In 1922 the theater was owned by P. A. Englor the white manager of the Champion Theater nearby, but staffed by African-Americans. During the silent film era, most features at the Famous were accompanied by a pianist while Wilson Driver played drums, provided sound effects, and sang. In 1925 a guidebook gave the theater's address as 306 18th Street North.
In 2006 attorney and architect Nolanda Hatcher Bearden purchased the vacant building for $250,000 and gutted it. Beginning in 2008 she redeveloped it as a residence for herself and offices for her architecture firm, NHB Group. The building also has two other office spaces and three additional residential units for lease. The project was supported by $10,000 in city-backed incentives.
- "Colored theaters in Birmingham, Ala." (December 16, 1922) The Billboard
- Cooper, Lauren B. (May 23, 2008) "Developer moves forward on Famous Theater plan." Birmingham Business Journal
- Williams, Roy L. (October 21, 2009) "Birmingham architect, lawyer giving new life to former Famous Theater." The Birmingham News