also known as StarStruck Town, refers to the Hollywood area and its movie industry.
We came, we saw, we left. If not for the 2 interesting tours we had booked, we would have probably escaped after no more than 15 mn. The 2 world famous streets Hollywood and Sunset Blvd are as tacky as you can imagine: awful touristy shops and their usual collections of made-in China memorabilia, World Companies chains (Starbuck, H&M, GAP, etc...) and some poor souls dreaming of being the future "Tom C." or "Cameron D." performing some cheesy street pantomines, contribute to give to the place an atmosphere of "The quicker we leave, the better".
Butbutbutubut... if you love movies as we do, it remains a must-see. Indeed, it was both exciting and quite "moving" to see the famous stars signs on the Hollywood Walk of Fame or the footprints and handsprints of some of the biggest movies stars.
The Grauman's Chinese Theater "is a movie theater located at 6925 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood. Built over 18 months, beginning in January 1926 by a partnership headed by Sid Grauman, the theater opened May 18, 1927, with the premiere of Cecil B. DeMille's film The King of Kings. It has since been home to many premieres, birthday parties, corporate junkets and three Academy Awards ceremonies (the Oscars)."
Astonishingly, our guide told us that the theater had been recently bought by the Church of Scientology, which is planning on transforming it into a night club!!! It would be a disgrace as this place, besides its obvious exquisite architectural beauty, belongs to the Siver screen mythology. It also holds the the biggest non-Imax screen in the USA.
These 2 guys have directed and played in my all-time favorite feel-good movies (Han Solo and Indie are the coolest & sexiest heroes ever, period.)
"The Face". And may I add, what a face!
Some of the famous hand and foot-prints in the forecourt of the Grauman's theater: Thanks to her for "Una giornata particolare" and him for the legendary "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a dam".
Hollywood at its cheesy best!
The Kodak Theater. Since its opening on November 9, 2001, the theatre has been the home of the annual Academy Awards Ceremonies (The Oscars), which were first held there in March 2002, and is the first permanent home for the awards. The theater was designed by David Rockwell of the Rockwell Group, and Theatre Projects Consultants specifically with the Oscars in mind. It has a seating capacity for up to 3,401 people. The stage is one of the largest in the United States, roughly tied with the Elliot Hall of Music at Purdue University, measuring 113 feet (34 m) wide by 60 feet (18 m) deep. The theatre was sponsored by the Eastman Kodak company, which paid $75 million to have its name associated with the building. It is owned by CIM Group."
It was totally forbidden to take pictures within the theater, but I could not resist. I was in no way risking to damage the precious seats (I did not use my flash of course). Below, a very blurry picture taken while our guide was not watching. I don't have to say that Ce was not impressed by my insubordination!
The Hollywood Forever Cemetery. According to our book guide, one of the best spot to see the famous Hollywood sign. Maybe not your usual place to have a stroll but for obvious reason the site is a very peaceful park with a lake, around which many birds gathered to enjoy sun and serenity.
The second picture on the right is the family mausoleum of Fairbanks Senior & Junior. The modest little brown stele in the 3rd picture belongs to Hattie McDaniel, the first African-American to win an Academy Award for her role of Mammy in Gone with the Wind, in 1939.
The Hollywood Sign "is a famous landmark in the Hollywood Hills area of Mount Lee, Santa Monica Mountains, The iconic sign spells out the name of the area in 45-foot-tall (14 m) and 350-foot-long (110 m) white letters. It was created as an advertisement in 1923, but garnered increasing recognition after the sign was left up.The sign was a frequent target of pranks and vandalism but has since undergone restoration, including a security system to deter vandalism. The sign is protected and promoted by the Hollywood Sign Trust, a nonprofit organization whose purpose is to physically maintain, repair and secure the sign, to educate the world about its historical and cultural importance, and to raise the funds necessary to accomplish these projects. From the ground, the contours of the hills give the sign its well-known "wavy" appearance. When observed at a comparable altitude, as in the photo to the right, the letters appear level."
Our Warner Studios Tour:
An interesting tour. Our guide, who hopes to be a famous scripts writer one day, had many funny and lively anecdotes to tell. It was particularly interesting to see the behind-the-scenes machinery and trickery. Shame we just had 2min 25 sec. to visit the Costumes Museum though. They have all the Harry Potter movies costumes!
I don't have a lot of pictures as the Warner has a strict no picture-policy, except for the exteriors decors and some main sets like the famous Central Perk Coffee from the sitcom "Friends".
The real batmobiles!
And a terrible spells-battle to end the day: "Confondus" "Finite Incantate"!
I was crushed when I saw that I had choosen Voldemort's wand...Ce had Hermione's one!