A fascinating landmark, the Hollywood Forever cemetery is the final resting place of hundreds of Hollywood’s founders and stars.
Founded in 1899, the cemetery was an integral part of the growth of early Hollywood and Los Angeles. Daeida Wilcox Beveridge, called the “Mother of Hollywood”, gave the town its name and rests in the Cathedral Mausoleum with other original Hollywood families. Paramount Studios was built on the unused southern half of the original Hollywood Cemetery site, where the studio is still in operation today.
The cemetery of choice for Hollywood’s great studios owners, as well as writers, directors, and performers, Hollywood Forever bore witness to the birth of the motion picture industry and is the resting place of early film pioneers like Jesse Lasky and Cecil B. DeMille. The Cathedral Mausoleum is home to the first true international star of the silent film era, Rudolph Valentino, who is still celebrated every year by hundreds of fans at his annual memorial service. Hollywood Forever Cemetery was listed on the National Register of Historic Sites in 1999 and was designated a city and state landmark. In recent years, the cemetery has welcomed a new generation of Hollywood legends to its grounds. Judy Garland now rests in her own pavilion. In the Garden of Legends Johnny Ramone is memorialized with a life size statue. Resting nearby is fellow band member Dee Dee and also Soundgarden lead singer Chris Cornell. The cemetery itself continues to have starring roles in many films and television series. Recent appearances have included Insecure, American Horror Story, and Ray Donovan. Under the leadership of co-owners Tyler Cassity (President) and Yogu Kanthiah (CFO), and the Director of Cultural Events, Jay Boileau, Hollywood Forever has become one of LA’s most celebrated cultural centers, welcoming families and visitors to concerts, plays, comedy shows and films. Summer outdoor screenings each summer gather thousands on the lawn, to watch classic Hollywood movies projected onto the side of a mausoleum. Hollywood Forever’s annual Dia de Los Muertos is a day-long festival featuring gorgeous altars, Aztec dancers, a ritual procession, and five performance stages. The celebration is the largest of its kind in North America and is credited with helping to bring this tradition to greater acceptance and celebration in the United States.
Hollywood Forever also celebrates life with an outdoor summer concert series on the Fairbanks lawn hosting performers including Lana del Rey, Sigur Rós, Bon Iver, Sufjan Stevens, and Miguel. Though Hollywood Forever is known for its celebrity residents and cultural programming, the facility is still a fully functioning cemetery, funeral home, and crematory, serving the needs of thousands of Los Angeles families annually.
Hollywood Forever and Gucci
Hollywood Forever Cemetery has a special connection to the House and Alessandro Michele, after he attended a party tribute to Johnny Ramone in 2016—hosted by the musician's widow Linda Ramone—the location inspired pieces from the Spring Summer 2017 collection, which featured embroideries referencing the Hollywood cemetery. Later, a sunglasses collection inspired by 70s color and form, detailed with all-over crystals, was named ‘Hollywood Forever'.
The landmark is also a setting in scenes from the video of the new Gucci Guilty campaign—featuring Academy Award-winning actor Jared Leto together with new testimonial, multi-platinum singer songwriter Lana Del Rey, to launch worldwide in January 2019.