Century Theatre

6013 S. Broadway,
Los Angeles, CA 90003

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Showing 19 comments

davidcoppock on December 25, 2017 at 7:53 am

The biiling is now a karate school.

DonSolosan on November 15, 2010 at 8:58 am

I see what you mean, Joe. Yes, they’re lamps of some kind. The one on the left now has an earthquake retrofit brace in the middle.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 15, 2010 at 6:16 am

Don, the lamps I mentioned are near the top of the facade, above the hooks that probably anchored the marquee. They can be seen in the second of the two photos ken mc linked to on June 16, 2007. They are painted red and set in squares of blue.

Looking at them again I think they might have been urns rather than lamps, but they still have an Oriental (middle eastern rather than far eastern) look to them. There also appears to be the remnants of a plaster frieze of some sort running across the facade just below them, but its design is hard to make out as everything in that section is painted the same color.

DonSolosan on November 14, 2010 at 8:40 pm

I went inside this building today, it’s being remodeled into a health club. The man supervising the work was surprised to learn of the building’s origins; but he had heard that a building across the street had once been a theater (that must be the Aloha you’ve been talking about).

The terrazzo extends inward halfway through the lobby. There’s two steps down, then you’re in the former theater space. The man said there were two office/rooms over the lobby which probably were projection and maybe something else. Any projector ports had long since been sealed up.

900 seats seems generous for the space I saw. From the pattern on the terrazzo in the lobby, I could see that they had built to enclose some space, possibly on both sides. I wondered if they had extended the projection booth and lobby room into the auditorium, but the way the roof beams connected to the wall appeared original and was consistent all around the room.

The lamps that Joe pointed out appeared to me to possibly be anchor points for the marquee — maybe a decorative chain or something.

kencmcintyre on June 12, 2009 at 8:32 pm

The status should be updated per Joe’s information of 4/11/08.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 11, 2008 at 9:43 pm

The building is definitely still standing. According to the L.A. County Assessor’s report, the building was built in 1922, and comprises 15,765 sq. ft. on three lots, at 6001, 6009, and 6013 S. Broadway.

The update should show a status of closed, the function as retail, the architect as L.A. Smith. As it closed before the age of twinning it undoubtedly had only one screen, and the announcement of its construction in Southwest Builder & Contractor claimed it would have 900 seats- probably about right, judging from the size of the auditorium as revealed in the recent satellite photos. The original chain was West Coast Theatres. There should be an AKA of Circle Theatre, the name with which it opened in 1922.

The style, just to make a wild guess from Ken’s photo of it was probably Oriental, of the “Arabian Nights” variety. Check out that pair of lamps, now painted vivid red, on the corners of the facade above the former entrance.

I should note that the Tyloon.com link to Acevedo’s Upholstery in my Comment of July 20, 2007, opens a satellite view that has a marker misplaced to the east side of the street, to the former location of the Aloha Theatre. The Century was definitely in the building on the west side of Broadway.

kencmcintyre on April 11, 2008 at 7:37 pm

We discussed this theater a while ago and came to a consensus that the status should be closed and not closed/demolished.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on July 20, 2007 at 4:24 pm

Ken: Odd street numbers are on the west sides of north-south streets. In the TerraServer aerial view, it has to be the odd-numbered Century on the left, and the even-numbered Aloha on the right.

The aerial photo shows the extant triangular marquee of the Aloha, and also the patch of terrazzo sidewalk in front of the Century/Circle directly across the street. Your photo and the aerial are proof that, though the address of 6013 has been changed to 6003, L.A. Smith’s Circle Theatre building from 1921-22 has not been demolished. It is currently the location of Acevedo’s Upholstery Supplies. This page needs to be updated.

kencmcintyre on July 20, 2007 at 11:07 am

This is the 6000 block. Aloha on the left and Century on the right, possibly:

kencmcintyre on July 18, 2007 at 7:06 pm

Oops, wrong theater. Sorry about that.

kencmcintyre on July 18, 2007 at 7:05 pm

A church group was holding revival meetings in what was described as a former theater in December 1961, so the Aloha hasn’t shown films in a long time.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 16, 2007 at 8:21 pm

Current occupant of the building is an upholstery supply company.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 16, 2007 at 8:12 pm

From the photos ken mc has posted, it looks as though the building had multiple entrances and contained multiple uses (probably shops north of the theatre entrance), but now contains a single business which uses only the one address. I have no doubt that the arched entrance belonged to the theatre, though.

Here’s something that’s probably about this theatre, but which I originally posted on the page for the Aloha Theatre, which was across Broadway from the Century: “In the issue of Southwest Builder and Contractor for 7/29/1921 there is a notice that L.A. Smith designed a theater to be built for Fox West Coast at 60th and Moneta Avenue (the former name of South Broadway.) The theater was named the Circle. It is described as a one story brick building, containing six shops and a theater to seat 900.”

kencmcintyre on June 16, 2007 at 6:06 pm

Here are some photos I took last week. Is there any chance that the address was 6003 and not 6013? Look at the 6003 building:

kencmcintyre on June 10, 2007 at 8:02 pm

MagicLantern is correct. The northernmost building is 6003, then the next is 6015. No more 6013.

kencmcintyre on June 3, 2007 at 9:25 am

On 1/22/50, the features were “Battleground” and “Port of New York”. Address is as listed above. Rent the latter film if you want to see Yul Brynner with hair.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 13, 2007 at 12:30 pm

silverlining: You’re at the wrong address for that party. The theatre you recall must be the Century Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard, originally called the Hunley Theatre. On that page you’ll find comments from many other former patrons of that theatre. This page is for another Century Theatre, located on Broadway at 60th Street in South Los Angeles.

silverlining on January 31, 2007 at 5:10 pm

I just came across this site by accident and am intrigued and delighted by the comments. I was a frequent customer when the theatre was in its “gay” incarnation. Aside from viewing many a film there, I also saw all of the live “male” shows which were produced a year or two before the business’s demise. I have many fond memories of the place— which I’ll post later— and I also have a recording of the Century’s “farewell” phone message which I could transcribe and post, too. It’s quite interesting and includes, as I recall, comments about the “anti-gay” LAPD of that era (I guess things are a bit better now, perhaps).