LATEST NEWS[May 2013]
Continuing the Hollywood Sign's 90th anniversary celebration, a new slideshow has been posted titled "Moments in Hollywood Sign History: The 1978 Rebuild" … »[April 2013]
As part of the 90th celebration of the Hollywood Sign, the Hollywood Sign Trust will be featuring "Legends and Lore of the Hollywood Sign" slideshows on the home page. … »[March 2013]
The Hollywood Sign is proud to be in Argo, which just won the Academy Award for Best Picture. The Hollywood Sign is the hardest working actress in Hollywood appearing in over 150 movies,… »[February 2013]
Dick Van Dyke was honored with the SAG Lifetime Achievement award. He starred in a 3D movie about the legend of the Hollywood Sign caretaker who replaced the light bulbs at the Sign when… »
Category Archives: The Sign on Television
The Sign in the Movies: A Towering Hollywood Star
AN OPEN CALL FOR ALL FILM BUFFS!
We've listed over 70 films, TV shows, video games and music videos below that have featured the Sign, but there may be more. If you spot a cameo by the Sign that isn't on our list, please email us with details about the sighting right away.
If we add it to our list, and you'd like credit for your discovery, we'll put your name in the listing. You'll be a part of Hollywood Sign history!
A 50-foot pop culture icon can only get so far in Hollywood without catching the eyes of "movie people." So it should come as no surprise that the Hollywood Sign has been in its fair share of films – many more, in fact, than celebrated A-listers like George Clooney or Cate Blanchett.
Though it is such a towering Hollywood star, it is little known that the Sign was a bit of a child prodigy, appearing in its first feature-length motion picture (1935's "Hollywood Boulevard ") at the tender age of 12. Despite this promising debut, the Sign had to wait until it was almost 50 years old before it started landing regular callbacks! The reason for the snub? While the vast majority of American movies were filmed in Hollywood before then, very few were set in Hollywood – so the Sign's presence would have been a dead giveaway. Hollywood, at least in the mainstream imagination, was a place where movies were made, not a place populated by real people, dramas and stories.
It wasn't until the Sign wowed the industry a bit part in 1970's Beyond the Valley of the Dolls and with its thrilling stuntman appearance in 1974's "Earthquake" that the calls started pouring in. From 1935 to today, the Sign has appeared in, according to our count, well over 70 films, television shows, and video games.Through the years, it's starred alongside the likes of Warren Beatty, Marlon Brando, Charlton Heston, Ava Gardner, Johnny Depp, and Jim Carrey. The Sign has co-starred in more than one film with four different actors: Jennifer Connelly ("The Rocketeer" and "Career Opportunities"). Charlize Theron ("The Italian Job" and "Mighty Joe Young"). Mike Meyers ("Austin Powers in Goldmember" and "Shrek II", and Donald Sutherland ("The Italian Job" and "The Day of the Locust").
True, the Sign may have had an opportunity to "rub letters" with some of the biggest names in Hollywood, but it's also had its share of career challenges. For one thing, the Sign has struggled to move beyond its typecast role as a signifier of massive-scale destruction, having been destroyed no less than 10 times on screen – by everything from earthquakes and global warming, to a giant gorilla and, most fearsome of all, John Belushi.While the roles haven't always been great, the Sign has added something to every film it's been in, whether it's being used to quickly establish a setting, deliver a visual punch-line, or add a chilling note of "reality" to a depiction of disaster or a future gone awry.
Created by Dan Schneider.
Starring Victoria Justice, Leon Thomas III, Matt Bennett, Elizabeth Gillies, Ariana Grande, Avan Jogia, Daniella Monet.
The Sign plays a part in the opening credits as Victoria Justice sings. Look for the Sign several times in the background and near the “Hollywood Arts” performing arts high school. You can also see the Sign in several quick edits between scenes in the show.
(Contributed by Byron Wozgen)
The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien (2009-2010)
Starring Conan O’Brien.
The opening credit sequence for this ill-fated late night variety show, which depicted a whirlwind tour of the most important landmarks of Los Angeles, included a nighttime tracking camera shot of the Sign from behind silhouetted against the LA skyline.
(Contributed by Duff Ferguson)
Starring Shenae Grimes, Tristan Wilds, AnnaLynne McCord, Ryan Eggold, Jessica Stroup , Michael Steger, Lori Loughlin.
This latest version of a venerable television franchise includes many passing references to the Sign, and the cast uses the Sign as a backdrop for a documentary film they are shooting. In addition, Season 3 sees one character (Jasper) throwing himself off the “H” and narrowly escaping death.
(Contributed by Yvanne Kennedy)
Nip and Tuck (2003-2009)
Created by Ryan Murphy.
Starring Dylan Walsh, Julian McMahon, Joely Richardson, John Hensley, Roma Maffia, Kelly Carlson, Jessalyn Gilsig, Bruno Campos, Valerie Cruz.
At the end of season 4, main characters Dr. Christian Troy (Julian McMahon) and Dr. Sean McNamara (Dylan Walsh) sell their successful, Miami plastic surgery business and relocate to the glitz and glamour of Hollywood.
The Hollywood Sign is shown in a most spectacular fashion, with great aerial shots of both it and a couple of far-away shots of the city below. The two doctors are shown simply hanging around the Sign. All this is set to Kool & the Gang’s ‘Hollywood Swingin’.”
(Contributed by Lucinda Perez)
Starring David Anders, Kristen Bell, Santiago Cabrera, Jack Coleman, Tawny Cypress, Dana Davis, Noah Gray-Cabey, Greg Grunberg, Robert Knepper, Ali Larter, James Kyson Lee, Masi Oka, Hayden Panettiere, Adrian Pasdar, Zachary Quinto, Sendhil Ramamurthy, Dania Ramirez, Leonard Roberts, Cristine Rose, Milo Ventimiglia.
In the 2007 season’s fourth episode, titled “The Kindness Of Strangers,” Claire and a date fly over to the Hollywood Sign at night and sit on top of the letter “H.” Claire purposefully falls off the “H” to test and see if her date will swoop in and rescue her (he does, thankfully).
(Contributed by Byron Wozgen)
The Hills (2006-?)
Starring Heidi Montag, Brody Jenner, Justin Bobby, Lauren Conrad, Whitney Port.
The opening credit sequence includes a helicopter tracking camera shot of the Sign with an added glowing effect.
(Contributed by Marcel Pazzin)
The Girls Next Door (2005-?)
Starring Holly Madison, Bridget Marquardt, Kendra Wilkinson, Crystal Harris, Kristina Shannon, Karissa Shannon, Hugh Hefner.
The opening credit sequence of this long-running behind-the-scenes look at Hefner’s famous Mansion includes a shot of the Sign. The Sign is also shown repeatedly in several episodes, including one where the girls ride horseback to the Sign.
(Contributed by Anna D.)
Created by Scott Silveri and Shana Goldberg Meehan.
Starring Matt LeBlanc, Andrea Anders, Paulo Costanzo, Jennifer Coolidge, Drea de Matteo, Miguel A. Núñez Jr.
The Sign appears repeatedly in this Friends spin-off, usually during scene switches. Joey makes reference to the Sign in the first episode, where he comments that from his apartment he can see the “Ollywoo” sign — since his window has no view of the H or the D.
(Contributed by Luke Timmons, Glasgow Scotland)
The Bachelorette (2003-??)
Starring Chris Harrison, Ali Fedotowsky.
Created by Mike Fleiss.
In episode #2, during the bachelorette’s first date, she takes one lucky guy right down to the Hollywood Sign where they sit, talk and canoodle as the sun goes down, taking in that famous Los Angeles view.
(Contributed by Melissa Marie Monroe, Los Angeles, CA)
Futurama (1999-2003, 2008-??)
Starring Billy West, Katey Sagal, John DiMaggio, Tress MacNeille, Maurice LaMarche, Lauren Tom, Phil LaMarr, David Herman.
Created by Matt Groening.
In ‘That’s Lobstertainment’ (Episode #3, Season #8), the Planet Express crew flies to Hollywood to revive the career of Dr. Zoidberg’s formerly famous comedian uncle Harold Zoid. The Sign still stands proudly over LA, but the Capitol Records building seems to have been repurposed as a “Swap Meet.”
(Contributed by Michael McQuarrie, Vancouver, BC)