Sherman Torgan, owner New Beverly Cinema owner, dies

Via LAist comes word that Sherman Torgan died yesterday after suffering a heart attack while bicyling in Santa Monica.

My only personal interaction with Sherman was about three years ago when I was looking for a movie theatre to shoot outside for a zero budget short film I was making. A couple other theatres had asked for a few hundred dollars for the one hour shoot. Sherman, however, pointed out that he didn’t own the sidewalk, and even though we ended up shooting a bit of the lobby and ticket booth, still refused to take any money even when offered.

More importantly, he owned and managed L.A.’s greatest revival house for nearly thirty years.

The theatre is listing its screenings as “cancelled until further notice” thru July 23rd, which includes the Gremlins/Howard the Duck double feature mentioned earlier.

No word yet on plans for a memorial service.

…more from Jeffrey Wells, Green Cine Daily, Cinema Is Dope, and Sergio Leone and the Infield Fly Rule.

11 Replies to “Sherman Torgan, owner New Beverly Cinema owner, dies”

  1. Oh my gosh! That’s got to be the saddest thing I’ve heard all day. All week. I hit that place at least 3 times a month.

  2. Damn. Sherman was always an incredibly nice person. The New Beverly is the best theatre in Los Angeles, and I can only pray that folks step forward to carry on his legacy.

  3. I second that, Marshall. Please oh please let someone special take over the theater and keep those classic double features agoin’.

  4. Hard to picture LA without the New Beverly. One of the first places I ever went, and I’m happy to say it’s all but unchanged (better seats went in a few years ago though – thank jebus – ) over the 20+ years I’ve been here.

    He’ll be missed – and I’m sure he’d want the place to carry on as it has been. I sure hope someone’s in place to make that happen.

  5. I have so many memories of going to the New Bev since 1985 that I couldn’t recount them all. Sherman knew me to see me and was always warm and kind. I love the New Beverly, as so many of us do, and am trying to be patient until it opens up again. I kind of loved Sherman too.

  6. He was kind of a grumpy old guy, everybody says he was nice but this wasnt the case if you were a newbie going to the theatre, but i guess after a while he would warm up to you. I didn’t really know the guy that well, just went there a few times, but still sad to hear about this. His son is a really nice guy though.

    Long live his vision and hopefully the theatre won’t die out.

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