If Hollywood has one must see, Grauman's Chinese Theatre is it. Completed in 1927 after 18 months of construction, this opulent asian-styled movie house opened with the premier of Cecil B. DeMille's “The King of Kings.” Conceived and bankrolled by Hollywood mainstay Sid Grauman, this somewhat hokey and certainly quirky theater is quintessential Hollywood. Set right on the Walk of the Stars, its most interesting feature are the concrete blocks outside that hold over 200 famed stars dating back to the 1920s right up to the present. D was a little too enamored with Johnny Depp's.
It is still a working movie house and the price is a fairly typical $10 for the privilege. You can also do a tour of the building for $5. Walking around outside and checking out the footprints is free.
I can't imagine going to Hollywood and not seeing Grauman's Chinese Theater. Probably the most famous theater in the world, it opened to much fanfare in 1927 when thousands of fans lined the street to catch a glimpse of movie stars and celebrities. The theater premiered Cecile B. DeMille's "The King of Kings".
The Chinese temple styled theater itself is 90 feet tall. Two red columns hold up a bronze roof (photo #2). A 30 foot stone carved dragon sits in the middle of the columns. The two giant Heaven Dogs guarding the entrance are the original ones brought from China (photo #3). Authorization actually had to be obtained from the U.S. government to import the Chinese artifacts used in building the theater.
In 1968 the theater was declared a historic-cultural landmark and even today it is the most sought-after theater in Hollywood for movie premiers.
Of course the most famous aspect of the Theater is the Forecourt of the Stars. Handprints and footprints of starts from Marilyn Monroe (photo #4) to George Clooney (photo #5) to Tom Hanks to Bruce Willis (photo #1) are all here as well as imprints of Betty Grable's legs and Jimmy Durante's nose. It is said that thousands of stars have graced the theater at premiers and ceremonies, but only a select few have been asked to leave their imprints. The first two were Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks on April 30, 1927 and the last was Michael Caine on July 11, 2008 (ceremony #196). You will see plenty of people around measuring their own hands and feet against those of the stars.
Grauman's has 6 theaters if you want to take in a movie. They also offer tours 7 days a week. It's advised to call in advance for tour times and prices (323-463-9576).
Check here for a map of the forecourt: www.manntheatres.com/chinese/forecourt.php
Check here for upcoming premieres: www.manntheatres.com/premieres/upcoming.php
The theater is located next door to the Kodak Theater and the Hollywood & Highland Center where you can shop and eat. ** The Hollywood & Highland Center is also a good spot from which to see and photograph the Hollywood sign.
Heaven Dogs were first introduced in 117 B.C. and were believed to ward off evil spirits. They were widely used to protect the Ming Tombs in the interior of China during the Ming Dynasty (1403-1643). They are still used as decoration and to ward off evil.
The world famous Grauman's Theater was designed by Sid Grauman and architect Raymond Kennedy. It was started in January 1926 and was completed 18 months later at a cost of $2,000,000. Grauman had to obtain special permission from the US Government to import the temple bells, pagodas, stone Heaven Dogs, and other artifacts used in the construction and design of the theater from China. The grand opening of Grauman's Chinese occurred on May 18, 1927, with the debut of Cecil B. DeMille's “The King of Kings,” which was preceded by "Glories of the Scriptures," a live prologue devised by master showman Sid Grauman.
On 30 April 1927 Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks placed the first hand and footprints in the cement in front of the theater. Since then about 180 celebrities have done the same. You can compare the size of your hands and feet to those of stars like Marilyn Monroe and John Wayne. There are also always people dressed like celebrities walking around outside. They will pose with you; but expect a tip. They usually want the tip before posing. Grauman's also attracts an interesting assortment of locals and tourists, attracting over 4 million visitors each year.
"It sure beats the local picture palace full of feckless layabouts back home"
"Looks like a giant Chinese take-away to me"
"Well this 20's concoction is the real McCoy, they had to get all sorts of licences to bring in bells and whatnot to decorate the theatre"
"There must have been thousands of premieres and awards through here over the years"
"They also have their own kind of 'walk of fame' with footprints and handprints of some really big stars from the movies on the forecourt"
"Where are you off ?"
"I'm off to see if any curvy actresses have added their best features to the concrete"
"God, men they are so predictable."
"Do you think you will ever be immortalised in concrete?"
"With my gob, perhaps only as part of the concrete bridge support for a new freeway"
"sooner than you think, perhaps"
Grauman’s opulent, awe-inspiring presence and history has been a cornerstone of Hollywood for over 75 years. The first night we arrived we wondered why the red carpet was down in front .,It turned out to be the premier of Blood Diamond and later all the stars turned out to walk the carpet into the theater.
We got to go into the lobby for $2.00 the next day ( special offer at Christmas the money goes to charity)
There are always lots of characters in front of the theater if you don't get inside.
If you're looking for this place from the magazine articles with all star's footprints and names written in concrete, you can find this in front of Mann's Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard. It is also a place from where you can be picked up to see a tv broadcast as an audience member. Tickets and transport are usually free.
The Chinese Theater is the famous theater where the major film celebrities have made impressions of their hands and sometimes signatures in the cement leading up to the main entrance. You'll also find tons of activity outside of Graumans, as many street performers make a living by dressing up as famed movie roles, including Batman, Jack Sparrow, Edward Scissorhands, etc. Inside the Chinese Theater, you can actually see current films- it is an operable theater!
The Chinese Theater is a great place to go on your first day in Hollywood, especially if you've never been in this area of California before. You'll see a mix of people - tourists, locals, constumed people posing for tips, the rich, the poor, and everyone in between. You can also catch movies in the theater (which I didn't do). The theater only shows one movie at a time, so call ahead to see about tickets. Apparently the screen and sound system are excellent. There is a theater next door, Mann's 6, which has more movies playing.
The famous hand and footprints you hear about are right in front of the Chinese theater. There are many famous signatures, including Star Wars characters and Whoopi Goldberg's hair imprint. Careful when you're looking, though - you might be standing on one that someone else is eyeing. Its almost a surprise that you're still allowed to walk all over them and put your hands and feet in the imprints. I have a feeling they'll be roped off in the future.
Check out all the footprints in front of Grauman's Chinese Theater.
The Matrix Reloaded was playing at the theater while I was in town, but all the shows were sold out, so I saw it a Mann's Multiplex - in the Hollywood and Highland complex - instead.
You have to see the Graumann's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood. It is beautiful and very interesting. In front of the theatre you can see foot prints and hand prints of many famous actors and celebrities. You can even see their signatures in some cases.
In 1927, Norma Talmadge and Douglas Fairbanks stepped in a wet concrete slab outside the theater. It was the first of many ceremonies carefully planned out by Sid Grauman (the owner) Now I know that Silvester Stallone doesn't have a big hand, in contrary of what I knew. More than 180 celebrity prints are there. Expect many people and tourists. We didn't see anyone famous.
I don't think anyone seems to go into the theater from I saw. People are more interested in the stars' handprints and the Walk of Fame at Grauman's.
You could spend ages just looking at the star's handprints! You see loads of characters hanging outside the theatre, like Freddy Krueger but they're not affiliated with Grauman's at all.
the icon of Hollywood. This is where all the Major hollywood Theater Film, Debuts were made up to the 1960's. Formerly knowed as Mann's Chinese Theater, It reverted back to it's Original Name of Grauman's Theater in 2002. The grand opening of the theatre was on May 18, 1927 and it was the most impressive theatre opening in motion picture history. A riot actually broke out as fans tried to get glimpses of the movie stars and other celebrities as they arrived for the opening. It is visited by more than four million visitors from all over the world every year and is the most sought-after studio in Hollywood for studio premieres. Every time there is a premiere, the streets are overrun by fans trying to get autographs and pictures of their favorite celebrities as they arrive for the red carpet walk-ins. The Hollywood Walk of Fame runs right in front of the theatre as well so people are always looking down at the stars and honoring their favorites. The imprints of more than 150 of Hollywood's finest hands and feet, such as Marilyn Monroe and Humphrey Bogart, are cast right in the front entrance of the theatre (also known as the forecourt). It's a fun way to the preserve and respect the long fantastic story of Hollywood's entertainment industry.
Make your what to Grauman's theater. Once there you will inevitably get board sticking your hand in dried up concrete. You will also get sick of looking at a giant theater that you could never afforded. So now it's time to get your picture with a MONEY hungry WAKkO! You can find some of them along the way, when following the stars on the ground, but you will score your favorite characters in front of the theater. Now they work on tips, and the proper edict is to tip them before the picture. they get pissy if you wait till after. I'm sure they have been burned before. You will see everyone from elvis, Lord of the Rings dudes. So good luck and have fun.
IF YOU LIKE MY POST PLEASE GIVE POSITIVE FEEDBACK, THANKS.