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Egyptian Theatre: Hollywood Blvd. views 1955 to present

6712 Hollywood Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90028 | map |

The Egyptian Theatre pages: an overview | Hollywood Blvd. views 1922-1954 | Hollywood Blvd. 1955-present | forecourt | lobby - earlier views | lobby - recent views | auditorium - earlier views | auditorium - recent views | booth | backstage | Egyptian 2 & 3 | along Las Palmas Ave. | along McCadden Place |


1955 - "You're in the Show with TODD-AO." Screwing in the last few light bulbs. The Egyptian was the first theatre in Los Angeles to be equipped for the process. It's a Ralph Morris photo in the Los Angeles Public Library collection.



1955 - The ladies are up admiring the neon installed on the Egyptian marquee for the roadshow presentation of "Oklahoma." The photo is in the Los Angeles Public Library collection.  It can also be seen on Martin Hart's great site American Widescreen Museum. See his TODD-AO section.


 
1955 - A wonderful view of the "Oklahoma" signage located by Bill Gabel. It was once on the Cinema Treasures page about the theatre.  
 
 

1955 - The Egyptian facade at night during the run of "Oklahoma." Thanks to Ken McIntyre for locating the photo for a post on the private Facebook group Photos of Los Angeles.



1955 - A delightful view looking west during the run of "Oklahoma" at the Egyptian. It's in the Los Angeles Public Library collection.



1957 - It's March and the Egyptian is running "Giant" with James Dean, Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson. The film was a November 1956 release. It got 15 Academy Award nominations but only won one, for director George Stevens. Over on the left the Vogue has "Anastasia" with Ingrid Bergman and Yul Brenner, a moveover from the Chinese.

It's a screenshot from Getty Images footage that's included in Rick Prelinger's "Lost Landscapes of Los Angeles - 2016," an hour and twenty minutes of wonderful images from various sources that was originally presented in a program at the Los Angeles Public Library. Also see "Lost Landscapes of Los Angeles - 2019." This second installment was presented at the Library by the organization Photo Friends as part of the series L.A. in Focus. Both compilations are on Vimeo.


 
1957 - A shot taken during the April premiere of "Spirit of St. Louis." It's a photo from Marc Wanamaker's Bison Archives. Thanks to April Clemmer for sharing it during a presentation about the theatre's history. Visit her April's Old Hollywood site for information on the events and walking tours she hosts. This one also appears in the AMPAS B'hend and Kaufmann Collection. Also see a view from a different angle taken that night that was located by Ken McIntyre.
 
 

1957 - A fine look at the curvy facade with the theatre running "Jeanne Eagels," an August release with Kim Novak. Thanks to Sean Ault for finding the photo.



1957 - A view of the Egyptian running "Pal Joey" with Frank Sinatra and Kim Novak. It was an October release. The photo appeared as a post by Ken McIntyre on the Photos of Los Angeles private Facebook group.


 
1957 - "Pal Joey" ballyhoo on the sidewalk: "He's in love with Rita and Kim and not with us!" It's a photo in the Los Angeles Public Library collection.
 

1959 - The west coast premiere of "The Diary of Anne Frank," a March release. It's a photo by Sid Avery in the Los Angeles Public Library collection. Also see another take
 
 
 
1959 - A wider view of the "Anne Frank" premiere. It's another Sid Avery photo in the Los Angeles Public Library collection. Also see another wide shot from a different angle
 


1959 - Yet another view of the "Anne Frank" opening. Thanks to Ken McIntyre for finding this one. 



1959 - A look east during the run of Hitchcock's "North by Northwest," a September release. Thanks to Sean Ault for sharing the photo from his collection.


 
1959 - The opening of "Pillow Talk," an October release. Thanks to Bill Gabel for posting this one on the private Facebook group Photos of Los Angeles. See a sharper but cropped version of the shot that's on display in the theatre lobby. It's a photo from Marc Wanamaker that's in the Tom B'hend and Preston Kaufmann Collection, part of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Margaret Herrick Library.
 

1959 - The November 29 west coast premiere of "Ben-Hur."  Thanks to Kurt Wahlner for spotting this shot from a bit of footage that's included in a two-minute long Red Line Tours promo appearing on YouTube. The film went on to a 98 week reserved seat 70mm run. It was photographed in MGM's Camera 65 process, a format later rebranded as Ultra Panavision. It used a 1.25 anamorphic for a 2.76 to 1 aspect ratio. 


1959 - A December 3 shot of the theatre hosting a benefit screening of "Ben-Hur" for the Burbank Symphony. Thanks to Eitan Alexander for this photo. It appeared on the cover of "Hollywood's Greatest Themes," Volume 10 of the Longines Symphonette Society's "Family Library of Beautiful Listening" from 1973. And thanks to Matt Spero for doing some color correction. Eitan posted this on the Vintage Los Angeles Facebook page and listed the signage visible from left to right: Union Pacific Railroad Co., The Orient Art Goods, Harry Dine Menswear, the Egyptian, Pig 'n Whistle (seems to be replaced here by another cafe sign), Citizen's National Bank, Hollywood Inn Hotel, Miller's Books & Stationery.



1959/60 - The signage for "Ben-Hur." This image taken by an unknown photographer was a contribution to this project from Eddy LA. Also see several shots from some color footage taken during this engagement that appears in the 2016 film "Rules Don't Apply."
 

1959/1960 - A view east taken during the run of "Ben-Hur." Thanks to Robert R for locating the photo for a post on Cinema Treasures.


1961 - The Egyptian running "King of Kings." Thanks to Ken McIntyre for the post for the private Facebook group Photos of Los Angeles. The theatre during this engagement also shows up in a short Hollywood Blvd. film clip from Getty Images.



1963 - Thanks to Richard Wojcik for sharing this view taken after Christmas following the opening of "The Cardinal." It was a post on the Facebook page Vintage Los Angeles.



1964 - The June premiere of "Unsinkable Molly Brown" with Debbie Reynolds. Thanks to Marc Wanamaker's Bison Archives for the photo. 
 

1964 - Debbie arriving for the show. This is from footage briefly appearing in "Temple of Film: 100 Years of the Egyptian Theatre," the eleven minute Netflix documentary by Angus Wall that was made to celebrate the theatre's 2023 reopening. This shot, as well as other premiere clips, can also be seen in "How Netflix saved iconic Grauman's Egyptian in Hollywood," a November 2023 segment from the Today Show. Thanks to Paul Rayton for spotting it on YouTube.

1964 - Thanks to Eric Lynxwiler for sharing this postcard view of the October 28 opening of "My Fair Lady" from his collection. It's on Flickr in the Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation photo pool. The film, in 70mm, played a 68 week reserved seat run, closing in February 1966. It's a photo by George E. Watson. The copy on the back of the card: 

"HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - Under an umbrella of probing searchlight beams, stars of today and yesterday arrive at the light-drenched theatre's entrance, to see and be seen, greet and be greeted . . . then join with others of the fortunate public in seeing the 'First Screening' (usually held for some worthy charity) of a dazzling, costly and resplendent super production which a major studio expects will produce many an Oscar . . . and it usually does!"
 

1964 - A "My Fair Lady" premiere view appearing in the Netflix short "Temple of Film: 100 Years of the Egyptian Theatre." It can also be seen in "How Netflix saved iconic Grauman's Egyptian in Hollywood," the November 2023 segment from the Today Show. Both are on YouTube.


1964 -  A shot of the marquee for "My Fair Lady" that appears on the site Epnet.com.



1965 - Thanks to Warren Beckerman for this photo he took looking in toward the entrance doors during the run of "My Fair Lady." Matt Spero gets a hand for working on the color.



1966 - A great view of the "World Famous" Egyptian set up for the premiere of "How to Steal a Million" from da90027 on Flickr. It's in his "Old Los Angeles & Nostalgia" collection which also contains many other wonders. The photo also appears on Vintage Los Angeles, credited to the Beverly Hills Public Library. There's also a re-post on VLA and yet another re-post.



1966 - Looking down on the Egyptian during the run of "Hawaii." The film opened October 13 for a 52 week run. Ken McIntyre located the shot for a post on the Photos of Los Angeles private Facebook group. The photo appears on the Water & Power Associates Museum page "Early L.A. Buildings (1900-1925) page 3." It's from the McAvoy/Bruce Torrence Historic Hollywood Photographs collection, their #HB-321.


 
1966 - We look a bit farther west in another "Hawaii" view posted by Ken McIntyre on the Photos of Los Angeles Facebook group. Down the street there's a glimpse of the Hollywood Theatre and the stagehouse of the El Capitan
 
 

1966 - A "Hawaii" view shared by John Davis on the Southern California Nostalgia private Facebook group. Thanks!
 

1968 - The Egyptian running the roadshow engagement of "Funny Girl" -- the first film after the D-150 auditorium remodeling. It's a photo from an unknown source that was located by April Clemmer. Visit her April's Old Hollywood site for information on the events and walking tours she hosts.

1969 - A "Funny Girl" shot in the Los Angeles Public Library collection. 

 
1971 - "Patton" at the Egyptian. Note the "Dimension 150" sign. It's a photo by Lee Mason appearing on the USC Digital Library website. It was a January demonstration against police brutality and entrapment of homosexuals. Bill Gabel comments: "'Patton' opened its roadshow engagement at Pacific’s Pantages Theatre and later moved over to Pacific‘s Beverly Theatre for a total of 23 weeks. This engagement of 'Patton' in its only D-150 presentation in Southern California started January 13, 1971."
 
 

1971 - "Pretty Maids All in a Row" with Rock Hudson and Angie Dickinson had its L.A. premiere February 26. Thanks to Richard Wojcik for sharing this postcard view west toward the Hollywood Theatre and Loew's (aka the Paramount, El Capitan) as a post on the private Facebook group Mid Century Modern.
 

1972 - "They Only Kill Their Masters," a November release with James Garner. It's a photo from the McAvoy/Bruce Torrence Historic Hollywood Photographs collection, their #HB-404. Check out the over 200 photos in the terrific Hollywood Boulevard gallery on their site.


 
1972 - The premiere of "The Poseidon Adventure." Thanks to Brian Boskind for posting it on Facebook. He notes: "On Dec 14, 1972 a Christmas float driven by Groucho Marx in a Santa costume, carried the Poseidon cast to the Egyptian where a big premier event was televised. Then the cast split into groups and were flown by helicopters to various other theaters in the city for late night screenings." Thanks, Brian!  The photo also appears on the Facebook page The Poseidon Adventure 1972.
 

1972 - Looking east during the run of "The Poseidon Adventure." It's a photo from the McAvoy/Bruce Torrence Historic Hollywood Photographs collection, their #HB-400.


1973 - Ed Ruscha, perhaps better known for "Twentysix Gasoline Stations" and "Every Building on the Sunset Strip," also had a fling with Hollywood Blvd. Here we get a look at the Egyptian in 1973 and 2002.  By this time it was the "Egyptian I-II-III" with the two little auditoria in an adjacent building east of the main theatre.

The video, "Ed Ruscha's Hollywood Blvd.," part of the Getty's "Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in L.A.," is a 5 minute look up one side of the street and then down the other. It can be seen on YouTube.



c.1973 - A look west at the Egyptian I-II-III running as a moveover house: "2 big Features" in the main auditorium. The photo appeared on the Vintage Los Angeles Facebook page as a post from Mark London. The Egyptian II and III were added in a store building facing on Las Palmas in a 1972 expansion. The main auditorium remained untouched.

In the photo beyond the Egyptian we see the Hollywood Theatre and the El Capitan, here in its Loew's days. It went back to being called the Paramount by mid-1974.


 
1975 - That great epic "Coonskin" playing at the Egyptian. Thanks to John Stewart for his photo, one of fourteen appearing in his Los Angeles Theaters set on Flickr. John is the long-time projectionist at the Austin Paramount. Thanks also to Mike Hume for advising of John's collection. 



c.1975 - A great view looking west from the Richard Wojcik collection on the Vintage Los Angeles Facebook page.



1977 - This "Airport '77" shot of the Egyptian was once posted by Alison Martino on the page for the private Facebook group Mid Century Modern Los Angeles but Facebook seems to have mislaid it. Thanks, Alison! 



1978 - Scott Santoro's photo gives us a look at the Egyptian during the run of a 70mm revival of "The Sound of Music" in the summer of 1978. Thanks, Scott!  And thanks as well to Matt Spero for doing some cleanup on the image.


 
1979 - The May 25 opening of "Alien." The photo by Phil Johnson is one that appears with an article by John Squires about the film's engagement on the site BloodyDisgusting.com. Thanks to Jerrod Cardwell for sharing the photo on the Photos of Los Angeles private Facebook group. And thanks to Matt Spero for working on the image. 
 

1979 - Another "Alien" opening night photo taken by Phil Johnson. Ken McIntyre shared it on the Photos of Los Angeles Facebook group.

1979 - A look at a gathering waiting to see "Alien." It was added to the Vintage Los Angeles Facebook page by contributor Laurel Canyon Rider.



1979 - An "Alien" drive-by. Thanks to Ken McIntyre for locating this one for a post on the private Photos of Los Angeles Facebook group.



1980 - Thanks to the now-vanished American Classic Images website for this view of the theatre running "The Changeling," a March release.



1980 - A summer photo of the theatre from Antoine Guilbaud that he shared on the Photos of Los Angeles Facebook group taken when the theatre was running "The Empire Strikes Back." He's also got it on Vintage Los Angeles.



1980 - Another "Empire Strikes Back" view. Thanks to Bill Gabel for finding this one for a post on the Photos of Los Angeles Facebook group. 



1982 - "Author! Author!" with Al Pacino, Dyan Cannon and Tuesday Weld was a June release. In one (or both) of the small houses they had "Summer Lovers," a July release with Darryl Hannah and Peter Gallagher. Thanks to Marc Seavey for sharing his photo on a Photos of Los Angeles Facebook post that also included two other Hollywood views. 



1982 - Thanks to American Classic Images for this December photo taken early during the run of "The Verdict."



1983 - A fine night view in January from American Classic Images.



1983 - "Return of The Jedi" is playing in this view on Cinema Treasures. It was added to their collection by John Rice. Thanks, John!


 
1989 - A Michael Haering photo from the Herald Examiner collection at the Los Angeles Public Library. "The Fly II" was in the big house. 
 

1991 - "Point Break" playing in 1991. United Artists Theatre circuit closed the theatre in 1992. Thanks to Richard DuVal for sharing his photo as a post on the private Facebook group Photos of Los Angeles. He later posted it on the Cinema Treasures public Facebook group

 
 
1990s - Thanks to Bill Gabel for this shot of the abandoned theatre that he posted on Cinema Treasures. American Cinematheque got it in 1996.  
 
 

2002 - A Betty Sword photo of the entrance of the Egyptian from the Cezar Del Valle Theatre Talks collection. Thanks, Cezar!  The theatre reopened in 1998 after the renovations by the American Cinematheque.


 
2007 - Looking into the restored forecourt. Photo: Bill Counter 

2008 - A fine view of the neon taken by Marc Evans in July. Thanks, Marc!

2010 - Another view of the vertical at night. Photo: Bill Counter

 
2012 - Ken McIntyre's look at the vertical sign. It's a post on the Facebook page Photos of Los Angeles. Also see a photo of the Pig 'n Whistle signage next door.
 

2021 - A look into the forecourt. No more palm trees. On the right the former Pig 'n Whistle had been gutted and was being refitted as a Mexican chain restaurant. At the time of the photo work had stopped due to lack of permits. Photo: Bill Counter - November 15
 
 
 
2022 - The vertical installed during the 1997-98 renovations was still up but only a few tentacles remained from the "American Cinematheque" signage that spanned the entrance. Thanks to April Brooks Clemmer for sharing her photo on a March 7 post on the April's Old Hollywood Facebook page. Visit the April's Old Hollywood website for news of her walking tours and other events.  
 
 

2022 - The torched-off remains of the support for the "Cinematheque" signage. Photo: Bill Counter - March 10
 
 

2022 - The wall on the west side of the entrance. Photo: Bill Counter - March 10
 
 

2022 - The theatre's 100th birthday was October 18 but it didn't exactly celebrate in high style. Visitors coming by for birthday cupcakes at the gate included Tiffany Nitsche, president of the Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation and Scott Collette, curator of the Forgotten Los Angeles Facebook page. 
 
 

2022 - The top of the vertical the day before it came down for a rehab. Photo: Bill Counter - December 21
 
 

2022 - The sign on the ground by sunrise. The sign contractor is YESCO - Young Electric Sign Co. Photo: Bill Counter - December 22
 
 

2022 - Finishing the frame to protect the sign during transport. Photo: Bill Counter - December 22
 
 

2022 - The tubing for the winged design at the bottom. Photo: Bill Counter - December 22
 
 

2022 - Loading it onto the truck. Photo: Bill Counter - December 22
 
 

2022 - Almost ready for the takeaway to the shop. It still needed to be strapped down. Photo: Bill Counter - December 22 
 
 

2023 - The sign back on the building in late August after the rehab by YESCO. Note the new Netflix red background instead of the previous blue. Thanks to Conor Holt for sharing this photo he took. 
 
 

2023 - A closer look at the bas-relief on the wall. Photo: Bill Counter - September 5
 
 

2023 - The west wall after a patch and repaint. Photo: Bill Counter - September 5
 
 

2023 - Lots of posters on the construction fence but none at this point advertising anything coming to the Egyptian. Photo: Bill Counter - September 5
 
 

2023 - This little sign with a red "N" went up. And then quickly got covered. Thanks to Stak for the September 15 photo. Also see a shot of the cute plywood box they built around it several days later. 
 
 

2023 - The construction fence removed, another step closer to the reopening. Photo: Bill Counter - October 14 
 
 

2023 - A look along the new gates. Photo: Bill Counter - October 14
 
 

2023 - The new facade on the east storefront. This wing of what originally were retail shops is intended as an event center. Photo: Bill Counter - October 14 
 
 

2023 - The rehabbed vertical. YESCO did the work on the sign. The photo from Netflix appeared with Erik Pederson's October 18 article "Netflix Sets Egyptian Theatre Reopening For November..." on Deadline. 
 
 

2023 - Thanks to Steven Smith for sharing this sign detail. He included it in a Facebook post of seventeen shots taken at a November 7 American Cinematheque grand opening party. The border down the sign's edges alternates between blue and green.
 


2023 - Opening night. There had been several invitational events but the first public showings were of David Fincher's Netflix film "The Killer" on November 9. Yes, they were keeping the gates closed and only letting people in through a door at the left. Photo: Bill Counter 
 
 

2023 - The east storefront. Photo: Bill Counter - November 22

The Egyptian Theatre pages: an overview | Hollywood Blvd. views 1922-1954 | back to top: Hollywood Blvd. 1955-present | forecourt | lobby - earlier views | lobby - recent views | auditorium - earlier views | auditorium - recent views | booth | backstage | Egyptian 2 & 3 | along Las Palmas Ave. | along McCadden Place

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5 comments:

  1. Why was the vertical sign restored with a red background, instead of the original Egyptian deep blue? And why were the palm trees removed from the forecourt? Will they ever be replaced?

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    Replies
    1. Well, red is Netflix' favorite color. And it's not like it's a historic sign -- it only dates from the 1990s American Cinematheque renovation. While it was intended to be a replica of a sign installed in the early 1930s, the colors chosen (including the blue background) probably were quite arbitrary. In one color shot from 1948 the base color appears to be red. As for the palm trees, they'll be missed. Netflix wanted to go back to a more original look for the forecourt and the trees were a Cinematheque addition that they didn't like.

      Delete
  2. What happened to the original; massive curved sign that was over the entrance? It looks like it was taken down during the last renovation

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, it was more than a sign -- it was a massive curved wall of steel and stucco. I'm sure that both the tower portion and the marquee itself just went to the dump in the 1990s renovation by American Cinematheque.

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  3. Look at the 1959/60 "ben Hur" photo. You can see evenly spaced columns. My mother who is 91 and a interior designer, has claimed for decades that in her youth there was a zoo in the court and she drew me a floorplan scetch. The Cinamateque remodel placed palm trees where those columns were and marked the foot print of the long gone zoo.

    ReplyDelete