Since 1960, the Walk of Fame has attracted tourists who want to see the stars. About 10 million people visit the 18-block walk annually, and it celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.
Hollywood business leaders came up with the Walk of Fame idea in the 1950s as a way to beautify and promote the area.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the walk’s plans called for 1,529 of the biggest stars of film, stage, radio, television and music to be immortalized in the concrete using brass set in salmon-colored terrazzo stars surrounded by black backgrounds. As of March 2010, The Times found more than 2,300 stars on the walk, representing 2,100 individuals or organizations.
Anyone can nominate a candidate, but the celebrity must agree to be considered. And if chosen, a star (or their fan club) has to pay a $25,000 fee for the ceremony.
Surprisingly, there are many big names in Hollywood who do not have stars on the Walk of Fame. There are numerous reasons for this. A celebrity must be nominated, selected and agree to the ceremony — in addition to paying for the ceremony. You won’t see stars for Dustin Hoffman, George Clooney (What?), Julia Roberts, Robert Redford, Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Michael Douglas, Sean Connery, Angelina Jolie or Denzel Washington. Clint Eastwood doesn't have a star either, but you can see his handprints in the courtyard in front of Grauman's Chinese Theatre.
Gene Autry is the only person to have stars in five fields: film, TV, radio, live performance and music. I just learned that Autry was the original owner of TV station KTLA.