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Hollywood: Which sights are "don't miss" for film and movie buffs?

Hollywood: Which sights are "don't miss" for film and movie buffs?

Sep 5th, 1999, 11:34 AM
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Hollywood: Which sights are "don't miss" for film and movie buffs?

We are planning a trip to Los Angeles/Hollywood area in October and want to get in as many sights that have connections to the movie and film industry as possible. Clearly, Grauman's Chinese Theatre is important...any other less well known sights or funky tours of cemeteries, homes, studios, etc...that are good? We also plan to see the Getty Museum just so we do not overdose on silly, kitchy, sights. Thank you in advance!!!! Maria
Sep 6th, 1999, 07:09 AM
Paul Rabe
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Universal Studios has an amusement park type tour that shows how films are made and lets you see the sets where innumerable shots were done. Warner Brothers has a more business-like tour, but attendance is strictly limited and you sometimes must make reservations two weeks in advance.

The book "True Hollywood" gives the locations of several Hollywood death scenes, including the bungalow where John Belushi died. It also lists scores of cemetery sites.

Many stars are buried in Forest Lawn, but that cemetery VERY actively discourages tourists coming there to see the burial sites. Most others don't care.

The maps-of-stars-homes are a joke; most have info years out of date or just plain wrong.
Sep 7th, 1999, 03:00 PM
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Maria: also check out what tv shows are taping in the area while you're there. Tickets to most shows are free, but you have to wait in line - possibly for hours. Don't miss the HOLLYWOOD sign. b
Sep 8th, 1999, 07:30 AM
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A movie buff myself, I was just in LA in July and enjoyed going to the Griffith Park Observatory, which is recognizable from its appearance in dozens of films (from "Rebel Without a Cause" to "Bowfinger") and which also gives you a terrific view of the city and the Hollywood sign. Griffith Park itself is lovely and has great trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding -- sort of the LA equivalent of Central Park.

If you're interested in studio tours, two of my friends who work in the film industry (one a music editor, the other a PA) say that the best tours are Warner Brothers and Paramount. Warner Brothers is much more pricey than others (about $30 if I remember correctly) but is much more of a "working" tour; they actually take you behind the scenes to wardrobe, set construction, etc. and let you see filming in progress when possible. The second best is apparently Paramount and I think it's about $15 but you can get discount coupons from their website. Paramount's is just done on a walk-up basis with no reservations necessary except for large groups; Warner Bros.' requires reservations.
Here are the websites:
Also, I found the Frommer's California guidebook very helpful on my trip -- they have a whole section in the LA part that is about movie-related attractions, where to "star-gaze," and can point you to stores where you can find Hollywood memorabilia, old costumes, etc. Have a great time.
Sep 8th, 1999, 03:14 PM
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First of all...there's more than one Forest Lawn cemetary "where celebrities are buried" and they don't, in any way, discourage people from visiting. They won't however, tell you where anyone in particular is buried. You have to find them on your own and using the website, WWW.seeing-stars.com (be sure you add the dash) will help with everything you're looking for...PLUS SOME. If you want to know what shows are taping and get tickets online try, WWW.tvtickets.com/tickets.htm
Finally, you can get a list of shows and movies filming on location around LA while you're here by going to the LA Film Permit Office, 6922 Hollywood Blvd, #602 (across the street from Mann's Chinese), first thing in the morning, Monday through Friday. Post again if you need more info.
Sep 8th, 1999, 03:58 PM
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window shopping on Rodeo Drive. We went at lunchtime -- parking was actually free-- and had lunch. Don't remember the name of the place, but there was a fashion show.
Sep 9th, 1999, 05:32 AM
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When we visited Mann's Chinese theater,there were MANY people from various shows giving out tickets. We were able to see a taping (2 shows actually) of Jeopardy.
Sep 9th, 1999, 07:07 AM
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How about Venice Beach and the Santa Monica pier? Plenty of films have shot there, and if you're in LA it would be a shame not to go to the beach anyway. And of course you could spend all day street sighting: Rodeo Dr., Sunset Boulevard, Melrose Place, Hollywood & Vine, etc., and the Walk of Fame with the stars in the sidewalk.

In the cemetery vein, I have also seen something on a guy who gives a tour of "death in Hollywood" in a hearse (sites of famous people's deaths, mainly). Unfortunately I can't remember the exact name of the tour, but if it's still around I'm sure it would be listed in a guidebook.

And keep a lookout for Angelyne's billboards!
Sep 9th, 1999, 08:19 AM
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Forest Lawn doesn't discourage visitors.
Yes, there are more than one. I THINK the one in Glendale is the the final take for the most stars.

Also,HOLLYWOOD FOREVER, is one of the oldest cemeteries in LA. It's on Santa Monica Boulevard, east of LaBrea.
Tyrone Power is there, Rudolph Valentino, Douglas Fairbanks, the Houstons, and many more. Appropriately, it is on a fairly seamy section of the
Boulevard, but the place itself is under new management and is well kept.
Maps to the stars final resting place are two dollars.
Sep 9th, 1999, 03:18 PM
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ALN, I think the name of the "death" tour you're thinking of is called "Graveline Tours". It's also listed on the website "seeing-stars" in my earlier post.
Sep 9th, 1999, 03:45 PM
Paul Rabe
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My apologies!!

I was MUCH too strong in my statement towards Forest Lawn Cemetery. They do NOT actively discourage visitors, they simply don't help those looking for celebrities. When I visited them, they gave me a printed statement explaining that FL is an active cemetery, and that visitors should respect the feelings of families of those buried there. The paper they gave me also stated printed guides to burial sites were often inaccurate. But they gave no help.

Almost every other cemetery with famous people I have visited has been quite helpful in finding them, many giving out free maps. FL was a significant exception, but I was wrong to state they discourage visitors.
Sep 10th, 1999, 01:41 PM
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Thanks so much for all the help...I have checked out several of the suggested websites and made some reservations....we are staying at the Hotel del Capri which I think is in Westwood or near UCLA or both..hoping this is a reasonable, safe, place to stay as well as fairly well-located for our plans...any comments on this hotel?

Sep 13th, 1999, 08:53 AM
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UCLA is in Westwood and it is a safe place to stay. It's almost a city unto itself ( I work on the Westside, but live on the Eastside of town). As for convienence, you are near the Getty, the beaches, Beverly Hills, and various move theatres. NOTHING in LA is too near anyting else. It is a big spreadout city. Depending on traffic it could take you twenty to thirty minutes to get to Hollywood (Chinese theatre, etc) and about forty to get to the Observatory
(I drive that route every day). Just don't try to cram too much into one day and you'll be fine.

Sep 20th, 1999, 10:49 AM
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Yesterday's (9/19) Sunday NY Times had an interesting article on Hollywood and places to visit. They are at nytimes.com
Sep 22nd, 1999, 11:52 AM
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This is just a quick place to stop that is close to Grauman's Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Blvd. - the Frederick's of Hollywood Lingerie Museum. Sounds funny, but while in LA last year, we stopped in - the museum is small, and free (it's at the back of the store). It displays various costumes, petticoats, etc. worn by movie stars in a variety of movies -- really was interesting to see how tiny the old movie stars were. This visit will take 1/2 hour at most.
Sep 22nd, 1999, 04:54 PM
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I'm an admittedly star-struck individual who loves to visit L.A. I used the Frommers guidebook almost exclusively the last two times I went, and had wonderful visits.

Some other places to include on your itinerary: the Farmers' Market (next to CBS), Mulholland Drive (just cruise it for an hour or so, the views are beatiful. There's a "dogs allowed" park right on Mulholland called something Canyon...sorry, name escapes me!...I happened on it and decided to pull in to look my map over and ended up meeting Laura Leighton of Melrose Place. This was before Entertainment Weekly mentioned it in an article on where to "see the stars" -- now it's overrun with ...people hoping to see stars!)

The Getty was a breathtaking place to visit. Not being a big museum-goer, I enjoyed the facility itself as much as the art housed there. Admission is free, you only pay to park. However, you must a have a reservation to park, and they are booked solid for months. Two ways around this: you can take a bus or taxi, or you can use one of many area hotels' shuttle services. If you stay at the hotel whose shuttle you use, it's free.

Venice and the Santa Monica beach are worth the visit, too. Also, you can write ahead for tickets to television show tapings to avoid lines and guarantee seats. The address is in Frommers.

Have fun and enjoy. (Post back here when you return and let us know everything you did!)
Sep 23rd, 1999, 04:04 PM
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I've been on the Graveline tour and absolutely loved it. It's a tongue and cheek tour of famous places stars have meet their demise. Griffith Observatory is great. I was on the Warner's brothers VIP tour where you tour the lot in a golf cart. I really enjoyed the tour. You can't go to LA without being in the audience of a television show taping. The Getty museum if beautiful. Santa Monica pier is fun. The flower warehouses I visited on a Sunday morning were gigantic. I loved LA. I know you'll have a great time!

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