Earlier we featured the Los Feliz Theatre in the Los Feliz Village. Not far from it on the boundary of the Silverlake and Los Feliz neighborhoods is another historic Los Angeles Theatre that is part of the Old Hollywood legacy: The Vista Theatre.
The theatre was originally known as the Lou Bard Playhouse when it opened in 1923 when it opened as a single screen theatre and playhouse. In addition to screening films, the theater also showed Vaudeville acts on stage.
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It is one of the remaining historic structures from the 1920s, when Hollywood was first built up and began attracting residents to its new suburban homes from areas near downtown Los Angeles and East Los Angeles, at the time middle and wealthy class sections of Los Angeles.
The theater, which was erected where the epic Babylon set from the 1916 movie Intolerance once was, is a local landmark. It has been renovated to play new release movies, and retains its historic architecture.
The theatre went through many changes over the years, including a 20 year period where it showed soft core porn, then hard core porn, then finally gay porn. It was refurbished in 1980 by Thomas Theaters and currently plays new release movies.
Vista Theatre has been used in several films as well, including True Romance with Christian Slater and Patricia Arquette; The Crooked Web (1955), Return to the Batcave and more.
The Vista Theatre is a rich part of Old Hollywood and a piece of Los Angeles history worth preserving. It is located at 4473 Sunset Drive. More info is available on their website.