Well, the talk has been going on for months. But you'd walk by the place and the same low budget retail was still going on in what had been the lobby of the Rialto as had been happening there for years. But no, the deal hadn't been aborted. Urban Outfitters did get a long term lease on the Rialto Theatre at 812 S. Broadway.
The Marquee, the longest on Broadway, is a landmarked item and will get restored. In a recent Facebook post Hillsman Wright of the Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation noted that months ago one of the Outfitter's contractors had been furnished vintage photos of the sign for study. The classic view here is a c.1931 shot from the USC Archives.
Richard Guzman, in a May 2 story for Los Angeles Downtown News noted that the Philadelphia based chain has 215 U.S. stores and opened 15 new ones last year. And this won't be the first theatre project for the company. Councilman Jose Huizar's press release on the the priject mentions that the chain did a great job of adaptive reuse of the Garden Theatre in Charleston.
A Curbed L.A. story by Neal Broverman mentions that they intend to have a projection screen. No note as to whether any of the existing proscenium will be retained. Neal says look for an opening by the end of the year. Brigham Yen also ran a story on the Project.
See our web page on the 1917 Rialto Theatre for many photos inside and out. There's not much left of historic interest left inside.
Update 5pm May 3: Curbed L.A. put together another story with more of the history of the Rialto and some vintage as well as recent photos.