Posts Tagged ‘studio audience’

Lights Camera Action!

March 23, 2012

Hollywood is more than a neighborhood.  The magic you know as “Hollywood ” actually takes place all over the Los Angeles area from Burbank, to Pasadena to downtown LA and beyond.

If you’re in the LA area and want to watch the magic in the making, here’s what to look for:

Hollywood magic takes many magicians from actors to makeup to lighting to catering.  Signs like these will be posted at freeway off ramps and major intersections.  Rarely do they say exactly what is being filmed but you can follow the signs just as the members of the cast and crew do to see Hollywood at work.   This particular photo shows the signs of 2 productions!

You will know when you find them by the number of large, white trucks and thick cables everywhere.  Every shoot has security, but we stood across the street one day in Pasadena and watched a popular television series shoot some scenes with the show’s leading stars.

Except in the height of summer when most of the television shows go on hiatus, there are TV shoots happening all around the area.  Even in summer,  commercials, music videos and movie productions are every day occurrences in the LA area.

Most of the studios are in Burbank rather than Hollywood so a lot of outdoor shooting happens in Burbank and nearby Glendale or Pasadena.   Its also easier to get permits to shut down a residential street off the beaten path than in the heart of LA.

The exception is at night and weekends when the business day is done.  Then its not unusual to see bright lights shining in the windows of the largely vacant buildings awaiting renovation throughout downtown.  On a recent weekday evening we saw 2 separate productions filming scenes on the streets of downtown LA.

Long Beach is another popular home for popular shows such as Dexter and CSI Miami where the harbor doubles as Miami when mixed with Hollywood magic.   A website called “Seeing Stars” lists the actual addresses of some of the iconic scenes from shows such as Dexter.

If you want to peek behind the curtain to see the wizards at work you can go on a studio tour, be in the studio audience for one of your favorite shows or follow the signs to catch a glimpse of Hollywood magic in the making.


Going Hollywood

May 20, 2011

Planning a trip to LA this summer?  It’s a great destination.  Easy to get to.  Lots of free and low cost activities.  Plenty of budget places to stay and eat plus it sounds more interesting to friends than going to Omaha.

Much of what tourists know and typically want to see centers around Hollywood.   No visit to LA would be complete without a stop at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.  Their website has a ton of great information to make the most of your visit but I would recommend actually seeing a movie there.  This is the link to the showtimes.  We’ve seen 2 movies there in the main “premiere” theatre – a great way to sit, cool off and pretend you are part of a red carpet event – after all, it is classic Hollywood.

Want to do more than put your hands and feet in the prints of the stars?  You can be in the studio audience when they tape some of your favorite shows.  Most days there are hawkers in front of Grauman’s giving out tickets to tapings.  While tickets are always free, it’s usually a good idea to start long before you get to LA to get into your favorite show.

First, does your show of choice use a studio audience?  Game shows, talk shows and some sitcoms do.  Dramas do not.  Start with the website of your favorite show and look for “Be in the Audience” information.  Here is the link to tickets for Dr. Phil’s show.

Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune audience tickets are here.  Keep in mind, this is to be in the audience – not on the show.  Only The Price is Right selects contestants from the audience.

Shows do not tape year round.   Games shows and talk shows tape more frequently but even they go on hiatus for a couple of weeks to a couple of months each year.  Many shows are on hiatus from June till the end of August.  If seeing a show live is an important part of your LA vacation, check the show’s website before you book your trip!

As soon as you know your travel dates, fill out the on-line request form and wait for an email.  Most shows accept requests up to 2 months in advance.  It’s okay to fill out requests for multiple shows and see which ones you get – you can always call to cancel if you have two for the same day but trying for more shows improves your odds of seeing something.  Just don’t put in multiple requests for the same show!

What about those hawkers in front of Grauman’s?  Are they legit?  In a word. Yes.  I once got tickets to The Price is Right for a party of 4 in just this way.  If you didn’t get tickets before you arrived, it’s certainly an option.  I’ve also used a host of websites to get tickets to everything from Jay Leno to Deal or No Deal.

Preference is always given to filling requests through the show’s website or studio’s guest relations desk  but if you don’t have enough lead time, the 3rd party sites are viable options.

Next week I’ll share some inside information to help you get the most out of your studio audience experience!

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