7 fun facts about the HOLLYWOOD sign
The iconic Hollywood sign has loomed over the epicenter of American movie making since 1923, and its 87 year history includes plenty of interesting tidbits.
- The sign read HOLLYWOODLAND from 1923 to 1949.
- Each letter originally stood 50 feet (15 m) and 30 feet (9.1 m) wide high, but renovations in 1978 resized the letters to 45 feet (14 m) tall and anywhere from 31 to 39 feet (9.4 to 12 m) wide.
- In 1932, Broadway actress Peg Entwistle committed suicide by jumping off the letter “H.”
- Alice Cooper led the 1978 donation drive to remodel the famous sign. The shock rocker contributed $27,000 of his own money to the project, and bought an “O” in memory of Groucho Marx.
- Hugh Hefner donated to the restoration of the “Y” with a $27,777 contribution.
- In the 1940s, the sign’s official caretaker, Albert Kothe, destroyed the “H” after crashing into it while driving drunk.
- In January 1976, following the passage of a state law decriminalizing marijuana, vandals altered the sign to read ” HOLLYWeeD.”
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