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Warner Grand, San Pedro

Warner Grand, San Pedro

Architect: B. Marcus Priteca

First Opened: 20th January 1931 (93 years ago)

Former Names: Warner Bros. Theatre, Warner Bros. San Pedro Theatre, Stanley Warner San Pedro Theatre, Warner Theatre, Stanley Warner Theatre, Teatro Juarez

Status: Closed; undergoing renovation

Website: www.grandvision.org Open website in new window

Telephone: (310) 548-2493 Call (310) 548-2493

Address: 478 West 6th St, San Pedro, CA 90731 Show address in Google Maps (new window)

The Warner Grand opened in January 1931 as a first-run movie theatre in San Pedro for Warner Brothers. The theatre was planned to cost half a million dollars and to seat 2,000 patrons, leading Jack Warner to proclaim it as “The Castle of Your Dreams!”. The January 1931 opening was a huge event, compared by Frank Fay and featuring an appearance by Jack Warner himself.

Featured Photos

Detailed Information

Architect B. Marcus Priteca was contracted in 1930 to design three theatres for Warner Bros, to be located in San Pedro, Huntington Park, and Beverly Hills. All three theatres were executed in an Art Deco style. For the San Pedro theatre Priteca partnered with interior designer and muralist Anthony Heinsbergen, a followup to their previous collaboration on the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood.

The Warner Grand’s Auditorium
The Warner Grand’s Auditorium

All three theatres opened within six months of each other in the early 1930s, however in the fullness of time the Beverly Hills and Huntington Park theatres did not fare as well as the San Pedro theatre. The Beverly Hills Warner was demolished in 1988, and the Warner Theatre in Huntington Park closed in the mid-1990s, reopening in 2018 adaptively reused as a gym.

Although built with a stage, in its early years the Warner Grand served mostly as a movie house. Whereas the proscenium arch is both wide and high, the stage depth is very shallow. Basic hemp-line flying facilities were included when built and were upgraded to a counterweight flying system in 2007. Organ chambers were included in the build however the theatre never received an organ.

In 1937 the theatre was renamed as the San Pedro Theatre. It prospered during the years of WWII, drawing customers from military-based operations at the nearby port and shipyards.

Stage of the Warner Grand
Stage of the Warner Grand

In 1953 the Stanley Warner Corporation took over management of the theatre, heralding the start of a series of different names for the theatre starting with the Stanley Warner San Pedro Theatre. Pacific Theatres took over the property in 1968.

In the 1970s, the theatre was sold to Arnulfo Estrada and was subsequently run as a Spanish-language film house called Teatro Juarez. The theatre changed hands again in 1984 when it was sold to Raymond Howell and Clay Colbert who changed the theatre’s name to the Warner Grand and started a refurbishment program in addition to running classics, organ concerts, and other programming. Successive operators purchased the theatre in 1986 and 1991.

In 1996 the theatre was purchased for $1.2 million by the City of Los Angeles, and the Grand Vision Foundation Link opens in new window was formed with the aim of preserving the building rather than let it be demolished or re-developed. Grand Vision envisioned the theatre as a center for the community, and raised funds for ongoing restoration and upgrades as well as booking and promoting events at the theatre.

Art Deco detail
Art Deco detail

HVAC systems were upgraded in 2004, new seating was installed in 2006 along with a major interior renovation, and in 2014 the theatre’s original fire curtain, painted by Armstrong Studios of Los Angeles, was “rediscovered”. In 2018 an appeal was launched called “Love the Lobby”, with the intent of restoring the original painted Art Deco designs of the main lobby ceiling.

In Spring 2019 it was announced that SPF:architects Link opens in new window would be designing a $4.5 million renovation which was scheduled to commence in Summer 2019, tentatively due to be completed in Summer 2020. Upgrades and improved facilities will hopefully persuade promoters to bring bigger acts to the theatre. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic the project did not commence. The theatre closed in January 2024 for a two-year $15 million renovation.

The Warner Grand has featured in many television shows and movies, examples being Melrose Place (1992-1999) Link opens in new window, Feud: Bette and Joan (2017) Link opens in new window, What’s Love Got To Do With It (1993) Link opens in new window, Pearl Harbor (2001) Link opens in new window, Seabiscuit (2003) Link opens in new window, Live by Night (2016) Link opens in new window, and has a starring role in Showdown at the Grand (2023) Link opens in new window.

Movie, TV & Music Video Appearances




Listed/Landmark Building Status

How do I visit the Warner Grand?

** Events at the Warner Grand are on hiatus while the theatre undergoes redevelopment **

The Warner Grand does not offer theatre tours however a wide variety of programs run at the theatre all year round. Check out the Warner Grand’s website Link opens in new window for the full calendar of events.

The Los Angeles Conservancy’s Last Remaining Seats program (runs each year in June) has occasionally using the Warner Grand as a venue for screening classic films. Pre-screening backstage tours are often available but very limited in numbers and fill-up quickly. Check out the Last Remaining Seats website Link opens in new window for schedule and more information.

Further Reading


Technical Information

Flying System
Flying System
Single Purchase counterweight operated Stage Right
Grid Height
16, 15 usable
General Information
Seating Capacity (Balcony)
Seating Capacity (Orchestra)
Total Seating Capacity
1,523 (originally 1,598)
Balcony Rail to last lineset
Balcony Rail to prosc line
Control System
Strand 520i console
Dimmer System
Located DSR, 48 @ 2.4kW and a 24 @ 2.4kW (all CD80)
4 @ Strong Super Trooper 1600 Xenon
Projection Booth to prosc line
Movie Projection
Projection Booth to prosc line
2 matched Norelco AA 35mm projectors with optical and LED stereo sound supported by SR and Dolby noise reduction
Screen Size
50ft x 21ft
Stage Dimensions
Apron Depth
Center Line to SL wall
Center Line to SR wall
Proscenium Height
Proscenium Width
Stage Depth
Historic Photos & Documents
Files displayed in this section may be subject to copyright; refer to our Copyright Fair Use Statement regarding our use of copyrighted media.

Photos of the Warner Grand

Jump to Photo Section:

  1. Auditorium
  2. Auditorium: Closeups
  3. Exterior and Public Areas
  4. Backstage
Auditorium: Closeups
Exterior and Public Areas

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