Rampart Theatre

2625 West Temple Street,
Los Angeles, CA 90026

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Additional Info

Architects: Lewellyn J. Smith

Functions: Church

Nearby Theaters

Rampart Theatre Wicks Organ

The Rampart Theatre opened in November 11, 1924 with Constance Talmadge in “Her Night of Romance”. It originally had 900 seats, and was equipped with a Wicks Orchestral Pipe Organ. The walls of the auditorium had eight niches, which contain paintings executed by the decorating company Robert E. Powers Studios.

The Rampart Theatre was still open in 1943, but had closed by 1950 and was converted into a recording studio. By 2016 it was in use as a church.

Contributed by William Gabel

Recent comments (view all 16 comments)

William on November 5, 2007 at 7:08 pm

Now 2615 West Temple Street puts it in the right building, it’s right on the corner of Temple and N. Benton Way. Joe I would say so too. Doing a Live search shows the building on the corner and you can zoom down to see the rear exits on Dryden Place.

vokoban on December 12, 2008 at 7:48 pm

Here’s an opening announcement from the LA Times:

(Oct. 15, 1924)
Los Angeles will soon break out with still another new theater devoted to the films. The Rampart Theater, now being completed at Rampart Boulevard and Temple street, is the latest addition to the list of first-class show shops for the presentation of feature films. The finishing touches are now being given what is looked upon by showmen as one of the most beautiful places in the city, away from the big downtown district. plans are being laid for a gala opening with a world premiere showing of a spectacular feature, not yet chosen. The new film palace is owned and managed by W.A. Sobelman, a theater man of long experience here and in the Middle West.

vokoban on December 12, 2008 at 8:16 pm

This is the article from the opening day. It’s a little long but has some good information.

(Nov. 11, 1924)
Rampart Theater Latest Shrine Of Cinema Lovers
-Growing Community Center Not Depending on “Downtown”; Building Described-
Another motion-picture house rises on the theatrical horizon of Los Angeles with the opening tonight of the new Rampart Theater at North Rampart Boulevard and Temple street. A shrewd assaying of the growth of the region known, loosely, as the North Rampart section, a growth that will be hastened by certain public improvements now contemplated, led W.A. Sobelman and John Balk, in connection with Lewellyn J. Smith, a well-known building contractor, to decide that the time was ripe for the erection of a cinema home for the people of the district.
The theater, which will be operated as a first-class house, with only the best of pictures, selected from the best products of the leading motion-picture studios, will open with Constance Talmadge’s latest production, “Her Night of Romance."
The Rampart Theater is a splendid structure covering a lot 100 by 125 feet, and costing about $125,000. It is of brick and steel, with stone trimming, designed and built under the supervision of Lewellyn J. Smith.
The interior of the auditorium will be 91 by 91, the only completely square theater auditorium in the West. It is magnificently decorated in soft colorings, with a series of eight wall paintings, done in specially built niches, all executed under the supervision of the Powers' studios.
By an interesting trick of floor building, each of the 900 seats in the house will provide a perfect view of the stage and screen. This trick, which carries the floor on a downward slope from the rear and a drop of one inch to the foot brings the forward seats up on a slope of one-half inch to the foot for the final quarter of the auditorium’s depth. The side seats also slope inward toward the center of the theater proper.
An elaborate lighting scheme has been worked out which has eliminated chandeliers. All the lighting is from unexposed bulbs in special pockets along the walls and in the ceiling. Every light in the place is on a set of dimmers, so that the lighting of the whole place, or any specific part of it, is under immediate and definite control.
One of the novel features of the theater is a ladies' smoking room, which will be equipped with comfortable chairs, ash-trays and the paraphernalia required by smokers, whether they happen to be men or women.

W.A. Sobelman, who is one of the two managing directors of the new theater, is a theatrical man of wide experience in the amusement field. For twelve years he was connected with the Rivoli Theater Company of St. Paul and Minneapolis, which operates a chain of fifty-two motion-picture houses throughout Minnesota. He has been in Los Angeles for about a year, the Mecca for theatrical men, he says.
John Balk, his associate in the management of the new show house, is a Los Angeles man of long residence. For many years he was manager for the Walter Murphy Motor Company, but has been interested in motion-picture theaters as an avocation.
Lewellyn J. Smith, designer and builder of the theater, is a builder and contractor and interested in large property holding in various parts of the city.
Fred J. Tabor (Taber?), a Boston banker and capitalist, is the owner of the property, and an associate of Smith in this and other properties in various parts of Los Angeles.

vokoban on December 12, 2008 at 8:29 pm

Here are some accompanying advertisements to the last article. These will be of interest to the theater organ people:
(Nov. 11, 1924 LA Times)
Phone 569-777

604 South Western Ave.

Structural Steel and Ornamental Iron Work
Furnished and erected by


By Wicks Pipe Organ Co., Highland, Illinois
This great Wicks orchestral organ, built especially for the new Rampart Theater, is one of the finest installations made in California. Mr. Cecil Russell, and expert on organ construction, considers it without peer, from a standpoint of workmanship and tonal quality.
To meet the exacting requirements necessary in a theater organ and to give the desired flexibility this Wicks Orchestral organ has been equipped with Wicks Direct Electric Action the most sturdy and simple from of construction ever devised. This construction can be obtained only in a Wicks organ.

Installation of this organ in the new Rampart theater was personally directed by
Western Distributor for Wicks Pipe Organ Co.
1002 South Olive Street
Los Angeles, Calif.

vokoban on December 12, 2008 at 8:40 pm

Here is another advertisement from the LA Times for the opening night. It mentions the movie, bricks, ventilation, and plaster.

View link

vokoban on December 12, 2008 at 8:56 pm

This uses the 2625 address:

(Jan. 26, 1927)
2625 Temple Street
Today & Thurs.-Bebe Daniels In “Stranded In Paris"
Fri. & Sat.-Douglas Fairbanks In "The Bank Pirate”

vokoban on December 12, 2008 at 8:59 pm

(Nov. 8, 1946)
RAMPART, 2625 Temple—-Claudia and David: Wife of Monte Cristo

vokoban on December 12, 2008 at 9:16 pm

I guess they also had some live shows at the Rampart:

(Nov. 16, 1924)
Former World Film Company Star at New Rampart Theater
June Elvidge, who for some time was starred by the World Film Company, is one of the all-star cast in “Chalk Marks,” which opens at the new Rampart Theater, Rampart Boulevard and Temple street today and tomorrow. The cast includes Marguerite Snow, Ramsay Wallace, Helen Ferguson, Priscilla Bonner and Rex Lease. On Tuesday and Wednesday, the 18th and 19th inst., “Potash and Perimutter in Hollywood” will be the feature attraction. Thursday night will be “Vaudeville Night,” with variety attractions besides the picture, which will be “Racing Luck.” Norma Talmadge in “Secrets” will be shown Friday and Saturday, the 21st and 22nd inst.

vokoban on December 12, 2008 at 9:21 pm

Maybe someone should come up with a list of theaters that WEREN’T robbed at some point:

(Sept 15, 1928)
A clew to the identity of the safecrackers who broke into a safe at the Rampart Theater, 2625 Temple street, with a sledge hammer and chisels early yesterday morning and obtained $500 in cash, was obtained by members of the police burglary squad when it was learned where the rope with which the burglars lowered themselves into the building was purchased. Through learning where the purchase was made the detectives obtained good descriptions of the safecrackers, it is reported. The latter entered the theater, it is said, by scaling a telephone pole to the roof and then lowering themselves through a skylight with the rope which they left behind them.

vokoban on December 12, 2008 at 9:29 pm

This seems to support the studio conversion comment above:

(March 4, 1965)
Around 6 a.m. on day recently Hal Peary, who lives in Manhattan Beach, was en route to the old Rampart Theater on Temple St.-converted into a movie studio for making commercials-when he came upon a two-car collision. He stopped to help but the drivers, a woman and a man, were not hurt. The woman was shaken, though, and he and the man wrote the necessary information about licenses and insurance for her. During this time he noticed the man staring oddly at him. This happens all the time to actors and Hal guessed the man had seen him in the role of a murderer the night before on the Perry Mason show. But suddenly the man grabbed his coat lapel and said, “Oh no you don’t.” Hal managed to calm him, then realized the reason for his outbreak. Hal was wearing his silver microphone membership pin for Broadcast Pioneers, a club of veteran radio and TV performers, founded by H.V. Kaltenborn. The man thought he was recording the conversation. Hal unscrewed the pin and showed him no wires were attached and the poor guy almost wept with embarrassment. He explained he’d been reading the night before about secret tape recorders.

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