Norris Cinema Theatre

2307 Trousdale Parkway,
Los Angeles, CA 90007

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Norris Cinema Theatre (Official)

Additional Info

Architects: Albert Carey Martin

Firms: Albert C. Martin & Associates

Functions: Movies (Film Festivals), Movies (Independent)

Previous Names: Eleen Norris Cinema Theatre

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Norris Cinema Theatre

Located in the University of California School of Cinematic Arts, the Eileen Norris Cinema Theatre opened April 11, 1977, with a German film festival. On April 17 during USC’s annual open house student-made films were presented.

The start of construction was first reported in the Los Angeles Times, January 12, 1975. The theatre was funded by Eileen Norris Peck of San Marino through the Norris Foundation. Designed by Albert C. Martin & Associates, the 365-seat theater with 8,520 square feet was to be 71 feet wide and 137 feet long.

A film school at USC dates back to February 1929 with the course “Introduction to the Photoplay”, in cooperation with the Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences. Douglas Fairbanks, the first lecturer, gave a course in photoplay appreciation on February 6, 1929, attended by 2,000.

Among the previous guests and their films include Gene Kelley (1980), Don Siegel (1980), Sam Peckinpah (1982), Milos Forman (1985) and Norman Jewison (1988).

On March 22, 1987, Fay Wray made a rare public appearance at the Norris Theatre in a retrospective of the films of her late husband, screenwriter Robert Riskin. The Los Angeles Times reported “It Happened One Night” was screened and Wray had already donated some of Riskin’s scripts and her memorabilia to USC. The 341-seat large hall is known as the Frank Sinatra Hall.

On June 4, 2014, the Michelle and Kevin Douglas 50-seat IMAX theatre debuted, with a system donated by the IMAX Corporation. The USC School of Cinematic Arts also has screening rooms equipped with Dolby Atmos, 4k and 3D projection.

Contributed by Ron Pierce
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