre for more about the building. It's a small legit house, now used by the L.A. Film School,  that opened in 1951. 

The girls say they're going to a concert at the Shrine Auditorium. We get lots of shots in a parking lot, a lobby area, and of a group performing onstage. But none of it is identifiable as the Shrine. It could have been shot anywhere. See the main page about the Shrine Auditorium on the Los Angeles Theatres site for a list of many films where the building actually appears.



One of the young ladies goes missing later in the film and we go to Hollywood looking for her. In this shot looking west we get a view in the distance of the madly flashing vertical of the Pix Theatre, 6126 Hollywood Blvd. It had opened as a legit house called the Music Box in 1926 and is now a music venue called the Fonda Theatre. See the Music Box page for many photos.

That red X hiding behind the palm trees on the far right is the sign for the X Theatre at 5959 Hollywood Blvd. See the Los Angeles Theatres page on the X Theatre for a bit of history and a few photos.   We only get a sliver of it here but just beyond the X is the vertical for the World Theatre, 6025 Hollywood Blvd.

On IMDb: "Foxes"

Thursday, October 4, 2018

"Cinema Twain"

According to IMDb the 2016 film "Cinema Twain" with Val Kilmer was filmed at the Pasadena Playhouse. It's based on his one-man play "Citizen Twain."

See the page about the Pasadena Playhouse on the Los Angeles Theatres site for lots of data and over a hundred photos of the theatre.

On IMDb: "Cinema Twain"

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

"Iron Man"


Disney Hall, 111 S. Grand Ave., makes an appearance in Jon Favreau's "Iron Man" starring Robert Downey, Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Terrence Howard and Jeff Bridges (Paramount, 2008). Here Downey is showing up unexpectedly at an annual Stark Industries benefit event.



A pre-show reception in the BP Hall, off the main lobby.  



Downey and Paltrow outside on the Aerial Pathway.

See the page on Disney Hall on the Los Angeles Theatres site for data on the building and many photos.

On IMBd: "Iron Man"

"Get Smart"


Early in Peter Segal's film "Get Smart" (Warner Bros., 2008) Anne Hathaway runs into Steve Carrell across the street from the Warner Grand Theatre, 478 W. 6th St. in San Pedro. She's jogging and knocks him over. The film also features Dwayne Johnson, Alan Arkin, James Caan and Terrence Stamp. 

See the pages about the Warner Grand on the Los Angeles Theatres site for a history of the theatre along with many photos. 



Disney Hall, 111 S. Grand Ave., makes an appearance later in the film. The president (James Caan) is going to go to a concert.



Terrence Stamp from CHAOS arrives. He's going to plant a bomb.



Another fine aerial view.  That's a bit of the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion on the right.



Ready for the concert. 



 Agents Alan Arkin, Anne Hathaway, Steve Carrell and Dwayne Johnson before the concert. Johnson, it turns out, is one of the bad guys. But the plot is foiled.

See the page on Disney Hall on the Los Angeles Theatres site for data on the building and many photos.

On IMBd: "Get Smart"

Sunday, September 30, 2018

"Cleopatra Jones"


The Town Theatre, 444 S. Hill St., is seen in its Pussycat days in the film "Cleopatra Jones" (Warner Bros., 1973). Jack Starrett directed the film, starring Tamara Dobson, Bernie Casey and Brenda Sykes. Oh, and let's not forget Shelley Winters in a bright red wig.



A moment later the guy under surveillance is inside getting some popcorn. 

Thanks to Jay Allen Sanford for spotting the Town in the film. See his 2010 San Diego Reader article: "Pussycat Theatres: A Comprehensive History of a California Dynasty." The version currently online via SDR is missing its photos. A better bet is on Blogspot: Pussycat Theater History 1 and Pussycat Theater History 2.

See the Town Theatre page on the Los Angeles Theatres site for a history of the theatre along with a dozen more photos. The building has been demolished.

On IMDb: "Cleopatra Jones"

Monday, September 24, 2018

"Oh, God!"


John Denver goes to a revival meeting at the Shrine Auditorium, 665 W. Jefferson Blvd., in Carl Reiner's film "Oh, God!" (Warner Bros., 1977). Paul Sorvino is the greedy reverend that God (George Burns) has sent Denver to chastise. It doesn't go well. Terri Garr plays Denver's wife, desperately trying to understand her husband's craziness.



Paul Sorvino onstage as the preacher. 



Some of the faithful up in the balcony.

Head to the Shrine Auditorium pages on the Los Angeles Theatres site for more about the theatre including many vintage photos. It's a 1926 design by G. Albert Lansburgh situated near USC.

On IMDb: "Oh, God!"