It seems like the gentrification of Westlake/MacArthur Park may be led by the theaters: last fall we heard about a proposed rehab and new hipster owners for the Playhouse Theatre, and now here's a TV-funded reboot of the historic 1926 Hayworth Theatre on Wilshire, just east of the MacArthur Park lake (known formerly as the Vagabond movie theater and more recently a live theater). Jenji Kohan, creator of Weeds and Orange is the New Black bought the building that houses the theater and the recently shuttered La Fonda restaurant in November for $4 million and is planning to move her staff in, says the LA Times.
Kohan's plans could bring major changes to the area: She's turning the Hayworth's second floor into a production office for her writers and editors (on all her shows, which include a new HBO pilot set during the Salem witch trials), while maintaining the first floor as a theater for performances. There are also two smaller stages upstairs, but it's unclear what will happen with those. "We want to bring the building back to its former glory. It was pretty beat up," Kohan's husband/business partner says about the Spanish colonial-style theater, designed by the renowned Stiles O. Clements, architect of the El Capitan. There's talk of a new restaurant in the old La Fonda space, too. Is this the beginning of the full-force gentrification for MacArthur Park?
· Historic Hayworth Theatre is entering a new stage of life [LAT]