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Grauman's Egyptian

Sid Grauman's first Hollywood theatre, the Egyptian, opened in 1922. This delightful early postcard view of the theatre is from Brian Michael McCray's Hollywood Postcards collection, a set that was on Picasa before Google pulled the plug on that platform.

Note the style of the building on the corner -- it predated the theatre and hasn't yet had its Egyptian makeover. The card also features in John Bengtson's article "Keaton's Short Fuse," analyzing locations in Hollywood for Buster Keaton's "Cops" (1922).  It also appears in the California State Library collection, on and in the collection WorthPoint.

Head to our Egyptian street view timeline page for over a hundred facade photos of the theatre arranged chronologically.

When the Chinese came along in 1927 there were instantly many facade postcard views. But here at the Egyptian, all the fascination seemed to be with its unique forecourt. Thanks to Brian Michael McCray for this view in from the street. It's 1923 and that the billboard at right is advertising "The Covered Wagon."  There's also a version with slightly different coloring in the Cezar Del Valle collection.

This early view looking a bit deeper into the forecourt also gave us a photo of Sid himself. Note the Bedouin patrolling the rooftop. This printing from the California State Library collection was published in 1930, long after Sid had relinquished any involvement in the theatre.

Another card that started from the same photo as the one above is this version in the collection of the New York Public Library.  We don't see Sid this time around but get different coloring, a look at the roofline on the shops at the left and a better view in to the entrance doors.

This classic view of the Egyptian forecourt's east wall near the theatre entrance comes from Elizabeth Fuller's fine Old Los Angeles Postcards collection on Flickr. Thanks, Elizabeth!

A favorite view that shows up in at least half a dozen collections is this look at the theatre's usherettes arrayed in front of the mural on the west wall of the forecourt. Thanks to Brian Michael McCray for the version of the card seen here.

Another west wall look from closer to the street with some tenting deployed is this one that popped up on eBay. It can also be seen in the California State Library collection.

For more views of the forecourt, head to our Egyptian forecourt page.

A rare proscenium postcard of the Egyptian from Brian Michael McCray's Hollywood Postcards collection. Thanks again, Brian! See our Egyptian auditorium page for other views of the space.

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