clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Star Theatre: Old La Puente porn theater may be demolished for condos

New, 10 comments

Preservationist are fighting to save the building

La Puente’s Star Theater may soon face the wrecking ball.
Google Maps

Preservationists in La Puente are scrambling to save the Star Theatre, an old theater notable for its distinct shape and troubled past.

The owners of the theater, which opened in 1947, have submitted plans with the city to demolish the theater in order to build condos, reports Pasadena Star-News.

Designed by architect S. Charles Lee, the building features a distinct lamella roof, as well as a rounded auditorium, uncovered and visible from the outside.

After its heyday of showing reputable movies, the Star spent a few decades screening more adult fare. Beginning in the 1970s, the Star found new life as a porn theater. The adults-only Star lasted up until the new millennium, when the theater lost its adult entertainment permit in 2000 after some health code violations and allegations of prostitution.

Google Maps

An attempt was made to return the building to a first-run family movie house, but the business failed, and in 2016, the property was purchased by the current owners—who plan to tear it down.

The city is currently reviewing the condominium plans for the site. A demolition permit has not yet been issued.

Danielle Gonzalez of the non-profit Arteologists says her group is lobbying the City Council to restore the building for use as a community theater offering art therapy and film screenings.

“It may not be 100 percent perfect or beautiful,” Gonzalez said, “but it’s still our history.”