Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Grauman’s Egyptian Theatre, 6712 Hollywood Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90028

On October 20th, 2012, Hollywood’s first movie palace, Grauman’s Egyptian Theatre , celebrates its 90th Anniversary.

From their website:

“Please join the American Cinematheque in honoring the legacy of the Egyptian Theatre, the home of the first Hollywood movie première.

Join us for an evening of 1922 style entertainment featuring silent short films (including some Egyptian theme novelty films), vaudeville acts, dancing to premiere vintage orchestra Dean Mora’s Modern Rhythmnists, make your own Hollywood Screen Test, 1920s libations, a buffet fit for King Tut, gaming in our speakeasy gambling den, docent-led tours of the Egyptian’s private spaces.”

"Unique in its policy", Grauman's Egyptian Theatre opened October 18, 1922 with Douglas Fairbanks starring as Robin Hood.

Holly Leaves, October 13, 1922:
" Grauman's Hollywood will be the first photoplay theater in the West to maintain a policy of reserving every seat for every performance. For the convenience of Los Angeles patrons a downtown box office will be maintained at Barker Brothers', and seats will be on sale two weeks in advance.

"Two complete shows will be given daily, a matinee at 2:15 and an evening performance at 8:15. The scale of prices for the matinee will run from 50 cents to $1.00 and the evening prices from 75 cents to $1.50.

"Every production will be presented with an elaborate musical accompaniment by an orchestra which is now being organized and which it is hoped to make one of the representative musical organizations of the West.
"It is Grauman's intention to show the biggest feature attractions of all producers at the Hollywood Theater, the opening feature being Douglas Fairbanks in 'Robin Hood,' which has been [?] as the really big photoplay triumph of 1922.

"Each production will be preceded with a prologue in keeping with the atmosphere of the story in which players who starred in the picture will be seen in their identical roles.

"' Robin Hood" is to have the most elaborate prologue accorded [?].  The Nottingham Castle set, which drew thousands to the Fairbanks-Pickford studio is to be duplicated on the Grauman stage, and the $150,000 costumes worn in the play will be used in the prologue, which Sid Grauman has designated as the 'Nottingham Castle Pageant.' More than 200 persons are to take part in the Robin Hood pageant, which will precede every showing of the picture."

Above postcard from the Theatre Talks collection.

Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, chosen 2010 Best Book of the Year by the Theatre Historical Society.

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