Amongst the files that our faithful correspondent recently open-sesame-ed out in literal troves from the Ali-Baba-esque locality on Ramirez Street known to the world as the City Archives and Record Center was a most interesting, most singular fax to Councilwoman Jackie Goldberg from a serial candidate for every random political office in California and generally all-round attention-seeking loony named Steve Mozena, self-styled “Chair of HOLLYWOODLAND.” On the handwritten fax cover sheet1 Steve declaims:
Jackie, I’m looking for support for my project. Martin Sheen and Slyvester [sic] Stallone like the idea of “Hollywoodland” Let’s see if we can work together and make this a reality. Steve
Go ahead! Read it! You know you want to! Turn the page now to find out what this is that we’re gonna make a reality! And also what does it have to do with the BIDs…
Here’s why he’s doing it, whatever it is:
WHEN I CAME TO HOLLYWOOD 5 YEARS AGO, I FELT A TREMENDOUS SENSE OF LET-DOWN AT WHAT I SAW. RIGHT THEN, I FORMED A COMMITMENT INSIDE TO HELP RESTORE THE IMAGE OF HOLLYWOOD, IF IT WAS IN MY POWER TO DO SO. LOTS OF PEOPLE HAVE SUCH PASSING FANCIES, BUT MINE STAYED WITH ME…
And what did Steve propose to do to heal his “…tremendous sense of let-down…” you ask? Why,
It’s to convert Hollywood Blvd. between La Brea and Vine into a theme park to be known as “HOLLYWOODLAND.” … You will enter through a studio gate and subsequently under the rainbow from “The Wizard of Oz” and exit Vine Street through impressive life-size Egyptian columns like those found in “Cleopatra.” The street will be paved with “gold,” as well as the sidewalks being changed into the yellow brick road with, of course, the Hollywood stars.
We will have the Globe Theatre, a museum for legends of yesteryear and a museum for actors & actresses. There will be a petting zoo, dedicated to famous pets from your favorite films and a museum of romance for famous couples who’ve captured our hearts.
On the street, there will be jugglers, musicians and life-size statues of our favorite stars. Of course, there will be plenty of shops and restaurants. A huge undertaking, you say? Absolutely.
And the craziness and the dreams go on and on. It would have been circa 1990 that he first felt the “…tremendous sense of let-down…” about Hollywood. Before the BID and its constant drumbeat of “bad old days in Hollywood, bad old days in Hollywood” was even a twinkle in BID-mother Jackie Goldberg’s gimletty little eye this guy Steve Mozena was out there also seeing Hollywood as a fixer-upper rather than a soulmate, an “I can change her” kind of girl rather than the love of his life. And this is what Hollywood is to the BIDs as well. They never love her for herself, our lovely Hollywood, but only for what they can make her into. But, as we’ve been saying for almost a year now, they don’t know how to make her into anything good. All their big ideas, their big plans, don’t make Hollywood better. At the very best they make her different. Usually they make her worse.
Hollywood has been famous for a century for attracting the young and the beautiful with whispered promises of fame and fortune which, on arrival, turn out to be mostly casting couches and clips on the cutting-room floor. After that, so goes the B-movie script, those young dreamers find they just want to be loved for who they are, and go looking for the Prince or Princess Charming who will love them as they so richly deserve to be loved. And so does Hollywood herself, although by now she’s so tarted up and used up by businessmen, dug up by plowmen, that who would even want her? None of them along the line know what any of it is worth.
- Faxes. We were about to type something about how we kinda missed the 1990s. Then we realized that we did not miss them. Not in the least.
Image of whatever-the-heck-that-is is released under the CC BY-SA 2.0 and we got it from the usual suspects. Picture of Martin Sheen all the same terms. Petting zoo picture is released under the CC BY-SA 2.0 by its creator jinglejammer, and is available from Flickr. Image of Supergirl and Snow White is via Flickr, is released under the CC BY-NC-ND 2.0, and is by Flickr user maximillian_schaffhausen.