October 15, 2014
Hollywood is a place with a lot of history – and history often equals hauntings. Whether you’re looking to get scared this Halloween season, or just wanting to pick up that perfect costume piece, Hollywood has got you covered! Here is our guide to Haunted Hollywood.
- Dearly Departed Tours, 6603 Sunset Blvd.: Founded by Scott Michaels, an authority on the Dark Side of Hollywood, Dearly Departed Tours is a multimedia Hollywood bus tour. Cases like Manson, Janis, Whitney and Michael, and lesser-known celebrities with even more spectacular exits are covered, peppered with crime scene photographs and audio clips (including 911 calls). The tour has been featured on the E! Show Hollywood Death Trip, Anthony Bourdain’s The Layover and dozens more, and the FX’s American Horror Story even paid tribute to the tour. The collection of celebrity death memorabilia on display in the Gallery includes the pink suitcase Jayne Mansfield packed the night she died and Rock Hudson’s deathbed. Just for Halloween, Dearly Departed Tours offers an escorted journey through spooky film madness, with a Halloween tour devoted to the famous horror film locations around Hollywood and Pasadena. Experience the horror of films like Zombieland, Scream 2, Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956), Michael Jackson’s Thriller (1982), Ed Wood (1994), A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984), and more: the amazing Victorian houses featured in American Horror Story and Charmed. You’ll also see home where horror kings Peter Lorre and Bela Lugosi died in real life and receive a copy of Bela’s actual death certificate.
- Museum of Death, 6031 Hollywood Blvd.: The Museum of Death is a self-guided tour, lasting approximately 45 minutes to an hour, but those who can stomach it stay as long as they like. See original crime scene and morgue photos, among other morbid memorabilia.
- The Hollywood Museum, 1660 N. Highland Ave.: Featuring actual movie props and sets. For Halloween, visit the Dungeon of Doom for a spotlight on scary horror movies and TV shows: Take a walk through Hannibal Lecter’s jail cell (Silence of the Lambs), say hello to Chucky and his bride… if you can find them (Child’s Play), and watch your back as you pass by Freddy Kreuger (Nightmare on Elm Street). See original props, costumes, and Hollywood-story from Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, including the Macabre Mobile, her custom vintage 1958 Ford Thunderbird, and her original red velvet sofa, custom gowns and skeleton “Bone Phone” Telephone Prop.
- Hollywood Wax Museum, 6767 Hollywood Blvd.: Pictures taken at the museum (specifically around the Last Supper and Crucifixion models) have mysterious “orbs” in the pictures.
- Hollywood Roosevelt, 7000 Hollywood Blvd.: Probably the most haunted hotel in the city. Marilyn Monroe and Montgomery Clift are said to haunt the hotel, and there was an unexplained cold spot in the Blossom Room. The Roosevelt also hosts an annual Halloween party – headlined this year by DVBBS.
- Knickerbocker, 1714 Ivar Ave.: Formerly a hotel and now a senior living facility, D. W. Griffith died under the lobby’s grand chandelier. The séance to contact the spirit of magician Harry Houdini on the tenth anniversary of his death was held on Halloween on the rooftop (yes, he died on Halloween). Marilyn and DiMaggio used to stay here – some say they saw Marilyn’s image in the ladies room.
- Pantages, 6233 Hollywood Blvd.: Reported to be haunted by Howard Hughes, who had an office there. Some say you can even catch a whiff of his cigarettes.
- Boardner’s, 1652 N Cherokee Ave.: Actress Elizabeth Short is said to have had her final beer here before leaving and becoming The Black Dahlia. There is said to be a dark presence in the ladies room; this was also Ed Woods’ old watering hole.
- Hollywood Toys & Costumes, 6600 Hollywood Blvd.: Reputed to be the oldest and largest costume store in Los Angeles, Hollywood Toys & Costumes is like an entire department store devoted to costumes. The make-up counters are busy in October as customers learn to do their Halloween make-up. Need a wig? They’ll create a custom one for you.
- Iguana Vintage Clothing, 6320 Hollywood Blvd.: This vintage clothing store is brimming with costume options.
- Hollywood Wigs, 6530 Hollywood Blvd.: Supplier of every type of wig, hairpiece, extensions and falls you could possibly imagine.
- Bizzy B, 6548 Hollywood Blvd.: Looking to go a bit risqué this season? Try this legendary shop, or some of the other lingerie shops along Hollywood Boulevard between Cahuenga and Cherokee, such as Maya Shoes , Playmates and Stage Hollywood.
- Panpipes Magickal Marketplace, 1641 N. Cahuenga Blvd.: The nation’s oldest occult store, serving “the light and dark” since 1961. Potions and lotions, ceremonial candles, statuary, jewelry and divination aids of all kinds.