Saturday, February 16, 2019

Hollywood Research #4 Frances Howard Goldwyn-Hollywood Branch Library




1623 Ivar Avenue, Los Angeles

We started researching our new book GAME TOWN, in Hollywood, on Hollywood Blvd. Since this was a fact-finding "mission" we needed loads of background information on Hollywood (the real everyday Hollywood). We started with the Hollywood Branch Library.
          The Hollywood Regional Library opened in 1986 after an arson fire destroyed the original structure. The Samuel Goldwyn Foundation built the new library, eliminating entirely, the dark and musty quality of old-style libraries. With plenty of light, modern design, and lots of open space. The new library has plenty of airy, comfortable reading spaces for patrons. 
          The original Hollywood library opened in 1906 in two rented rooms on what was then Prospect Ave. (now Hollywood Boulevard). A project of the Woman’s Club of Hollywood, the library’s first permanent home was built in 1907 by Andrew Carnegie at Ivar and Prospect. It quickly outgrew its space by 192 and moved to its present location. After a 1982 fire, only 20,000 of the library’s then-90,000 book collection was salvageable.
          It features special collections which are focused on Hollywood and the local community. The special collections room is filled with books, scripts, and archival collections that directly relate to the film and television industry


AHA Moment

We were surprised how normal everyday life was in the 1950's Hollywood, California. We found books with photos of film stars talking to their neighbors over the backyard fence (They did not look staged). The trauma of the intrusive Hollywood Freeway was all over the newspapers including a scandal. Hmmm!!

Friday, February 8, 2019

Hollywood Research #3 The PIg 'n Whistle

Hollywood Research #3

The Pig 'n Whistle
6714 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028

We started researching our new book GAME TOWN, in Hollywood, on Hollywood Blvd. Since this was a fact-finding "mission" we stopped at things we came across that looked interesting. After scouring the Grauman's Egyptian Theatre, we turned the corner and found the Pig 'n Whistle Restaurant and Bar. It wasn't open yet so we looked in the windows and walked around. It was fascinating, the decor and that wooden pig was eye-catching.
          The Pig 'n Whistle was originally a chain of restaurants and candy shops, founded by John Gage in 1908. 

          The Hollywood location of the Pig 'n Whistle was first opened in 1927] next to The Egyptian Theatre. The building housing the new restaurant featured carved oak rafters, imported tiles, artistically wrought grilles and balcony and paneled fresco paintings. It was frequented by celebrities such as Spencer TracyShirley Temple and  Howard Hughes
          The original Hollywood location closed down after World War II and its distinctive wooden furniture, decorated with hand-carved whistle-playing pigs, was sold.
          By the late 1990s, the location housed a fast-food pizza restaurant, and all that remained of the original tenant was a bas-relief pig on the front of the building. In 1999, British restaurant operator Chris Breed remodeled the building, recovering the spectacular original ceiling ornamentation, and re-opened the restaurant.
          The restaurant name originates from two Old English words, piggin, a lead mug, and wassail, a wine drunk during the yuletide.
          It still remains a staple of Hollywood serving family style food and a great bar.

AHA Moment

It would have been the perfect place for Sky and a suspect to meet for lunch as he gathered info on the case. Unfortunately, the Pig 'n Whistle was not open for business in Spring of 1957. So we decided to make mention of the place during interviews our PI has with suspects.

Friday, February 1, 2019

Hollywood Research #2 Grauman's EgyptianTheater

Research #2

Grauman's Egyptian Theatre

6712 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028
          We started researching our new book GAME TOWN, in Hollywood, on Hollywood Blvd. We came across the Egyptian Theatre and decided to take a look. The theatre was getting ready for a Red Carpet affair that evening in the long walkway to the entrance. The set up for the stars and press was completed (including the red carpet) and under heavy security watch.

          The theatre was mentioned in SLIVERS OF GLASS not far from the murder scene and brought back memories of a few dates Skylar Drake had with his late wife, Claire before they were married

          The red carpet set up was perfect to include in our cover design. So we took several pictures of it.

AHA moment

Looking at the entrance to the theatre, we got the idea to begin the novel with our main character, Skylar Drake, PI, and his partner, Casey Dolan, ending a job for the studios at one of the award ceremonies ( Oscars, Emmys) and somehow connect with a few stars. Now to research where and when the awards were held in 1956 and who won.