Hollywood is just a small portion of the sprawling metropolis of Los Angeles, but it is a name known worldwide as the film capital.
"And that's what dreams are made of," said Sam Spade, (Humphrey Bogart) in the film "The Maltese Falcon."
These words ring through the ears of those that are seeking fame and fortune, hoping for their big break or standing at the arched gates of Paramount Pictures gazing upon the famous Hollywood sign ready for their close-up.
Hollywood is alive during the daylight hours with people and cars moving and bumping into each other like the blood cells coursing through their arteries.
Tourist from all walks of life, carrying cameras, filter in and out of shops and museums, taking pictures of the star-studded sidewalks and the wannabes who work the sidewalks of fame, hoping to get a glimpse at stardom.
|Tourist have their picture taken next to the star of Muhammed Ali|
The names of famous celebrities, both living and deceased, are immortalize in brass and terrazzo on the sidewalks of Hollywood Boulevard, and Vine Street . Near the grand staircase in the Kodak Theatre mounted on the wall is the star of Mohammed Ali, the only star that does not rest on the sidewalks.
"I heard that he didn't want his star to get walked on," said Ana Martinez, vise president of media relations and the producer of the star ceremonies.
"His star was the only one not created on-site, but at the factory and presented to Ali on an easel."
At night the city morphs into a different animal like a werewolf searching for prey. Music from night clubs that were once hidden away in light, come alive with music that flows out into the streets. Men and women now line the walkways waiting for their turn to be granted access into the clubs. The select few are given passage by the gatekeepers that guard the entrances.
The men are sharply dressed wearing mostly black clothing, standing with women wearing tight black outfits, who are constantly pulling at their clothes up and down to cover their barely-hidden womanhood.
In the early morning hours the air grows still. The heartbeat slows down and allows for a resurgence of vital nutrients that supplies the people with energy. Television and film production trucks move through the quieter city streets to locations unknown.
There's a calming in the morning air while the city sleeps.
"The morning hours are like the breath before the plunge," said Jacob Ontiveros, an employee at the Hollywood and Highland complex.
The shops are empty but the work remains as street cleaners work to clean the city before the giant awakens. People are asleep in their homes and beds, even those that have found a place in the recesses of a building or the ground, who huddle in their sleeping bags or layers of clothing.
|A man and woman sleep on the sidewalk of North Gower St in Hollywood|
Tinseltown is the place where dreams can come true and is also the same place where shattered hopes and despair fill the air like the smell of wet moldy clothes, discarded cigarettes and deteriorating cardboard.
Beyond the glimmer and glamour there is life that struggles everyday to survive with continuing hopes that one day they too will make it in the place called Hollywood.
|The lights of Los Angeles glow bright|
At a glance;
Contact the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce at (323) 469-8311
Or online at www.hollywoodchamber.net/index.php
As of March 2011, there are 2,434 stars on the Walk of Fame, with Director Zuban Mehta being added in February. The stars are made of terrazzo and brass stars are embedded at 6-foot intervals over a combined 2.4 miles. There are five categories of the entertainment industry are, Motion Picture, Television, Recording, Radio and Live Theater.