Historic Hollywood Sites that you might enjoy!
Posted 19 April 2010 - 09:13 PM
Posted 19 April 2010 - 10:32 AM
Posted 18 April 2010 - 06:03 PM
> Lynn has briefly mentioned the El Capitan Theatre (which is on the block next to the Roosevelt), but I would highly recommend you somehow find time to catch a movie there. It is an exquisite theatre of the old school grand cinelas, and the opening of the curtains is worth the admission alone. Disney did a magnificent job of restoring this theratre and they keep it up. The staff all wear uniforms like they did in the old days.
I have tickets tomorrow night at the El Capitan for Alice in Wonderland 3-D. The last night for this film is Tuesday 4/20. I'm excited!!!
Posted 18 April 2010 - 03:57 PM
I agree wholeheartedly with you about the loss of Collectors Book Store on the Blvd. Back in the late 1970s/early 1980s, I loved to hang out. The old wrought iron gate that they opened every morning was just beautiful.
I had forgotten about Larry Edmunds still being on the Blvd. Another old bookstore I really miss is the old Pickwick books. That was another great place to get lost in for an afternoon.
You can't go wrong at the Bob's Big Boy in Burbank. Designed by Wayne McAllister, it is one of the great historic landmarks in the little 'burb. Jay Leno is often seen there on Friday evenings after taping his show at NBC.
Papoo's Hot Dog Stand is right across the street. A fire damaged the place and the sign and it was closed for awhile but is now reopen. The sign still shows damage though.
There is a theater company in the English Tudor style building just east of Bob's. Director Garry Marshall often directs plays there.
Warner Brothers and Disney Studios are both nearby. As Peter has pointed out, WBros offers a studio tour that is quite good.
The Autry Museum of the West is nearby as is the Equestrian Center. The Autry is a wonderful museum that has a wonderful permanent exhibit to celluloid cowboys of the big and little screen.
The old movie palaces downtown may be showing their age but they are still grand landmarks to an era that has vanished. Be sure to check out the pylon sign for The Tower theater. It was damaged in the 1971 Sylmar earthquake and has never been repaired.
Posted 18 April 2010 - 03:27 PM
If I may, for those who may be interested, there are a number of studio tours (Paramount, Universal), but my favorite is the Warner Bros. VIP tour. A lot of history on that lot. Plus you get to get things at a good price in the WB store there.
Lynn has briefly mentioned the El Capitan Theatre (which is on the block next to the Roosevelt), but I would highly recommend you somehow find time to catch a movie there. It is an exquisite theatre of the old school grand cinelas, and the opening of the curtains is worth the admission alone. Disney did a magnificent job of restoring this theratre and they keep it up. The staff all wear uniforms like they did in the old days.
This falls outside historic sites, but I know some of you will be looking for Hollywood memorabilia shops. Regrettably, most have closed up (Collectors Book Store being the greatest blow to the Blvd.), but there is still Larry Edmunds Book Shop (whose prices are still way too high on many things), Hollywood Book and Poster, and another whose name escapes me in an alley on Hollywood Boulevard.
Posted 18 April 2010 - 12:34 PM
Glad you (and everyone else) are enjoying all the info on the historic sites.
As for drinks, sounds good to me!
Posted 18 April 2010 - 10:43 AM
Posted 18 April 2010 - 10:22 AM
Posted 18 April 2010 - 10:16 AM
The Whiskey-A-Go-Go is on Sunset Blvd in West Hollywood. (The section known as "The Strip".)
I don't know the exact cross street but it isn't far from the corner of La Cienega and Sunset - which is on the route of the DASH bus I posted below. But the DASH service ends around 7pm in the evening which wouldn't get you there if you wanted to see a show at "The Whiskey" one night. You'd have to cab it.
Kyle In Hollywood
Posted 18 April 2010 - 09:33 AM
Posted 18 April 2010 - 01:14 AM
Where is the Whisky A Go Go???? Is that walking distance or a DASH ride away?
Posted 18 April 2010 - 12:57 AM
*Mae West?s home:*
570 North Rossmore Avenue
Mae wanted to leave near Paramount Studios. As soon as she made it big, she bought this building and lived in the penthouse for almost half a century. The building was built in the late 1920s and is a testament to Art Deco styling.
The d?cor of her penthouse is legendary. Plush white carpet, white furniture, white appliances, white on white and more white. The interior was designed to show off Ms. West in the best possible light at all times.
Legend has it that at twilight time, a champagne colored light would filter in and frame Ms. West as she sat interviews. They also say Ms. West so hated the look of the building across the street that she bought one, too.
Local historian and broadcaster Huell Howser lives in Mae?s penthouse these days.
*Norma Desmond?s Mansion*
Northwest corner, Wilshire and Irving Blvds.
The pictures may have gotten smaller but Norma had a mansion that was fit not only for a star of her former stature but for an oil millionaire as well. J. Paul Getty owned the mansion but when he and Mrs. Getty split up, she got the house in the divorce.
Billy Wilder came looking for a mansion near Paramount Studios and Mrs. Getty had one. Only drawback, it didn?t have a swimming pool. Paramount dug a pool and filled it up but it was a Hollywood pool, not for daily use but for motion pictures.
When Warners came looking for a spooky mansion with an empty pool, Mrs. Getty was only too happy to rent the mansion and the empty pool to the filmmakers.
The house was demolished in the late 1950s.
*Double Indemnity House*
6301 Quebec Street
Murder always smells honeysuckle here in the City of Angels and probably, moreso, at this house. The interiors were all filmed on the Paramount lot but the exterior was filmed here. The owners were recently spotlighted in the LA Times. They have spent a great deal of time restoring the interior as well and are very aware of their house?s place in cinematic history.
1416 North La Brea Avenue
Before it was the Henson Studios, it was A & M Records and before that it was home to Chaplin Studios. Over the last eighty years the names may have changed but the row of fairy tale Tudor cottages have not changed their exteriors. Built in 1918 by Chaplin, he expanded his empire to include the entire block from DeLongpre to Sunset.
Chaplin is said to have lived on the lot in the large Tudor mansion. The mansion also included a horse stable and tennis court. In the 1970s, the mansion was torn down and a Safeway supermarket was built on its bones.
But inside the Henson Studios, many of the original buildings still stand including the main soundstage (where Chaplin?s footprints are in cement), dressing rooms, carpentry shops and stables.
Chaplin sold the studio in the 1950s. Owners included Red Skelton, American International and CBS. If you were a big fan of *Superman* with George Reeves, many of the episodes were shot here. *Perry Mason* with Raymond Burr was another show shot here.
In 1966, Herb Alpert and Jerry Moss took over the studios, restored them and made them A&M headquarters.
When Alpert decided to finally sell the property, Jim Henson?s family bought the property and have kept it intact.
*The Brown Derby*
3377 Wilshire Blvd.
This is the location of the original Brown Derby. Original owners included Gloria Swanson and her husband, Herbert K. Somborn. The restaurant opened the year his divorce from Swanson became final, 1926. There are lots of legends of how the restaurant got its shape, everything from the shape of Gov. Al Smith?s hat to a friend who said ?If you know anything about food, you can sell it out of hat.?
There were five locations over the years including one in Beverly Hills, one in Los Feliz and the glamorous one in Hollywood.
It became a landmark along with its signature Cobb Salad.
In the late 1970s, the restaurant was sold to developers who promised to keep the hat. Well, they did. Today it is located in the back of a strip mall next to Japanese restaurant.
3780 Wilshire Blvd.
In the 1970-1980s, preservation efforts to save classic Hollywood sites were battered left and right and many battles were lost before people realized that too many sites were being lost to developers.
One of the amazing stories of that era is the Wiltern Theater.
The theater was designed by G. Albert Landsburgh (Warner Hollywood theater) and famed City of Angels architect S. Stiles Clemens.
The Wiltern was one of the premiere Art Deco movie theaters on the West Coast. It debuted in 1931 and seated 2300. *Alexander Hamilton* was the premiere and the theater was supposed to be the flagship theater for the brothers Warner.
A special wooden ?Bridge of Stars? was erected over Wilshire Blvd when the city decided not to shut down the street for the premiere. The theater, built in the dark days of the Depression, struggled from the beginning. The brothers Warner pulled out and the theater was shuttered. At the end of the Depression, the Warner brothers returned to the theater and operated it until the 1950s.
The 1960s and 1970s weren?t kind to the Wiltern and in the late 1970s, developers were circling. At the almost 11th hour, a white knight came riding up. Developer Wayne Ratkovich worked with local architect, Brenda Levin, to restore the Wiltern.
Today, the Wiltern is still standing and is home to live performances. It?s exterior and interior beauty is still intact.
Edited by: lzcutter for pics!
Posted 18 April 2010 - 12:51 AM
Corner of Gower and Melrose Avenue
There?s a light at the corner. While you are cooling your heels waiting for the light to change and to make a left hand turn, look over and up. See that partial globe coming out of the roofline? That?s all that?s left of RKO Studios. At one time, the radio tower stood atop the globe just like in the logo!
Today it is part of Paramount Pictures.
5451 Marathon Street
?I?m ready for my close-up, Mr. DeMille.? Are you?
This is the famous gate through which Gloria Swanson drove for her meeting with C.B. DeMille. This is probably the most famous studio entrance in Hollywood. The Gate has been immortalized in newsreels, movies and television shows.
Behind the Gate is the last standing studio located in Hollywood (Warners and Universal are in the Valley, Fox is located in Century City, the old MGM lot, now Sony, is in Culver City. Columbia is now owned by Sony.
Jesse Lasky, Sam Goldwyn and CB DeMille all teamed up to make the first feature produced in Hollywood, *The Squaw Man* (see the original post in this thread about the barn that is now home to Hollywood Heritage.)
Lasky would go on, with Adolph Zukor, to be a major force at Paramount and CB DeMille worked for years at the studio as a producer and a director.
Edited by: lzcutter for pics!
Posted 18 April 2010 - 12:39 AM
while the Hollywood & Highland mall is interesting, if you want to do some SHOPPING, then I suggest making the short trip to the Beverly Center.
And it is just a short trip by local DASH bus from the corner of Hollywood & Highland.
It travels a "scenic" route down Sunset Blvd and then La Cienga. Best of all, the fare on Dash Busses is only 25 cents!
Kyle In Hollywood
Posted 17 April 2010 - 11:31 PM
There is an entire retail mall at Hollywood and Highland, right across the street from the Roosevelt Hotel and next door to the Chinese Theater.
Posted 17 April 2010 - 10:54 PM
Posted 17 April 2010 - 10:41 PM
*CBS Columbia Square*
Gower St and Sunset Blvd.
Here is where Hollywood, the dream factory, first started. Where the now deserted (and endangered) CBS Columbia Square stands on the north side of Sunset, once stood the first film studio in Hollywood, the Nestor Film Company. NFC was out of Bayonne, NJ and in 1911 they came west to escape the Patent Wars and Edison?s Men.
According to Kevin Brownlow, there was originally an old roadhouse that had fallen victim to the ultra-conservative residents of the little burg. The owner was more than happy to sell his property and if the new owners were in the dreaded movie business (which the residents seemed to really dislike) that was even better.
The Nestor group got to work immediately and were soon churning out product. Two brothers, Al and Charles Christie, worked as producer and director of many of the one-reelers. They soon changed the name of the studio to ?Christie?s? and continued to produce their *?Christie Comedies?* on the lot until the 1930s. As the Depression worsened, the Christie brothers began renting out the lot.
In 1936, CBS bought out the Christies? and tore down their small studio. Work began on Columbia Square, their new radio headquarters on the west coast.
At this time, NBC Radio was nearby at Vine and Sunset as well.
The International style of architecture that Columbia Square represents is one of the last examples of that architecture style still standing in the City of Angels.
Radio Broadcasts from Columbia Square include: *Burns and Allen*, *Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy*, *Beulah* and *The Lucky Strike Hit Parade*.
When CBS got involved in television, they just added on. Up until last year, Channel 2, the local CBS affiliate, broadcast all its news from this location. Now all CBS production and news coverage is done from the Radford Lot in Studio City.
Southwest corner of Sunset and Gower.
This western style strip mall, anchored by a Denny?s is the former spot of Gower Gulch. The western motif of the strip mall is supposed to be an homage to its former life as Gower Gulch, where various cowboys and Indians would gather, often in costume, every day in hopes of landing work at one of the various small studios that surrounded the area. Those studios were better known as Poverty Row.
*Sunset ?Gower Studios*
Look closely at that long row of windows that go down Gower Street. This is former home of the King of Poverty Row (until Frank Capra worked his magic and the studio went uptown), Columbia Studios. It was here that notorious studio boss, Harry Cohn, held forth terrorizing everyone he could.
The studio was originally called the California Studios and Harry and his brother Jack (and partner, Joe Brandt) bought the place in 1927. They changed the name to Columbia. Despite the various smaller studios surrounding them and despite the ?Poverty Row? nickname of the location, the Cohn Brothers, like the Brothers Warner, had big, big dreams.
With Frank Capra?s help, they soon left the Poverty Row moniker behind. Columbia owned the property until 1972 when they moved to Burbank to share the lot owned, curiously enough, by Warner Brothers. By then the brothers Cohn were gone and the brothers Warner had sold their studio to a conglomerate.
Today, Sunset-Gower Studios is a hotbed of television production.
*Roscoe?s House of Chicken and Waffles*
Just north of Sunset Blvd on Gower Street. Want some of the best Chicken and Waffles this side of the South? This is the place. Drop in, grab a bite. You won?t be disappointed.
6000 Santa Monica Blvd.
This is the old Hollywood Memorial Park Cemetery. This is where Hattie McDaniel wanted to be buried but the owner would not allow it because she was African American. Today, the new owners have a tribute to Hattie where Hattie wanted to be buried. Doug Fairbanks, Sr, Tyrone Power, the Cohn Brothers, CB DeMille, this is where the legions of classic Hollywood come to rest. If they aren?t here, they are at Forest Lawn, but most are here.
Rudy Valentino is interred and every year the ?woman in black? still appears to mourn his passing.
In the summer, movies are projected on the side of his crypt.
Edited by: lzcutter for pics!
Posted 17 April 2010 - 09:19 PM
*First United Methodist Church of Hollywood*
6817 Franklin Avenue
Anchoring the northwest corner of Franklin and Highland Avenues, this church has a cinematic past. With its neo-Gothic architecture it has a wood-beamed ceiling that is a smaller version of the one in Westminster Abbey.
The church opened in 1929 and has starred in *What Price Hollywood?* (Constance Bennett marries her polo-playing boy toy here), *One Foot in Heaven* and it is here that terrified Angelenos in *War of the Worlds* sought refuge from the Martian attacks on their city.
1541 N. Highland Avenue
Not far from the Roosevelt Hotel. The school opened in 1904 surrounded by bean fields and lemon groves. Those days are long gone but HHSchool is one of the oldest schools in the City of Angels and is still graduating seniors. Numerous attendees have gone on to have careers in Hollywood.
*The Nickelodeon Theater*
6230 Sunset Blvd
This place has another storied classic Hollywood past. Today it is home to Nickelodeon Studios but back in the day it was the Earl Carroll Theater. The beautiful neon sign declared ?through these portals pass the most beautiful girls in the world? and they did indeed. Yvonne DeCarlo, Sheree North, Marie McDonald and more all got their start here.
In 1948, Carroll and his wife were killed in a plane crash.
In 1953, the theater was reimagined as the Moulin Rouge, with live big-name entertainment. Those of us of a certain age remember it for it?s *Queen For a Day* tv show which offered as its prize, a wonderful day in Hollywood.
In the late 1960s, the Smother Brothers bought the property and brought *Hair* to Los Angeles. They renamed the theater the Aquarius to fit in with the theme.
*The Cinerama Dome*
6360 Sunset Blvd
For over forty years the Dome has anchored this end of Sunset Blvd. It has seen a number of changes in the neighborhood but the Dome has endured. The Dome, designed by Welton Becket, opened in 1963 with *It?s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World*. It offered state of the art Cinerama and stereo sound.
About ten years ago, developers were threatening to tear the Dome down. Thanks to the LA Conservancy?s Modern Committee, Hollywood Heritage, SavetheDome and the citizens of the City of Angels, that didn?t happen. Today, the Dome is the cornerstone of the Arclight?s theater complex.
Edited by: lzcutter on Apr 17, 2010 7:20 PM
Edited by: lzcutter for pics!
Posted 17 April 2010 - 08:45 PM
You are great!!! Thanks for all this info.
I'm going to the Hollywood Bowl on Tuesday night to see the Eagles. I'm not a huge fan, but, the Eagles at the Hollywood Bowl on a beautiful spring night. Well, that just sounded to me like a true Southern California experience.
If anyone else is going, or wants to go, there is a shuttle from Highland & Hollywood Blvd. Here's a blurb I just got through e-mail...
A) HOLLYWOOD & HIGHLAND CENTER LOT
(6801 Hollywood Blvd, at Hollywood Blvd. and Highland Ave.)
Departures every 15 minutes until showtime, PARKING CHARGE in addition to bus. SPECIAL OFFER: If you eat at the Grill, Koji's, Trastevere, or Vert at the Hollywood & Highland Center before the show, you will get a free shuttle ride! Just tell the waiter you are going to the Hollywood Bowl show and you will get a free shuttle ticket. Shuttle tickets at Hollywood & Highland are available only on site, no advance purchase.
Time to pack!
Posted 17 April 2010 - 08:17 PM
2301 North Highland Avenue
Portrayed in films and animation almost since the beginning of film history in Los Angeles, this famous amphitheater has been part of the Hollywood landscape since 1919. Back then, Mrs. Christine Witherill Stevenson, heiress to the Pittsburgh Paint fortune, decided that Hollywood needed some cultural. She formed a group that purchased the Daisy Dell. Their idea was to put on religious plays. Unfortunately, squabbling among group members soon broke out and that idea fell by the wayside. With new partners, Mrs. Stevenson set out to build a place for public concerts and Easter Sunday sunrise services.
The dramatic clamshell concrete band shell was built in 1929. Lloyd Wright, the son of famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright, designed two previous structures. The Bowl has appeared in films that range from the original *A Star is Born* to Looney Tunes and more.
In the late 1990s, the Bowl underwent restoration and renovation of its famed band shell that still has groups up in arms over the changes to the shell that were made. A museum was added and is open to the public.
John Ford, at one time, had a house that is now where one of the Bowl?s parking lots is located.
For more info:
Off of Camrose south of the Hollywood Bowl
Before there was Beverly Hills, back in the silent film days, Whitley Heights is where the famous stars of Hollywood lived. Francis X. Bushman had a large, opulent house there with the first swimming pool. Rudy Valentino lived in two different houses up there. Here's one of them:
The Heights was developed by an early 20th century entrepaneur, H. J. Whitley. He sent his chief architect to Italy to study landscaping and hillside construction. The architect gave Whitley his money?s worth.
Be aware that the streets are very narrow and very windy. Above Whitley Terrace is the home of Richard Barthelmess fronted by pineapple shaped finials.
The Barbara La Marr house is near where Whitley Terrace and Grace Avenue meet.
Nearby, the odd shaped house with the round tower belonged to Joseph Schildkraut. Other owners included James Hilton, Rosalind Russell and Beulah Bondi.
Further up Whitley Terrace is very steep Whitley Avenue which often doubles for streets in San Francisco. Just past the intersection is the former home of Jean Harlow with its fortress like garage.
Bushman?s house, called ?Topside? was located at the highest point of the hill. ?Topside? was torn down in the late 1970s by a developer who planned to put up condos. That spurred the community into action and they sought to get the district historic status and ultimately they succeeded.
For more information and possible tours:
End of Hightower Drive
Have you often found yourself watching the Robert Altman/Elliot Gould version of *The Long Goodbye* just to see that weird elevator Gould uses to get to his apartment? Well, it?s a real City of Angels landmark. Built in the 1920s as part of the Hollywood Heights development. The tower conceals the elevator that allows those who live in nearby houses on top of the hill to get down below.
2035 North Highland Avenue
Ronald Reagan and Gene Autry were just two of the members of this American Legion post. Built in 1929 by architect Eugene Weston, Jr., the Italian fa?ade made a perfect fit with nearby Whitley Heights.
In the 1980s and 1990s, it hosted a play set in an Italian villa before WWII. It was the perfect location.
Edited by: lzcutter for pics!
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