Balboa Theatre / Pan Andreas West

8713 S. Vermont Ave.  | map

Los Angeles, CA 90044

Contact: Elvis Guinan at

Opened:  1926 as a West Coast Theatres house. We're a block and a half south of Manchester on the west side of Vermont. In the 1929 city directory it's called the West Coast Balboa. After Fox took over the circuit it was called the Fox Balboa.

After closing as a film house it was a Nation of Islam mosque (until 2009) and then used as a film production facility, the Pan Andreas West, a project of actor George Pan-Andreas.

Architect: L.A. Smith   


Status: Still sitting there on a desolate stretch of Vermont and looking abandoned. It's used for film production work.

More Information: See the Cinema Treasures page on the Balboa. The Cinema Tour page has several 2004 exterior shots by Ken Roe. American Classic Images has a 1983 shot with the theatre hosting a talent show.

    Cinema Treasures

A 2004 Ken Roe shot of the building as a mosque.
The photo also appears on  Cinema Tour .
full size view | on Cinema Treasures

    Los Angeles Public Library    

An undated Herald Examiner photo of the
 auditorium from the Library's collection.
 full size view

   Julius Schulman - Getty Research Institute   

My how the neighborhood has changed. This is a detail from
a 1951 photo by Julius Schulman looking south on Vermont toward
 the Balboa Theatre.  He was photographing the Bank of America
branch behind us at Vermont and Manchester, his job #1091.

Thanks to Hoss C for finding the Schulman images
 in the Getty Collection. The detail above is one he extracted
 for his Noirish Los Angeles post #30797 which contains the
three shots from the set as well as recent street views.
the set on the Getty site | more from Schulman

    SoCal Historic Architecture

Thanks to Steve Milner for this 2015 photo on
the So Cal Historic Architecture page.
full size view | on the SoCal page

The Balboa Theatre in a view looking north
on a desolate stretch of South Vermont Ave.

photo: Google Maps - 2015

 Click on the image to enlarge or head
to Google for the interactive version.

about photos from other
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    Candid Casting

A look down from the balcony for a curious sight
with the theatre in use as a production facility.
larger view

Note "Nation of Islam" still painted
 on the bottom of the asbestos.

The vista toward house left.

The rear of the house.
The house left wall.
larger view

A closer left wall look. Well, the organ chamber area is a
mess but there's still a bit of sidewall decor left to look at.

Backstage at the Balboa.

See a Candid Casting page for 60 shots of 2015
production work at the theatre for "The Matadors" with
George Pan-Andres and Eric Roberts.
| more | even more |