Hollywood  

The First Hollywood Movie

Historic In Old California honored but ignored

By Concerned Citizen
Published on LatinoLA: May 17, 2004


The First Hollywood Movie


On May 6, 2004 a unique event took place. The unrecognized movie "In Old California" finally received proper recognition after 94 years.

The movie was made by Biograph Company back in 1910, three years prior to Cecil B. DeMille's film the "Squaw Man" in 1913.

"In Old California" is a short melodrama about Spanish and Mexican California, and about a young girl's decision that would change her life, forever. The film was thought lost, but was found. The monument was dedicated with a Congressional Award from Congressman Henry Waxman, a Senatorial Award by Senator Shiela Kuehl, and Mayor James Hahn even proclaimed May 6th "Biograph Day" in commemoration of the historical significance of this ground breaking film, which not only founded Hollywood for the movie industry, but also proved how important Latino culture is to the beginning of Hollywood and the movie industry.

The monument was made by Forever, Inc. (Hollywood Forever Cemetery) and proudly stands almost six feet tall, made of black imported granite in the shape of a 1910 camera, commemorating this historic movie and what is its meaning to history and ethnic culture.

Limos arrived with many of the young Hollywood set, and Hollywood VIP's. After this event, the film was exclusively premiered at the Beverly Hills Film Festival and another gala party followed.

With all of this however, and the significance of this monument, there was no known even mention in Hollywood Reporter, Variety, or many of the so-called entertainment trade papers. There was true press there, but a handful. The silence was deafening. How could such a cultural landmark be ignored by certain media? My question is, does Hollywood want to recognize its Latino roots in the movies? The answer is clear. This has happened again, and again to the Latino community. Our political friends such as our Mayor and Congressman recognize the diverse cultural heritage Hollywood and Los Angeles offers. But in my opinion, our Latino heritage for these certain press organizations is just not important enough.

One can be proud though to know, and see the monument at 1718 North Vine Street, though it stands alone as a citadel to where it all began, and how it all began, with pioneering spirit and ethnic diversity. The monument stands for the truth no one can hide.

About Concerned Citizen:
Concerned Citizens. Compromised of showbusiness industry associates that have quite a bit of experience in the movie indistry, and appreciate the history and cultural diversity of Hollywood.




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