TCL Chinese Theatre

6925 Hollywood Boulevard,
Los Angeles, CA 90028

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isthisgood on September 21, 2023 at 5:24 am

Exactly Escott. My point wasn’t that more people had watched Oppenheimer than any other movie at The Chinese before, obviously, inflation plays a part in that. The point was that over a decade ago, there was a real concern about whether the theater could even stay afloat amid competition from the Arclight and terrible bookings. There was a real and justified concern that The Grauman’s Chinese Theater, the most famous theater in the world, could become a nightclub or live events venue. The IMAX conversion, which opened a decade ago yesterday, ended up being just what the theater needed to finally consistently book good shows and attract audience attraction. Star Wars probably sold more tickets, fine, but it’s still great that in the year of our Lord 2023, a digital era where IP drives the market and the industry is recovering from a global pandemic, The Chinese is still able to sell out a beautiful 70mm print of a new prestige drama from the most high profile director in the world right now. They sold out a special engagement for RRR almost a year ago. The cinema is getting the newest and hottest studio releases consistently and gets good business from them. The Chinese is a far cry from the state it was in 11 years ago, and I think that’s worth celebrating.

Escott O. Norton
Escott O. Norton on September 20, 2023 at 2:04 pm

For me what is wonderful is that the historic Chinese Theatre has been selling out a science movie for months. It was a brilliant presentation, I was there for the projector load in and watched it twice with a full house. Yes, they have had 24 hour screenings of other movies, but they were all franchise sequels, not a one-off movie about a real life scientist.

Lots of people are claiming lots of firsts, it is all PR spin. I doubt that a 2 month run could ever sell more tickets than a year long run, different capacity, different ticket prices. The record I heard and believe is that this was the highest grossing single screen for THIS movie. That makes sense. The fact is that a science movie was filling the seats at the most historic of theatres, that people were going back multiple times for the experience, and everyone I have spoken to was glad they saw it at the Chinese!

RogerA on September 20, 2023 at 1:57 pm

Star Wars had a record run at the Chinese. It ran around the clock for months. West Side Story did not run shows at two in the morning. Adjusted for inflation Star Wars holds the record for most money. It also holds the record for number of tickets sold for a single movie. It also started a fight between the Chinese and Fox when they had to move it to another theater for six weeks.

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on September 20, 2023 at 1:41 pm

I wonder if West Side Story (1961) holds the record for number of admissions. It played at the Chinese for an entire year.

MSC77 on September 20, 2023 at 1:18 pm

About a month ago several media outlets prematurely and erroneously reported OPPENHEIMER had become the Chinese’s top-grossing movie. At the time OPPENHEIMER’s accomplishment was simply that it had become the venue’s top-grossing movie for the TCL/IMAX period of the past decade or so, but it got mis-reported as being the record for the venue’s near-100-year history. It probably is #1 by now.

OPPENHEIMER being #1 for the venue’s near-100-year history is a dubious accomplishment, though, when you consider the decades of inflation and the IMAX surcharge. In terms of tickets sold, OPPENHEIMER can’t be anywhere near being the venue’s record.

Anyway, what was the Chinese’s final box-office gross for OPPENHEIMER? For it to be the venue’s #1-grossing booking I believe it needed to exceed $2,414,972, which is what STAR WARS earned there during 1977-78.

CTCrouch on September 20, 2023 at 8:14 am

Following the pandemic and slow return to theatre going over the past few years, it was definitely encouraging to see Oppenheimer cause such a sensation at the Chinese. As for the historic attendance vs modern revenue disparity, that also reflects the industry’s overall focus shift. The exhibition industry has become far more focused on per capita income than raw attendance in the post megaplex era; the Chinese’s remodel sacrificing seating volume for a “premium” experience exemplifies this business model shift.

isthisgood on September 20, 2023 at 6:45 am

True, but a record’s a record, and I just thought it was fitting that this technically record run for the Chinese was ending so close to the 10th Anniversary of the renovation. Still, even with a lack of numbers on attendance, Oppenheimer’s 70mm run here was definitely popular and in demand, see the round the clock screenings during the first week to keep up with demand for the film.

Comfortably Cool
Comfortably Cool on September 20, 2023 at 6:25 am

Highest grossing run in history doesn’t really tell us much. The true test of popularity is how many people actually attended, not how much they paid in total receipts. Ticket prices are at their very highest in history, so just a small sum like $1 million can be run up very fast.

isthisgood on September 20, 2023 at 6:03 am

Today marks the 10th Anniversary of the reopening of the theater after the IMAX renovation. In a few days, it will also mark the end of the highest-grossing run in this theater’s history, as Oppenheimer in the splendor of 70mm comes to an end at the Chinese after 2 months. Quite the recovery for the theater. It’s incredible reading about the state of the struggling theater 10+ years ago, and see how far it’s come.

Escott O. Norton
Escott O. Norton on July 23, 2023 at 6:07 pm

PR is a big game, always has been! The good news is that going to the movies in a fabulous theatre IS news again, and people are coming in droves! I just got back from the Chinese and it’s fantastic to see so many people there! As for facts, the media frequently exaggerates to make headlines, that’s just the way it is. They even misquoted the PR man for the Chinese who is a friend of mine, one article said he was the IMAX spokesperson! Here are the FACTS as I see them, we have a good summer’s worth of quality films that are getting butts in seats and selling popcorn, and as an advocate for historic theatres, that is the best news ever after surviving a pandemic!

RogerA on July 23, 2023 at 1:47 pm

mOOse1111 the media doesn’t seem to care anymore about getting it right

Richie_T on July 23, 2023 at 9:14 am

I remember seeing a 2:30 AM screening of ATTACK OF THE CLONES with a packed house back in 2002

m00se1111 on July 23, 2023 at 6:03 am

That gets one to wonder, did Roger contact KTLA, KNX, KABC, etc with this issue if it is ruffling his feathers so. If you’ve not been paying attention, the media gets ALOT wrong of late, and do not give a tinker’s cuss about it.

RogerA on July 22, 2023 at 7:24 pm

Someone needs to tell the news stations that Oppenheimer is not the first time there was an early morning show at the Chinese. All the LA stations are saying how the 6:00 am show is the earliest show they have ever run; WRONG. I seem to remember a movie called Star Wars and they ran the theater pretty much around the clock for weeks.

dallasmovietheaters on November 10, 2022 at 5:37 am

Capacity here doesn’t match details. TCL Chinese (1-)6 Theatres originally seated 1,446 at its November 9, 2001 launch as Mann Chinese 6. Adding auditorium “7” - the original screen - seating 932 in its IMAX conversion in Sept. 2013 would take capacity at that time to 2,378 (if I’m understanding the entry above)..

In TCL’s $2-million refresh of Auditorium 2 to MX4D motion effect seating in December 2017, the capacity of auditorium 2 was reduced to 102. This would take TCL Chinese Theatres 1-6 to - at most - a capacity of 1,371 and with IMAX auditorium 7 (the original screen) at 932 taking capacity of the so-called seven-plex to 2,303.

In terms of naming, Mann operated the new six-plex theatre separately at its 2001 launch as Mann’s Chinese 6 at 6801 H'wood Blvd. and retained the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre moniker for the venerable 6925 H-Blvd venue . So wouldn’t this facility be also known as something like Grauman’s Chinese Theatre | Mann’s Chinese 6 or Mann’s Chinese 6 & Grauman’s Chinese theaters - or some such - for its 12 years of operating the then separate houses?

Finally, shouldn’t the address of the so-called seven-plex be altered to 6801 & 6925 Hollywood Boulevard? The venues are in multiple buildings and the current address misses the preponderance of auditoriums and overall capacity (possibly 1,371 of the 2,303 seats if the details are correct).

m00se1111 on August 29, 2022 at 4:33 pm

Comfortably Cool
Comfortably Cool on August 29, 2022 at 12:27 pm

Will the Chinese Theatre be participating in “National Cinema Day” on Saturday, September 3rd, with tickets priced at just $3? More details of the industry event reported here

davidcoppock on August 9, 2022 at 3:53 am

Screened the World premiere of the Movie “Grease”. RIP Olivia Newton-John!!!! 😓💔🎤🎶📀📽️🎬🎞️📺

Escott O. Norton
Escott O. Norton on July 24, 2022 at 1:03 pm

Here’s one way it’s relevant. When the Academy first proposed their new theatre they presented it to the community as a place for small revival screenings, no new movie premieres. This is important because movie premieres is a major source of revenue for the Chinese Theatre. If the Academy goes against what they promised it will hurt the Chinese, and piss off the immediate neighbors. I personally don’t care how “state of the Art” the Academy is, it will never have the prestige of a grand opening in the Chinese Forecourt!

m00se1111 on July 23, 2022 at 1:24 pm

I’m sure that’s valuable information, but what does it have to do with the Chinese theatre exactly?

RogerA on July 23, 2022 at 8:12 am

The new theaters at the Academy Museum in Los Angeles are state of the art.

DonSolosan on July 6, 2022 at 5:40 pm

BIgJoe: Yes. Specifically, they’re talking about the old Fox Village, now referred to as the Westwood Village.

bigjoe59 on July 6, 2022 at 2:29 pm


I’m slightly confused by the info about the Westwood stated by my fellow posters. I’m interested in grand old movie theaters built from the get go as 1st runs venues and have continued to operate as such since the day they opened. does the Westwood fit that category?

Gregg L. Friedman MD
Gregg L. Friedman MD on July 5, 2022 at 10:30 am

Great historic landmark. I really enjoyed my visit. 5 Stars. By Gregg L. Friedman MD

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on June 30, 2022 at 2:35 pm

bigjoe: It’s not first run and never really was, but the Loew’s 175th St. in Manhattan, now known as United Palace, shows classic movies once in a while. They recently showed The Godfather and Raiders of the Lost Ark. I saw All About Eve there recently. The theater itself has been restored beautifully.