…that the beginning of the end of the “70s glory days would happen with the release of Steven Spielberg‘s Jaws, which was shooting off Martha’s Vineyard that summer and would open almost exactly a year hence, on 6.20.75?

According to a Twitter caption, the Westwood premiere of Chinatown allegedly happened at Westwood’s Avco Cinema, even though it was slated to open on 6.20.74 at the nearby National Theatre. Why not have the premiere at the National?

Update: It was actually held at the old Directors Guild theatre. Allison Martino of Vintage Los Angeles: “Some noticed a car wash across the street from the Guild. Good detective work!”

I’ve posted this summer-of-1974 photo three times before. For me the biggest stand-out element, more so than the dusty brown Ford Pinto looking to join Sunset Blvd. traffic, the VW camper wagon heading west and the run-down-looking city bus, are the thick sprouts of bleached yellow grass at the base of the billboard.

West Hollywood was a less attractive place back then, certainly in the daylight hours, but empty grassy lots were par for the course, and when the constant stink of smog and exhaust wasn’t as strong you could stand on a Laurel Canyon or Playa del Rey streetcorner in the early evening and smell the dirt and the grass and the other forms of under-watered shrubbery. Those aromas are gone now.