WHEN YOU WISH UPON A STAR
Before you start congratulating me, what you see above is not my star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. This was benevolently computer imaged for me by a good friend, who I suspect felt sorry for me. He knew I didn’t have my own star. For displaying this fake star, I’ll probably get hauled into jail by honorary Hollywood Mayor Johnny Grant and treated to my own free celebrity mug shot. I would welcome the honor of joining the Hollywood Mug Shots of Fame.
I’m on this subject because our daughter Jennifer Weatherly (the former #1 country singer in Switzerland) was visiting Barbara and I from her home on Maui. At the same time, three of her Geneva girl friends (ages 19 to 21) were visiting LA and Jennifer wanted to be in LA to show them the sights.
One afternoon while they were out visiting world famous Hollywood Boulevard, Jennifer called me on her cell. The girls had asked if I had a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. They wanted to go see it and were quite disappointed when I said no. I’m sure that, in their eyes, my fame went down several steps on their stairway of the stars.
I’ve been asked that question so many times over the years. When I answer “no,” the next question is always “Why?” And, my answer is always the same, “Because no one has ever offered me one.”
Now don’t you go feeling sorry for me. I’m not the only one with a half–century in Hollywood without a star. Clint Eastwood comes to mind. Clint Eastwood is a huge movie star, an Oscar winning director and has been around for as long as I can remember. Here’s a puzzler: Gene Autry has five stars. Pat Boone has three, and there’s a star for Bugs Bunny, Godzilla, Kermit the Frog and Woody the Woodpecker. So why is there no star for Clint Eastwood? You’ll have to ask him. He may say the same as me. No one ever offered him one. Or, heaven forbid, he turned it down.
Several years back I was invited to Casey Kasem’s Hollywood Star celebration party the day he was honored. If anyone deserved a star, it was Casey. But, man, he had invited over 500 of his closest friends to enjoy a gigantic feast and drinks inside a huge tent set up right on the Boulevard. Celebrities milled around while several rock bands played and Casey’s financial advisor sweated up a storm. All I could think of was, “Please don’t offer me a star. I can’t afford it.”
Are you aware that when you are offered a star you must agree to (1) show up for the ceremony (2) celebrate in style and (3) pay $25.000. Helloooo!
Look. Having a star on the walk of fame is a great honor. And most stars do not have to pony up the $25,000 themselves. A movie, TV studio or radio station usually pays the tab to promote an upcoming event. But, I’m perfectly happy with the fact that my HEAD is on display in the Hollywood Wax Museum storage room.
At one time, of course, my head was connected to a body and displayed on a Lloyd Thaxton Show set in the middle of the museum. When the Lloyd Thaxton Show went off … so did my head. You might say it was like” The Tale of One City.”
Want a kick? The next time you’re walking along and enjoying the stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, take a quick turn into the Hollywood Wax Museum. Ask someone if you can hold Lloyd Thaxton’s head. I did it once and it was a fantastic feeling.
By the way, no one recognized me. Most did recognize the head I was holding. The wax figure being more life-like than I am.
When you run into a celebrity (there are so many of them in Hollywood you can’t help but run into one), instead of asking if he or she has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, ask if they have their head in the “The Hollywood Wax Head Shop of Fame.”
You might be surprised at what an elite group we “headies” actually are.