|Hollywood Center Building, 1929, Zigzag Art Deco
Spanish Colonial Revival
The conventional view -
Hollywood in the twenties was an age of desperation. People were desperate to find the
good life, and those who came to Hollywood and found stardom
usually changed their names. The publicity departments went wild with sensationalistic stories of the celebrities' torrid
or unusual past; little girl from middle America
would usually wind up becoming an exiled princess from a European country. Those who did come to Hollywood in the early days and made it as stars had to handle life on their own terms. Some
handled it well while others destroyed themselves. Popularity and the freedom proved too much. Mabel Normand was one of the
many who died at an early age. Many more were to follow. They lived too fast and died too soon, unlike those who took life
slow and easy and were able to keep and enjoy what they had.
Most of the stars of the silent era did not make it into
sound, due to many reasons. One was that their voices may not have been suited for sound and were too high for some male stars
and too low for some female stars. Some spoke with thick accents, and some just could not handle the change. Most of their
careers were cut short. The few who did make the change became major stars of the thirties and forties, as did Greta Garbo.
It was the silent stars who created what we know today as "Hollywood."
Tough times, but the
architecture was fine. Here are three examples from the late twenties, built
on the boulevard as the movie industry boomed and Hollywood
became the entertainment capital of the world, as they say -
Next Page (Warner Pacific Theater)
If you use any of these photos for commercial purposes I assume you'll discuss that with me
These were shot
with a Nikon D70 - using lens (1) AF-S Nikkor 18-70 mm 1:35-4.5G ED, or (2) AF Nikkor 70-300mm telephoto, or after 5 June
2006, (3) AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor, 55-200 mm f/4-5.6G ED. They were modified for web posting using Adobe Photoshop 7.0
original large-format raw files are available upon request.