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Proposed Sale of Sennett Studios

July 09, 1987

I read with incredible dismay your report (Glendale section, June 25) of the proposed sale of the former CTG Scenic Shop/Mack Sennett Studios to a "store-it-yourself" outfit which plans to tear down the sound stages and build storage facilities in their place.

Here we have standing one of the last vestiges of an era in our city's history that is bathed in glory, for through silent movies we Southern Californians spoke to the world. One need only see newsreels of Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks on their honeymoon tour of the world to understand that millions all over the globe looked to these very studios for entertainment and education. And how do we honor the memory of these film pioneers without whom the movie industry would not exist? Yes, in true Angeleno fashion, we build storage facilities and mini-malls.

Can you imagine these recycled sound stages, situated in a green park setting, as a permanent monument to the pioneers of the film industry? For here not only Mack Sennett built his studio, but also D. W. Griffith, Charlie Chaplin, and Walt Disney. What is left of the buildings should be converted to theaters that specialize in showing silent movies, which, while they do not draw the crowds that talkies do, still draw those who find the art form one worthy of study.

Have we so forgotten our roots? Are we so blindly avaricious that we can only think of more storage bins and mini-malls? No wonder the quality of life in Los Angeles continues to diminish. . . . This city's motto should be, "Anything for a Buck."

DAVID BOWMAN

Los Angeles

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