Los Angeles is blessed with many iconic landmarks that instantly brand them as part of Hollywood’s heritage. The 89 year old Hollywood Sign is by far the most recognizable landmark which has become the symbol of all that is Hollywood (hence, the reason it’s at the top of our blog). Then there are the Movie Studio lots themselves, which are living landmarks of our Industry. Along side these Studios stand the remaining operating movie theatres that flourished during the Golden Age of film exhibition in Los Angeles.
Like many cities in America, most of the opulent Movie Palaces are gone in Los Angeles…a sign of changing times and changing movie theatre business models…replaced by mega and multi-plexes with up to 30 screens in a single theatre.
The world famous Grauman’s Chinese Theatre (built in 1927) is the most recognizable and iconic of Hollywood’s grand Movie Palaces still operating in Los Angeles. And in the UCLA college suburb of Westwood Village stand 2 historic movie theatre landmarks also still operating…Regency Theatres’ Village (built in 1931) and Bruin (built in 1937) Theatres.
Of these 3 movie theatre landmarks, it is the 81 year old Village Theatre that has been the home of a Hollywood Tradition that is still going on today…giant eye-catching displays on the iconic theatre’s 170 foot tower.
Used mostly by Warner Bros. marketing genius Marty Weiser for decades to call attention to his Studio’s movies, the tower has been used by myself and other Studios as well for giant cut-outs and banners…thereby establishing a Hollywood Tradition of Showmanship that continues today with the recent installations of gigantic 40 foot high by 32 foot wide mega-banners for Paramount’s 3D re-release of TITANIC and Warner Bros.’ DARK SHADOWS (see previous blog postings).
In celebration of this Hollywood Tradition, below are examples of the giant displays that have graced the Village Theatre tower over the years…
Batman (1989) The Bat Signal projected onto the tower…Simple but effective.
Lethal Weapon 3 (1992)
The Fugitive (1993)
Deep Blue Sea (1999)
Space Cowboys (2000)
Space Cowboys (2000) Premiere with James Garner, Tommy Lee Jones, Clint Eastwood & Donald Sutherland standing under their 40 foot likenesses on the Village Theatre tower.
Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)