The Hollywood Foreign Press Association has decided to give $500K to fund help in the restoration of the historic Egyptian Theatre, which has been around since 1922 and is getting a facelift. The money will go for maintenance and “essential technical upgrades” for the iconic theater on Hollywood Blvd. This comes on the heels of the HFPA’s $350K donation to the theater to implement equipment so that it can show 35mm nitrate film prints. That money will go through The Film Foundation, which is coordinating the project. The announcement of the $500K donation was made by the American Cinematheque.
The Egyptian Theatre is the site of the first-ever Hollywood movie premiere under the supervision of master showman Sid Grauman. The American Cinematheque purchased the Egyptian Theatre from the city of Los Angeles for $1 in the mid-1990s, with the stipulation it would undergo a complete restoration, renovation and adaptive re-use remodel. The theatere also serves as the host of the HFPA’s annual Golden Globe Foreign Language Film Symposium.
Here’s how the HFPA donation will be spent:
It will be used to repair the main roof and the portico ceiling and walls on the building’s exterior due to water damage. Likewise, inside there was damage to various areas of the ceiling and side walls and that will have to be structurally repaired and then restored. The theater’s 1998 carpet will be replaced and the concession stand and lighting will be replaced. Also, the theater seats will be recovered.
Exterior renovations will include the repair of the twelve palm tree planters and the installation of a new lighting system to uplight the trees as well as the columns that flank the entrance. The historic murals of Egyptian deities on the walls will be repaired and repainted. Terrazzo will replace the existing outdoor carpeting to enhance the grand entrance to the building.
On the technical front, the ten-year-old digital projector will be upgraded to a 4K projector, and the sound system and projection booth electrical infrastructure will be revised.