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My LA To Z: A.C. Lyles
The industry staple and hallowed producer, who’s been at Paramount Pictures since 1928, has built his career on creating TV Westerns like “Rawhide” and “Deadwood.” Here he tells us exactly how he takes in a film, where to find great prime rib, and what Hollywood history means to him.
I’m 95 and have been at Paramount for 85 years—it’s a short résumé. I met [Paramount founder] Adolph Zukor when he visited a movie theater where I worked handing out flyers. I bought a one-way ticket to California and he hired me for the mailroom. Going to my office on the Paramount lot is a big thrill. Every day I have the pleasure of seeing a building with my name on it. I’m working on several projects, and whichever one works, we’ll do. If there’s one that doesn’t come to fruition, you move on to another one. I’ve been lucky to have done so many movies and TV shows that I’ve loved.
Bel-Air Country Club
I enjoy going to the Bel-Air Country Club on Saturday nights. I always see a lot my buddies there. I’m very partial to it even though I’ve never had time to learn how to play golf—and I’m not going to start now!
Lawry’s The Prime Rib
The way Lawry’s serves dinner is wonderful. They bring the kitchen to the table. There are different cuts of beef cooked rare, medium, and well done. It’s a wonderful place and the waiters and waitresses have all been there for years and know all the regulars.
TCL Chinese Theatre
I always walk around the forecourt of the Chinese Theatre. The studios campaign to get stars in there—it’s a high honor. I could tell you stories about everyone there. That place is packed at two o’clock in the morning and it’s the big Hollywood mecca.
Lucy’s El Adobe
Lucy’s is patronized by a lot of people at Paramount and has been there for as long as I can remember. I like the best restaurants, but I go to a lot of regular places, too.
ArcLight Cinemas, Hollywood
The Arclight is wonderful. I see almost every movie made and have never walked out on a picture in my life. My wife knows never to get popcorn because I don’t want any disturbances. If there’s a fight on the screen, I get black and blue.
The Hollywood Sign
I love to go up to the Hollywood sign and realize the great history of our business. It’s a big thrill. I know a way up there that somebody showed me once.
The Pantages Theatre
I see all the stage presentations at the Pantages. I knew Mr. Pantages, and he had a big circuit for vaudeville. I’ve seen so many shows there.
The Hollywood Heritage Museum
Mr. DeMille came here to make The Squaw Man in 1913. He stopped off in Arizona, but it rained for four days straight so he came here. Someone told him about an old barn in this orange grove and that’s where he made the movie that started Paramount. Now it’s across the street from the Hollywood Bowl and is the Hollywood Heritage museum.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
They have a theater where the sound, the projection, the seating, and the facilities are wonderful. It just has everything for a perfect theater and I love to see movies in the best possible surroundings.
The Hollywood Museum
I was impressed with everything they’ve done at the Hollywood Museum in the old Max Factor building. It’s a museum about the history of Hollywood, including the makeup of Max Factor. It’s filled with wardrobe, makeup, and everything else that goes into movies.
Photographs courtesy (in order): (1) facebook.com (2) facebook.com, (3) facebook.com, (4) facebook.com, (5) facebook.com, (6) facebook.com, (7) wikipedia.org, (8) wikipedia.org, (9) facebook.com, (10) wikipedia.org, (11) facebook.com