Saturday, May 16, 2009
In the last blog I mentioned how Jeff and I had attempted to take enough photos for a full 'Hollywood' gallery. Well silly us we have forgotten the huge tourist factor. We figured a Sunday morning, before 11am- I mean shouldn't all these people be sleeping it off or in Church or something? Anyway, as mentioned we will go back at 6am on a Sunday soon and finish.
We did however get a few decent shots, so I thought I would post a few now to keep you on edge! In one of these images you see a building that actually stands on the corner of Hollywood and Vine. The Capitol Records building is actually on Vine set back a bit, but certainly viewable from the 'corner'. As you will read in the history I have included below, this corner is the most famous in Hollywood, but is no longer even in the heart of the Tourist area. That would be more like Hollywood and Highland- which if you watch the Oscars, you have seen at least on TV.
A History of Hollywood and Vine
Hollywood and Vine, the intersection of Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, became famous in the 1920s for its concentration of radio and movie-related businesses. The Hollywood Walk of Fame is centered on the intersection.
The largest collection of photos of Hollywood Blvd. & Vine St. is on the Bruce Torrence Hollywood Historical Collection.
Today, not many production facilities are located in the immediate area. One of the few remaining is the Capitol Records Tower to the north of the intersection.The area was a lemon grove until 1903, when Daeida Beveridge allowed one corner of the dirt intersection on her property to be used for the building of the Hollywood Memorial Church for the local German Methodist population.
The historical marker plaque placed at the site by The Broadway-Hollywood Department Store and the Board of Supervisors of the County of Los Angeles reads:
Hollywood was given name by pioneers Mr. and Mrs. Horace H. Wilcox. They subdivided their ranch in 1887 and called two dirt cross-roads Prospect Avenue and Weyse Avenue. Prospect Avenue, the main artery, was renamed Hollywood Boulevard and Weyse Avenue became Vine Street. This was the origin of "Hollywood and Vine."
The streets were renamed in 1910, when the town of Hollywood was annexed by the City of Los Angeles.
Beginning in the 1920s, during the Golden Age of Hollywood, the area began to see an influx of money and influence as movie and music businesses began to move in, turning the local farms and orchards into movie backlots. Hollywood and Vine was the second busiest intersection in the area, after Wilshire Boulevard and Western Avenue.
In the 1930s radio programs such as KFWB and the CBS Lux Radio Theater spoke of "broadcasting live from Hollywood and Vine," and newspaper columnists Hedda Hopper and Jimmie Fidler regularly touted the intersection's mystique.
In 1958, the intersection became the central point of the newly-installed Hollywood Walk of Fame. Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins, the astronauts of the first lunar landing mission Apollo 11, were awarded television stars for coverage of the mission, and given the places of honor at the exact corners of Hollywood and Vine.
By the 1960s, however, many studios and broadcasters had moved onto more upscale areas, and the area fell into disrepair and disrepute, with many abandoned stores and offices, and the streets themselves, claimed by squatters and panhandlers. It took several decades for redevelopment to take hold, and visitors looking for Hollywood dreams were often taken aback by the area's contrast with shinier tourist meccas.
The Hollywood/Vine subway station opened in 1999, and led to more sustained and serious redevelopment in the area. On May 29, 2003, Hollywood and Vine was named "Bob Hope Square" to commemorate Hope's 100th birthday.
In urban folklore, many of the local buildings are considered to be part of "Haunted Hollywood", home to the ghosts of celebrities (and less stellar residents) of Hollywood's legendary past. The intersection has been mentioned or alluded to in dozens of songs, films, video games, music videos and other popular media, often as a symbol of Hollywood's lure as a destination for dreamers, or for its decadence and disappointments.
Monday, May 4, 2009
3 Happy Friends!
We journeyed down to Hollywood on Sunday morning hoping to get some good photos of some of the more quintessential Hollywood places. We did manage a few, but will have to make a second trip there- this time arriving at dawn in order to avoid the huge masses of tourists that tend to flock to certain places in large groups making it impossible to get a good photo-at least the kind I am looking for. Who the hell wants to see photos with crowds of tourists anyway? You can see that in your own vacation pictures!
I realize that tourists want to see these famous places- like Grauman's Chinese Theatre, but all the crap going on, on the sidewalk outside- like celebrity impersonators, and various 'acts' are really only there to try and collect tourist dollars- and are really so campy. But I guess it can be amusing if you never see things like that where you are from.
In June we are taking a road trip to the San Francisco area. We will also be spending at least a day in Colma- the city of cemeteries! The Ossuary gallery is sure to grow from that trip.