HOLLYWOOD CAMERA EXCHANGE
Hollywood Camera Exchange at the corner of Selma Avenue and Cahuenga Boulevard May, 1932
Hollywood Camera Exchange was one of the major photographic outlets of the "Golden Age" period, supplying professional motion picture equipment for studio use, as well as still cameras and equipment. Equipment could be purchased or rented. They also maintained a machine shop and repair service for all manner of photographic needs.
From articles in the American Cinematographer, the firm was founded in 1930 by Arthur Reeves and Cliff Thomas, two veteran cameramen. Art Reeves used one of the original (pre-2709) Bell & Howells in regular studio production during 1913/1914, and designed the Art Reeves reflex motion picture camera in 1945. In September, 1931, Art Reeves left Hollywood Camera Exchange to form the Hollywood Motion Picture Equipment Company Ltd. at 6416 Selma Avenue. This new company dealt with sound and laboratory apparatus.
Classified ads found in the American Cinematographer, 1931, show Hollywood Camera Exchange's address at 1511 Cahuenga Boulevard, presumably their first location. An article in the American Cinematographer, November, 1931, lists Cliff Thomas as President and C.G. McKie as Treasurer. In early April, 1932, they moved to their new location at 1600 Cahuenga Boulevard "in the heart of Hollywood". Popular Photography for October, 1948 lists the firm as Hollywood Camera Exchange Ltd. By 1951, they are no longer listed in the Los Angeles City Directory, but Popular Photography for May, 1951 has an ad for Hollywood Camera Exchange Ltd.
Their building at 1600 Cahuenga Boulevard still stands today.
Undated catalog cover, probably mid-1930's to early 1940's
From the American Cinematographer, September, 1931
Hollywood Camera Exchange's Machine Shop and Repair Department
From the American Cinematographer, May, 1932
Bell & Howell 1000' 35mm film magazine with Hollywood Camera Exchange's logo tag