Hollywood – The Chinese Theatre and The Walk of Fame Essay

Published: 2021-08-03 03:25:08
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Hollywood is not a city but a district of northwest Los Angeles. Hollywood was once a city but the lack of a successful water supply and independant sewage system led to its merger with Los Angeles in 1910. In that same year, D. W. Griffith a director of films, came to the west coast and shot the first film in California called In Old California.
He later went back to New York and told everyone of that lovely place. It was during the First World War that Hollywood became the entertainment capital of the world, all other countries were experiencing the war in the own yards while the U. S. was untouched by it.
After the war, everyone around the world knew about Hollywood and people would travel from all over to be part of that magic. Hollywood is known for their films and the district uses that to its advantage. There are landmarks all over Hollywood that can be recognized by almost anyone. The Hollywood Walk of Fame, The Chinese Theater, and of course the most famous the Hollywood sign. These structures represent Hollywood and its famous culture.
The have influenced Hollywood and they continue to bring people all over the world to Hollywood. These structures are the outcome of the culture of the film industry in Hollywood, and it is also a mask to the people who come here to be famous. Hollywood makes it seem that everyone can be famous and achieve stardom and that is not true. Thousands of people come here thinking that, only to realize that it is very difficult to happen.
What Hollywood culture does it inspires aspiring actor and film makers to come make their dream come true. Hollywood has been in existence for many years and continues to grow culturally and population wise. 1. Hollywoodland, 1923The Hollywood sign was built in 1923 and it originally said Hollywoodland it was built as a giant advertisement for the housing development under the mountain. In the photo above is the original lettering of Hollywoodland (Figure 1), the H would letter be replaced because of an accident. Each letter is 30 feet wide and 50 feet tall.
Below the Hollywood sign there were searchlights to attract and each letter had its own lights as well. The sign was only supposed to last only 1 year and a half. Then later the Film industry used the sign and was famous internationally. It wasn’t till 1949 that the land in Hollywoodland would be removed so that it meant the district not the real estate development.
The Hollywood sign would later begin to collapse around 1978 spelling out “Hollyweed. ” Stars would donate around 27 thousand dollars per letter to restore them to their original glory. That is the sign we see now today. On February 7th 1973 the sign was added to the Los Angeles Historic Cultural monument.
2. Hollywood 1978 The Hollywood sign is one of the most recognized signs in the world. It was built during the film industry’s migration from the east to the west. The year 1923 was booming with many films most studios moved from New York to Hollywood because of Edison’s wrath in New York. The culture was beginning for Hollywood people were beginning to notice that the central hub of the movie industry was in Hollywood. Immigrants looking to be famous, citizens looking for fame all came to Hollywood and were greeted with the sign.
Once the sign was due to be removed it was never let down it had become part of the city. During 1927 and 1963 these were the years of the Hollywood Golden Age. As Hollywood started to collapse in the 1970’s many things started to change. Studios were challenged financially and audience were getting tired of the same films being made. The state of Hollywood was seen through its sign.
Falling apart and being neglected. The system that Hollywood had in the 1930’s had all but collapsed. 3. Graumans Chinese Theater, 1973 Grauman’s Chinese Theatre was built January 16th 1926, and had its first premiere in May 18th 1927. The first film to premiere was Cecil DeMille’s The King of Kings.
Thousands came to see the celebrities and the Chinese theatre then open to the public the day after. Since that premiere at the Chinese theater, it has hosted hundreds of movie premiers. Sid Grauman decided to build the Chinese theater after his great success with his Egyptian theater. It was Grauman’s idea to create concrete forecourt that later would be the famous footprint forecourt. It was said that the footprints in the concrete was an accident but Grauman kept the idea. Today you can go to the Chinese theater and see footprints of your favorite celebrities.
In figure 3, we see the Chinese theater during the golden age and we see it transform post golden age to a simpler look. 4. Chinese Theater – Interior Chinese theater was the host for the academy awards for years in 1944 to 1946. During the Hollywood Golden age the theater would have a new Premier every week. The Forecourt footprint has had celebrities like Al Pacino, Sean Connery, Marilyn Monroe, Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland, Bob Hope, Bette Davis, John Wayne, and Shirley Temple.
All were symbols of Hollywood at its Golden age. It was said by Mr. Grauman himself that “To visit Los Angeles and not see the Chinese is like visiting China and not seeing the great wall. ? In June 5th 1968 Chinese theater was designated in to the Los Angeles Historic Cultural Monument.
Just look at figure 4 above and witness the luxury and look of the Chinese theater gave to everyone that entered it and you too would feel like a Hollywood star. The Hollywood walk of fame was the idea of Hollywood Chamber of Commerce E. M. Stuart. The idea was to create the streets of Hollywood into the streets of the stars. With each star being inducted to the walk of fame the celebrity would have a star with their name on the street of Hollywood boulevard.
In 1958 the Walk of Fame had begun and the first 8 stars were Joanne Woodward, Olive Borden, Ronald Colman, Louise Fazenda, Preston Foster, Burt Lancaster, Edward Sedgwick, and Ernest Torrance. Those eight were built together so there was never a first star in the walk of Fame. 5. John Wayne – Walk of Fame Star In figure 5 you see one of the most famous stars in the walk of fame. John Wayne was a man who got his fame early in the golden age. He was able to get a job as an extra and eventually got a starring position in a film.
Charlie Chaplin arrived in Hollywood and was signed right away to keystone studio making 150 dollars a week. These actors made the trip to Hollywood with success and people began to follow in their footsteps. But what happens to Hollywood when all the jobs are taken? Hollywood during the 1927 through the 1963 was Hollywood’s Golden Age. People all over the world were going to Hollywood to make their acting careers come true. During the 30’s there were so many movie studios in Hollywood. There were so many studios and people who did come to Hollywood and were able to become famous.
James Stewart was a product of this, and of course it wouldn’t help to date someone in the business. In the golden age of Hollywood Film studios had a system called the Hollywood Studio system. The Hollywood system is where actors were employees of the film studio and worked a based wage. This system allowed up and coming young actors to be hired by the studio in a minimum wage and if talented enough to eventually be featured as a star in a film. Hollywood was doing great but many immigrants came to Hollywood and tried to get jobs in the film industry.
Their biggest obstacle was trying to learn English without creating accents. Hollywood film companies had the many options of picking any one they want. There is a sad story about Elizabeth Short, she came to Hollywood and was greeted by the Hollywood sign went to the Chinese theater. She tried to become an actress but failed and in January 15th 1947 she was murdered. Her death would never be solved and like the Hollywood sign she would forever known as the Black dahlia.
To this day Hollywood tours still visit the location of her death it is sad to see that her death spot is a cultural location of Hollywood. Hollywood is also known for another business as well, the porn business. Stars were greeted by the big sign and movie palaces but when they failed to get a starring role some were convinced by agents to try the alternative. Porn began to rise in the Hollywood because it gave jobs women and men who couldn’t find it somewhere else. In the reading Stansell the children went and got money in the streets with any means necessary approach.
In Hollywood they were doing the same but this time it was legal. Another way in which actors and actress were getting their way into Hollywood was by sleeping around Charlie Chaplin would marry four times. His wives would be featured as the main actress in his movies. When before they were never in a film before. Hollywood was a dream for everyone but in reality there was cloud over the sunny city. During the end of the Hollywood golden area things only got worst.
The studios were no longer able to use the Hollywood studio system. Actors were no longer employed by the studios and now had to audition to be in movie from the studios. This was during the time when the Hollywood sign in figure 2 started to collapse. No longer paid a weekly-based salary but an amount to be in the film.
Some stars struggled with the system and just retired. This led the way for new actors and directors to have a chance to work in the new Hollywood system. The new system gave new opportunities but people were still coming to California and not finding work. In this era, it wasn’t just about coming to Hollywood to find a job.
You needed to know someone who worked in the business. 65 percent of people who received jobs in the movie industry in the 1970’s was through connections. Steven Spielberg was a person who got a job working with a friend as an assistant director and eventually he worked his way up. Only 10 percent of people who came to Hollywood to get a job in the industry actually got it the rest either went back home or got a job somewhere else.
Another 10 percent went to go be part of the adult industry either making it there or eventually giving up. The adult industry eventually began to receive strict rules and was no longer shown in theaters the same way as films. In the 1990’s Hollywood was starting a new turn with technology. By the 1990’s, Chinese theater was being visited by more than a million people a year. Today the theater still has premieres and hundreds of people still go to see the stars that attend them.
The Hollywood sign is the most recognizable landmark in the world and to this stay still greets everyone. Hollywood studios no longer fill Hollywood in fact the only studio to still be in Hollywood is Paramount. All the other have moved around the areas but not far from Hollywood. The Hollywood walk of fame was restored in 2008 replacing the broken stars with new ones. As of 2008 there are 2,365 stars on the walk of fame and that number continues to grow. Hollywood at its height was a dream but during the 70’s and 80’s it achieved its worst state.
That was when Hollywood fate was uncertain, and people didn’t want to invest in a future that was uncertain. The buildings deteriorated and were facing many problems. It wasn’t till the 90’s that when Hollywood saw a future in CGI and Digital Production that Hollywood then began to embrace the future. By 2010 all most all-historic building in Hollywood would be restored. 6. Today’s Walk of Fame Hollywood is still a dream for people.
A survey stated that people still dream of becoming movie stars. It has been a rough ride for Hollywood with the emergence of internet and home video Hollywood is finding it difficult to attract the same amount of people it once did in the 1920’s. Hollywood for its culture and history is one of the most visited places on earth. People come all over the world to see were there famous stars have laid to rest or were they stepped in cement. There homes are shown in tours and there is no way of ignoring the presence of that Hollywood sign up on that hill.
Figure 6 shows the walk of fame today. F But where ever you walk in Hollywood boulevard just look down and see the culture of Hollywood on your feet and in that star with a celebrity that changed the world in the past or in the present, but see a blank star and you can see a celebrity that is going to change the future.
1. Custen, George F.
“Hollywood History and the Production of Culture. ” Journal of Communication, 36. 2 (1986): 123-133. 2.
Jones, Janna. “Channeling Hollywood. ” Journal of Popular Film ; Television, 31. 3 (2003): 109-108.
3. Nardi, Peter m. “The Reality of Illusion: The Magic Castle in Hollywood. ” Contexts, 5.
1 (2006): 66-69. 4. Raesch, Monika. “Alison Trope, Stardust Monuments: The Saving and Selling of Hollywood. ” International Journal of Communication (Online), (2012): 1894-1897. 5.
McKenna, Denise. “The Photoplay or the Pickaxe: Extras, Gender, and Labour in Early Hollywood. ” Film History: An International Journal, 23. 1 (2011): 5-19. 6.
Ruscha, Edward. Then ; Now : Hollywood Boulevard 1973-2004. Göttingen: Steidl, 2005. 7. Jaffe, Matthew.
“Hollywood Palaces.” Sunset, 188.2 (1992): 76.

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