Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

This is the blog of Mark Wordsworm, the travelling worm. I’m a 25-year-old bookmark and can proudly boast my own Hallmark serial number, 95 HBM 80-1. You’ll probably want to read all about me and my Travelling Companion (the TC) .

Today’s travel notes

Me and the TC hit Los Angeles a few weeks ago, and drifted around Hollywood for a day. I bumped into a couple of stars. The TC took the obligatory photographs. Then we moved on.

My impressions? Woah! I was surprised how tacky Los Angeles is.

Travel tip

Spend as little time as possible in LA.

The book I’m in

The Shadow of the Wind, by Carlos Ruiz Zafón. It’s not as gothic as I was expecting, but I reserve judgement because the TC still has me lodged half way through the book.

The photos

Me and Peg hobnobbing with a star:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

“Walk of Fame”? Bah humbug. To be honest, I didn’t meet anyone who carries quite the same cachet as I do myself. Here’s another star. Don’t ask what that dark liquid is, encroaching from top left. I’m sure you can guess. The TC plonked me and Peg down right next to it! Poor old Peg could hardly keep it together, such was her chagrin:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

The Walk of Fame runs along Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street. If you’re anything like this worm, you probably think the Walk of Fame would be in a glamorous area of Hollywood, with glitterati peering out of every gold-framed doorway. Think again. It’s scruffy. Dusty. Urine smoulders in the corners and dribbles over the stars. People accost you, offering to guide you to a specific star — for a fee of course. Dudes, the neighbourhood is not quite the ticket:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

We headed for the hills:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

At least from up there, the city has a smoggy allure:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

We did a guided tour of the Warner Bros. studios. This worm highly recommends the tour. Lasting about two hours, it’s fast, interesting, professional:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Here’s one of the “backlots” inside the studio grounds. The buildings are just facades, customisable for each film that is currently being shot:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Here’s the ambulance bay for “ER”:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

And here’s what it looks like from the other side:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

The Warner Bros. tour includes a visit to the museum. The TC, bless her cotton socks, was entranced by the garments and other accoutrements from various films. Here’s Harry Potter’s Ford Anglia:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

See the green screen on the left of the above picture? Tour participants are invited to pose in front of it for a photograph. Later, photographic wizardry replaces the green background with an image of the Gryffindor common room. Naturally, the TC and TC-once-removed could not resist that opportunity. Here’s the somewhat predictable result:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Television afficionados will recognise this room:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Yes, it’s Central Perk from “Friends”.

The Warner Bros. tour guide also took us round the props warehouse. This worm found it the most interesting part of the tour. So much stuff, some genuine and some look-alike. Here’s a massive Egyptian statue nestling up to a stunning Tiffany lamp. The studio has had the lamp squirreled away for years and has only recently discovered its value. It’s one of two genuine matching Tiffany lamps:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Here’s an even more valuable standing lamp. It’s made of Baccarat crystal and recently valued at 3 million dollars. The studio has its twin too, worth the same amount of moolah:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

In the evening we made it to Universal Studios. Glitz and glamour were more in evidence here:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

The guitar in the distance marks the entrance to the Hollywood Hard Rock Café. Inside, a car turns languidly above your head, chief raft in a flotilla of memorabilia:

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

Hobnobbing with the stars in Hollywood

If you’re in Hollywood around Halloween, go to the Universal Studio Halloween Horror Night. We did.

That’s all for today dudes.

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