Top Ten Things Not to Do at the opening of Grauman’s Chinese Theater in 1927

Grauman's Chinese Theater

 

Sunday marked the anniversary of the opening of Grauman’s Chinese Theater in 1927. The theater has been in continuous operation since then. The opening of the theater featured the premiere of Cecil B. DeMille’s King of Kings the story of the last five days of Jesus. If you have the luxury of traveling back to that time, take this list with you. It might save you a bit of trouble. Last week we talked about the first Academy Awards, so it looks like a return visit to Hollywood.

10 If you attend the opening, do not ask if you can buy a roll of Mentos. If you do, at best they will say, “never heard of them.” At worst, you have given away your time travel status. (Although you were too young or not on this Earth yet, Heike, but Mentos were introduced in the ’50s. Also, the theater did not start a concession stand until 1030. The usher has a funny look, and he is heading your way. Time to hit the Dusenburg.)

9 If you attend the opening, do not try to go under the velvet rope while Tiny the WWF champ is on usher duty. If you do, at best he will have taken his medicine today. At worst, he just came out of a briefing where the manager told the team to enforce the “no line cutting” policy at all costs. (I know it seems like you are pretty high up in the air, Heinz. Don’t worry, you will be coming down quickly after Tiny gets you outside. I would take a big breath if I were you.)

8 If you attend the opening, do not be overheard discussing the Star Wars premiere that was held here in 1977. If you do, at best the evesdropper will have no idea what you are talking about. At worst, the person listening is a conspiracy theorist and will report you to the cop standing by the entrance. (Good luck in explaining the term “Star Wars,” Hendrick. You might as well just hold out your hands and accept the cuffs with little fuss. You can always disappear later.)

7 If you attend the opening, do not ask that the volume be turned up. If you do, at best those around you will think you are joking. At worst, someone will get the idea that you are not from around here. (Since the film is silent, Henock you have raised suspicions. It presents a problem because you raised them during the crowd scene where the mob is getting out of control. Might be time to go.)

6 If you attend the opening, do not forget to check to see what Mary Pickford and Douglass Fairbanks look like. If you do, at best you’ll not run into them. At worst, one of them will ask for a light at the intermission, and you’ll have no idea who they are. (Now that you are on the front curb, Henrick you might recall they are not only present-day film stars but also part owners of the theater. Yeah, and both are narcissists as well. That’s why you were tossed out. Oh, and the fact you did not have a light helped make the decision to bounce you.)

5 If you attend the opening, do not leave your Dusenburg parked out front. If you do, at best the police will give you a warning. At worst, your precious antique will be hauled away to the impound lot. (Yes they did that back then, Henryk. Also, the front is reserved for Rolls Royces.)

4 If you attend the opening, do not attempt to pay for your ticket with your visa card. If you, at best the ticket taker will think you are joking. At worst, you will be trying to explain how a credit card can be used as money to the security guy who looks like Tiny’s brother. (Good luck explaining how the ATM backbone carries the financial information from the retailer to the bank. I think you are in hot water, Herald. The guy is talking about fraud charges. Oh, and keep that 21st-century money in your pocket too.)

3 If you attend the opening, do not sit behind the woman with the enormous hat. If you do, at best there will be another open seat. At worst, there are no seats, and you can’t see the subtitles on the screen. (Asking those around you what is happening will likely get a visit from the usher, Hermod. Even worse, a black eye.)

2 If you attend the opening, do not stand too close to a photographer if he is still using flash powder. If you do, at best, you might get dusty. At worst, you could catch a few sparks and lose your jacket. (There are some there using flashbulbs, Hesutu but those things tend to blow up and shoot glass everywhere. Needless to say, you don’t need to mention your iPhone flash.)

1 If you attend the opening, do not be tempted to take a couple of photos with your phone. If you do, at best you’ll cause a disruption. At worst, you’ll have people thinking you are from outer space. ( Go ahead and show Mary Pickford how lovely she is on your cell phone photo, Hiamovi. Once she comes to from fainting, maybe she won’t prosecute.)

66 comments

  1. Great advice. Though I read the title so quickly I thought it was about a restaurant at first.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can see that. 😁

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  2. Number seven cracked me up! Great list, John. Happy Monday!

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    1. Thank you, Jill. Have a great week.

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  3. Funny, John. I especially like using my VISA card!!

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    1. I don’t knw how you are going to pay. All our money won’t work. I guess if you ahd an old collection of silver dollars you would be okay. Thanks, GP.

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      1. Believe it or not, I used to, but they were stolen back around 1987.

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      2. Darn. Sorry about that. maybe you could pawn something.

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  4. So many ways to get hurt…by Tiny. I only asked about the volume because I couldn’t see around that woman’s hat. Great job, John.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha haha. Thanks, Dan

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  5. And perhaps it would be better not to ask for one of the reclining seats. Tiny would recline you right out of the place…

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    1. Ha haha. Tiny used to usher folks until he was deciding where they should sit. Didn’t end well.

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  6. Number 3 is always me. I’m around 5’4″, and the tallest people or people with hats always seem to sit in front of me.

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    1. Of course they do. I am convinced the tall seek out the short to annoy. 😁

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  7. Heck, I want to go just because I get to drive a Dusenburg.

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    1. One of my favorite old classics. Thanks, Craig

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  8. Gwen Plano · ·

    Great list, John. The Star Wars reference made me laugh. It’s amazing to think back to 1977! Enjoy the day – hopefully, a sunshiny day. 🙂

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    1. Thank you, Gwen. I was amazed it was so long ago. Have a good one as well.😊

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  9. Trivia question #2: What themed theater opened five years before Grauman opened the Chinese Theater?

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    1. Grauman’s Russian theater

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      1. I was thinking of the Egyptian Theater. It opened in 1922. (I screwed up where this reply went originally. Please delete that one.)

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      2. And you are right again, I new it was a Graumans but missed on locale.

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      3. Do not despair. I am a lot older than you (and everyone else). I’ve had more time to ingest useless information.

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      4. That is just it. I’m older than you.

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  10. Fabulous list, John. Women with big hats should not be allowed in at all. Or, if they are, they must check the hats for the duration of the film!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have to agree, Dale. Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. D.L. Finn, Author · ·

    I’ve been behind a big hat more thsn once:)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha ha. Thanks, Denise.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I wonder if that’s where the term “Top Hatting” comes from.

    And it’s a good policy to silence your cell phones, no matter the time period.

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    1. Yes. Can you imagine a cell phone going off to remind you to return to the 21st.

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      1. Buahahaha!
        I might wish to stay in 1927. What with the Yankees Murderers Row, penny candy and nickel cinemas. What’s not to love?

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      2. Where you going to find a 1927 nickel?

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      3. Umm . . in 1927? 😉

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      4. You gonna steal it? Don’t forget on a time travel deal your money won’t work. I guess you could collect soda bottles and make a few pennies that way.

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      5. I’ll have to collect soda bottles day and night and go from there.

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  13. I was thinking of the Egyptian Theater. It opened in 1922.

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    1. So true. Forgot about it.

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  14. Ha ha!! Great advice for time travelers, John! 🙂

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  15. Gee, I’ll bet those folks would have loved having a Visa card! And why does it seem ladies with enormous hats are prevalent wherever there’s someone trying to see what’s behind them?!!

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    1. You have struck on one of the mysteries of life Debbie. I have no idea why those ladies appear out of no where.

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  16. This is packed with interesting factoids, John. It’s funny and well researched.

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    1. Thank you, Rob

      Liked by 1 person

  17. You are TOO funny, Good material and well-researched. A fun read.

    Jay
    http://bondingfyre.com/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Jay.

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  18. Good job and hard work to make the list, John. I wouldn’t know what to do with #4 now because my credit bills are my receipts… haha. I still remember the days I wrote down on a little notebook every dime I spent.

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    1. I used to do that as well. Had a budget and wanted to know where the heck the money went. Thanks, Miriam.

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      1. Yes, exactly, John. I can’t see myself spending money without know where it went. Haha, before spreadsheet, I had mine in the head.

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      2. We kept cash in a divided envelope and used cash only.

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      3. My husband spends only for almost everything except shopping on Amazon and a couple trusted sites (by him).

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      4. spends “cash” 🙂

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      5. Haha, very kind of you, John. I’ll tell him. 🙂

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  19. I had never heard of this theatre, John. A most interesting post.

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    1. Glad you liked it. If you ever get to Hollywood (to pick up best screenplay Academy Award perhaps) you’ll have to check it out. Famous Hollywood foot and handprints there.

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  20. Not only shouldn’t our time traveler mention Star Wars he should keep off the subject of war altogether since it hadn’t been too many years since WWI had ended and the Nazi Party was formed in 1920. Also, some producer is likely to think he’s trying to encourage Hollywood stars to go on strike. A good list, John. 😀 — Suzanne

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    1. Thank you, Suzanne.

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  21. This was great, John. #2 and #1 were terrific. Flashbulbs exploding, I’d forgotten that happened back in the day. Showing Mary Pickford her picture on your iPhone, that was really good!

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    1. Thank you, Jennie. If I were there I would have shown her the picture and then disappeared.

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      1. Smart move!

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  22. Ah, how much changes in so little time. Cool info on the Theater, too.

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    1. Thanks, Pamela.

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  23. You make time travel fun, John!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We can go anywhere we want too.

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