Ford was pretty tight-lipped about the specifics of our two-day adventure in Hollywood, so I was psyched to see that Day Two involved a set visit to the Disney Golden Oak Ranch. Ford has this promotion going on with On The Lot "Contestant 51" Colin Padden, who's played by Steve Siddell. In typical Hollywood small-world fashion, it turns out that Steve is good friends with an FSUer I went to film school with, and in fact, bungy jumped off a bridge with an actress wearing a wedding dress from my thesis film short.
Here's a pic of me with Colin/Steve from later in the day:
I started the day driving with Denis, who was totally loving L.A. It was so great to spend the first part of Day Two on a set. We watched them shoot out the scene they were working on when we got there, and then some precision driving shots. We moved to a railroad before lunch - which we ate on set with the cast and crew. The executive producer was really awesome and friendly. After lunch, I stayed for a bit longer with Emmet, Josh and Jeremiah, so we got to see one long shot of the railroad and meet the director. I hated that we had to leave when we did, but we had to get on to the next bit, the Road Rally, which I was looking forward to.
On the way home, I drove 3 Ford peeps back to the Roosevelt and kept almost missing exits. I'm sure that was exciting!
For the Road Rally, I hopped in the back of an Escape with Celeste and Megan. Megan and I were bushed, so Celeste drove the whole thing. I felt like a bad Angelino later, since she was the visitor, but even though I feel confident about Laurel Canyon now, Mulholland is a bit of another thing. Then again, maybe I would have woken up more if I'd driven some, and then Celeste could have seen more. She'll just have to come visit again! We had fun anyway, methinks. Each blogger was given a Kermit before we left, because Kermit is the "spokesfrog" for the Ford Escape Hybrid.
Our first stop was a view of the Hollywood Sign. We were on a photo scavenger hunt, so this pic represents vehicle in the shot, me & the sign. There's potential points for creativity, too. I hung the camera off the hood for this angle, but I had Megan from Hill & Knowlton press the button, because I've no idea how to use my timer.
Next stop, Mulholland Drive. Vehicle in the shot, LA in the background (not a good day for views, sadly). Points also for peeps in the vehicle and potentially for creativity.
Then, Rodeo Drive. Goal was to take a pic with the sign, be creative, and to get shopping bags in the shot. I was too tired to accost strangers to be in my pic, or to get bags from a shop. So I had Celeste snap this pic which features a Rodeo street sign in the background, 3 shopping bags behind me, and I believe even a Ford that's just turned onto Rodeo.
I also took a pic by the Via Rodeo sign. Notice the complete dearth of shopping bags.
Next stop, Pink's Hot Dogs. I hadn't been there since my first year in L.A., and I enjoyed my hot dog and Bubble Up thoroughly. (I heart Bubble Up.) We decided to tailgate in the Ford Escape to get at least one hot dog in the shot, a Pink's visor in the shot, vehicle in the shot, and to be all creative.
Last stop was Hollywood where we were supposed to snap Kermit on his star, our name on a star, celeb impersonator in shot, tourist in shot, and potential points for creativity. One guy got Darth Vader to pose with Kermit on Kermit star, so I think they've got the creativity point in the bag. Anyway, here's my Hollywood pics:
We ended the day with dinner at Vert, followed by drinks at the Tropicana Bar back at The Roosevelt. Even though I was a little full from hot dogs, I had a really delicious dinner and desert and a great time with the bloggers at my table. Here's me with Stefan and Alex from Elephant Larry:
Thursday morning I woke up at the Roosevelt, got dressed and packed and went off to work. And now, I can hardly believe that it's Sunday night. The past couple weeks have been a whirlwind, so I'm definitely in constant prioritization mode.
It was an amazingly fun two days, and I just enjoyed meeting everyone so much! Thanks, Ford and On The Lot for hosting us.