- December 27: the history and film history of Greystone Mansion in Beverly Hills, built in the 1920s by Edward Doheny. The article focuses on There Will be Blood and the manse's bowling alley, but mentions Austin Powers, and The Big Lebowski. Imdb lists 50 movies and TV shows filmed there--from Small Talk in 1929 through Forever Amber, Jerry Lewis' Disorderly Orderly, Ghostbusters, X-Men , and so on. This picture is from the City of Beverly Hills' website, which owns the property.
- January 2: the film history of City Hall, from it's first appearance in a 1928 Lon Chaney movie through the current National Treasure Book of Secrets and beyond.
- January 3: a piece about the follow-the-actors play performed for six years at Greystone Manor in Beverly Hills--shades of Tamara! The Manor is based on the murder-suicide scandal of Doheny's son, for whom Greystone was built.
- Another January 3 article about the toppling of Hollywood's oldest tree, with pictures from 1923 showing the building that the tree just missed as it fell--the Hollywoodland Realty Company office.
And since I'm told it's unhealthy to dwell completely on the past, "Watch This Space" in the L.A. Times Magazine of January 6,2008 features the four new public squares installed in our fair city:
- The L.A. County Museum of Art expansion designed by Renzo Piano (who designed the Pompidou Center in Paris), opening soon
- Wilshire-Vermont Station (one annoying website, I admit)
- Nokia Plaza
- The new LAPD Headquarters (Pictures at CurbedLA and the Times, but nothing showing the public plaza itself.)
The article by Christopher Hawthorne is not full of hope that our future public places are being any better planned, executed, or utilized than previous unsuccessful attempts to build community gathering places in Los Angeles (other than shopping malls).