The Music Hall Theater in Beverly Hills has a new owner…and mission. Independent film distributor Blue Fox Entertainment announced last week that they had acquired the 3-screen movie house on Wilshire Boulevard, with plans to renovate the building to its original Art Deco glory and re-open as the Blue Fox Theater. Blue Fox’s founder James Huntsman stated that his plans were to establish the theatre as a center for an independent film at the heart of the industry. Blue Fox will manage the film program directly, featuring their own titles as well as those from other specialty distributors. The theatre’s location is easily accessible to industry professionals, press, and media and is therefore ideally suited to host premieres and special screenings. Industry giant Netflix put its own stake in the ground of exhibition when it announced in 2019 that it would take over the lease at the iconic Paris Theatre in New York and then in 2020 at the Egyptian Theatre in Los Angeles. Evidently, studios have a desire to control the premiere experience of their most appealing features, including a big screen, in-person presentation with a live Q&A with the performers and filmmakers to draw attention from the media.
Check out this extensive history of the Music Hall Theatre from the Historic Los Angeles Theatres blog, detailing many chapters over the life of the theatre, including ownership by Laemmle Theatres from 1974 through 2019, over half of its existence.