The Hollywood Walk of Fame is a sidewalk along Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles California . The sidewalk is embedded with more than 2,000 five-pointed stars featuring the names of celebrities honored by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce for their contributions to the entertainment industry. The stars recognize an eclectic mix of actors, musicians, directors, producers, musical and theatrical groups, fictional characters, and others for their contributions to the industry.
There are two exceptions to the trademark “star” shape of the monuments. The Apollo XI mission to the Moon is commemorated in four identical, circular “moons” containing the names of the astronauts (Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Edwin E. (“Buzz”) Aldrin Jr) the date of the first Moon landing (7/20/69) and the words ‘ Apollo XI ‘.
Created in 1958, the Hollywood Walk of Fame has become a tribute to performers and others within show business. Honorees receive a star based on achievements in motion pictures, live theater, radio, television, or music. Many honorees have received multiple stars for contributions to separate categories. In 1978, the City of Los Angeles designated the Walk of Fame as a Cultural Historic Landmark.
Each year, an average of 200 nominations are submitted to the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce Walk of Fame Selection Committee. Anyone, including fans, can nominate anyone active in the field of entertainment, as long as the nominee or his or her management is in agreement with the nomination.The Walk of Fame is maintained by the self-financing Hollywood Historic Trust. In order for a person to get a star on the Walk of Fame, he or she must agree to attend a presentation ceremony within five years of selection, and a $30,000 fee must be paid to the Trust. The fee is typically paid by sponsors such as movie studios and record companies, as part of the publicity for a release with which the honoree is involved.
Each star consists of a terrazzo comprising a pink five-pointed star rimmed with bronze and inlaid into a charcoal square. Inside the pink star is the name of the honoree engraved in bronze, below which is a round bronze emblem indicating the category for which the honoree received the star. The emblems are:
- a motion picture camera – for contribution to the film industry
- a television set – for contribution to the broadcast television industry
- a phonograph record – for contribution to the recording industry
- a radio microphone – contribution to the broadcast radio industry
- twin comedy/tragedy masks – contribution to live theater.
The original Walk of Fame had 2,500 blank stars. A total of 1,558 stars were awarded during its first sixteen months. Since then, new stars have been added at the rate of approximately two per month. By 1994 over 2,000 of the original stars were filled, and additional stars were added to extend the Walk west past Sycamore to La Brea Avenue.
According to a report by the market research firm NPO/Plog Research, the Walk attracts about 10 million visitors annually and has played an important role in making tourism the largest industry in Los Angeles .