Vista Theatre

4473 Sunset Drive,
Los Angeles, CA 90027

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silver on July 6, 2021 at 2:30 am

Here’s the Los Angeles Times article about The Vista on Monday.
“Quentin Tarantino buys L.A.’s beloved Vista Theatre”

some quotes: “Tarantino said on the podcast that he was planning to open the theater by around Christmas.”

“While many local theaters have reopened, the Vista has not. Lance Alspaugh, who owned the theater since 1997, said in a recent interview with The Times he had been waiting on long-delayed government grants before reopening. "It’s bad that we’re all having to wait, that it’s as slow as it’s been,” he said. “It’s the difference between if you reopen or do you not reopen.” Alspaugh also said: “I constantly caught myself wondering during the pandemic, ‘Is it time to get offstage?’ I’m looking forward to getting back, and we’re going to, methodically and slowly.”"

DavidZornig on July 5, 2021 at 5:38 pm

1990 Suicidal Tendencies album “Light Camera Revolution” cover utilizing the Vista Theatre marquee.

DavidZornig on July 5, 2021 at 1:35 pm

“Quentin Tarantino Says He Bought L.A.’s Vista Theatre”

bigjoe59 on September 10, 2020 at 2:14 pm


to stevenj many thanks for your replies. I first visited L.A. April of 1980. so if the theater was “rescued” by the end of 1980 than it couldn’t have been a gay porn house for very long.

stevenj on September 10, 2020 at 11:46 am

Normally I would put in a direct link but CT thought it was spam so you’ll have to cut and paste into your browser.

stevenj on September 9, 2020 at 11:47 pm

bigjoe55….Don’t know what month in 1980 you were there but this blog post for the Vista Theatre says that Mike Thomas (who ran several SF theatres) “rescued” it in 1980 and turned it into a revival house.

bigjoe59 on September 9, 2020 at 2:10 pm


I just asked a simple question no need to get hyper about it. your 5/2/20 post states that “Heavy Equipment” opened here in 3-D in July of 1978. so since I first visited L.A. in April of 1980 the theater would have been a gay porn house
for at least 2 years at the point I visited. so I was wondering how long it stayed a gay porn house. again a simple question.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on September 9, 2020 at 7:51 am

Not exactly “just like,” but whatever…

bigjoe59 on September 8, 2020 at 5:10 pm


I first visited L.A. April of 1980. so according to hdtv267’s 5/2/20 post the theater had been a gay porn house for approx. 2 years at that point. how long did it in fact stay a gay porn house?

moviebuff82 on May 24, 2020 at 5:19 pm

This theater was shown during a segment on the impact of Covid-19 on hollywood during the CBS Weekend News.

DavidZornig on February 13, 2018 at 9:58 pm

Below link with a screen grab of the Vista Theatre in “Throw Momma From The Train”.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on September 10, 2012 at 11:45 am

In the Independent Theatres listings of the Los Angeles Times for February 10, 1971, the Vista was showing a double feature of Cindy and Donna (IMDb) and Girly (IMDB).

These were more low-budget sexploitation movies than full-on porn, but they were the sort of thing the Vista was running regularly around that time. The theater went to gay porn for a while later in the ‘70s, and then in 1980 it became a revival house, first operated by Thomas Theatres out of San Francisco and then by Landmark, which operated it more as a revival/art house combination.

Landmark abandoned the revival format at the Vista in 1985. The August 24, 1986 Los Angeles Times has the house listed as the New Vista, showing a double feature of Top Gun and Real Genius. I don’t think the Vista ever went back to porn after its time as a revival house. It did show some gay-themed movies during those years, aimed at the large gay audience in Silver Lake and East Hollywood, but I don’t think any of them were porn.

dtrigubetz on September 10, 2012 at 1:18 am

The Vista and its sister venue a half-mile away, Los Feliz 3, converted to digital around Sept 6; however, the Vista was allowed to keep its 35MM projector as some directors wanted it for special screenings.

dtrigubetz on August 3, 2012 at 12:38 pm

(Martha used to run “Phantom” at the late lamented Majestic Crest. The women dress up and it’s fun being one of the lone men attending)

This year’s Screening (Redux ~ IX) will be at The Vista Theatre.
Cheers! Martha (Boswell)

Cell: 310-709-8917

Date: November 10, 2012

Time: Midnight

Tickets: $20.00

dtrigubetz on August 3, 2012 at 12:32 pm

Nice to see about 160 people for the 8:50PM show this past Tuesday for “Dark Knight”. Veteran actor Clu Gulager, a regular at the Beverly Cinema, showed at the Vista recently.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on March 2, 2012 at 2:58 am

I saw that episode and was pleased to note that they use mylar (or plastic?) displays on the marquee, old-school style, rather than just hanging letters that spell out the title of the feature.

HowardBHaas on February 21, 2012 at 10:08 pm

The exterior with “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” on marquee was featured for a few minutes in tonight’s episode of TNT TV’s “Southland” cop drama show.

Robert L. Bradley
Robert L. Bradley on August 23, 2011 at 5:13 pm

I was there on Sunday for the 1:30 showing of “Rise of the Planet of the Apes”, which drew a very big crowd for a matinee. The theater is beautiful and the projection was perfect. I like the fact that they have screen curtains. Last time I went there, about ten years ago, they didn’t. The only minus is that the curtains look too modern for that theatre. A shiny gold curtain flooded with red lights would look better with the classic decor. By the way, I live in Virginia, and whenever I travel I make it a point to visit single screen theaters. On this trip west, I visited the Vista, the Crest, and the Regent.

dtrigubetz on June 29, 2011 at 8:00 pm

Attended the 9:45PM showing on 6/15 of “Super 8”. A great crowd a little over 200 in attendance. Many people in the industry go to the Vista. I just realized that the opening for Elvira’s weekend horror movie on KDOC was filmed here.

Parking note: I take the Red Line from North Hollywood and get off at the Sunset-Vermont station. The Vista is only two blocks east. If in need of a quick bite, stop at Von’s right on the way and pick up a sandwich and a Starbucks-they have seating.

hfleming on June 5, 2011 at 6:47 pm

I was reading an article about the demolition of the National in Westwood (sad) , and ended up finding the updated official website for the Vista and the Los Feliz 3, run by Vintage cinemas (happy).

Some great interior shots HERE

I love this place and am so happy that it still exists in this day and age of multiplexes and on-demand movies at home and watching movies on mobile devices.. We’re lucky to have it in the neighborhood.

Rolando on December 19, 2010 at 10:16 pm

It’s still open and they’re showing “The Fighter”. I usually just Google it and it takes me to Vintage Cinema.

spectrum on December 19, 2010 at 8:45 pm

I get a redirect when I go to their website, but apparently the theatre is still open.

Rolando on December 10, 2010 at 9:38 pm

I’ve rediscovered the Vista when I went to see “The Social Network.” What an awesome theater: lots of leg room, good popcorn, great prices. Downside: yeah parking sucks but you just have to drive around. I did see a roach in the bathroom. But all in all, the theater is clean. The audience is gay, straight, young, old, metrosexual. A nice neighborhood theater that seats a lot of people. Please support this single screen theater so that we don’t have to go to the Grove or pay obscene prices like at the Archlight.

Ross Care
Ross Care on November 23, 2010 at 3:04 am

I add to this album of vintage theaters and memorabilia from time to time:
View link