The Golden Age of Hollywood

Round picture: Joe and daughter Julie Ackerman. Collage by Brenda Lopez

Tracking Her Father’s Footsteps

Capturing images of Hollywood stars was photographer Joe Ackerman’s ardour. He operated in a Media panorama that was a bit extra harmless and fewer intrusive and maybe much less hungry for the intimate particulars of well-liked radio, tv and movie stars and their lives. Over 4 many years, Ackerman would accumulate greater than 5,000 autographed images from established performers to the up-and-coming stars.

Recently, San Pedro resident, Julie Anderson, self-published a shiny hard-bound 192-page ebook as a homage to her father’s ardour.


To curate this ebook out of 5,000 images, Anderson selected essentially the most reputably recognizable actors from the golden age of Hollywood together with the likes of Bing Crosby, Judy Garland, Lena Horne, Clark Gable and others — the listing simply goes on. 

“I took those people knowing how important they were to film at that time,” Anderson stated. “My father did get a lot of other actors. There were also actors who starred in a lot of different movies but never really became as popular.” 

Ackerman’s household was effectively conscious of his passion however it wasn’t till Anderson revealed The Golden Age of Hollywood that they understood the depth of his ardour. 

“He was very private,” Anderson stated of her father. “We didn’t even know a lot of the things that he had done such as going out to premieres and stuff like that. A lot of it, he did when he was younger.” 

Anderson, who was the second eldest of 5 youngsters, stated her father wasn’t the sort of one that would exit and inform all people the whole lot. She stated he felt there was extra of his passion that he did for his personal enjoyment. 

But he didn’t hold this passion only for his personal enjoyment. He started presenting slideshows that includes his images and the tales he picked up alongside the way in which as he captured his images. 

“For lots of the locations he had put within the manuscript the place he did a slideshow and he introduced this to completely different teams within the space, throughout the Nineteen Sixties, ‘70s and ‘80s. And at that time there were quite a few different places where the stars would go, they would go to the Brown Derby, and they would go to Hollywood Boulevard … they go shopping,” Anderson explained. “They do normal things like everybody else. So back at that time, they were more at ease with being out in the public. Not like today’s Paparazzi.” 

Anderson stated her dad made it very clear to his household that when he sought an autograph, he could be well mannered … be a gentleman, and respectful of the celebs and say to them, “May I have your autograph?” If they stated no, he understood. 

Anderson shared an oft-told story of a single interplay between her father and four-time Oscar- successful actress Katharine Hepburn. Anderson defined that her father would go to numerous occasions he knew Hollywood actors would attend, like charity tournaments. And so at a charity tennis match, he encountered Hepburn who was coming off one of the tennis courts.

“My dad went up and asked her if he could take her picture. She said, ‘Sure, no problem.’ My dad then said, ‘Well do you want to put your tennis shoes down?’ Because she was holding her tennis shoes. ‘I thought maybe you’d want to put them down and not have them in the picture.’ The actress looked at him and said, ‘No, absolutely not. These are my lucky tennis shoes and they’re going to be in the picture.’”

Anderson defined that the story turned the quintessential attribute of Katharine Hepburn for Anderson.  

“She was very sweet and everything,” Anderson stated. “So [my father] enjoyed that interaction.” 

Anderson stated of her father’s interplay with the “titan of the skies’’ and Hollywood producer, Howard Hughes, that he didn’t contemplate him necessary sufficient to acquire his autograph. Anderson surmised that it needed to do with the timing by which her father encountered Hughes, whose years as a trailblazing aviator had been lengthy behind him, even when he owned an airline in his namesake. 

“[By the time my father met him] Howard Hughes was a recluse. He had called my dad to find out if he could get some hearing aids because he was having problems with his hearing, and he just wanted to make sure … because he was a germaphobe and all that… that nobody would touch any of the hearing aids. My dad couldn’t say that, no, no one’s going to touch these [hearing aids].” 

So Hughes ended up not shopping for any.

Hearing aids to be used on movie and tv phases was the idea of one of two companies Ackerman would construct that may tie him to movie and tv manufacturing in Hollywood.

Ackerman had patented listening to aids that may enable administrators to talk with actors as they’re performing and based an organization that allowed him to lease sound tools to manufacturing groups round Hollywood. 

Anderson defined that as a result of her father had patented sure listening to assist expertise, he additionally began working with completely different sound studios within the movie and tv trade utilizing his earpiece expertise that may enable the director or whoever to speak to the actors with out stopping the movie from rolling. They might simply inform them stuff by this earpiece which later turned the ear items they use now for music movies and live shows. 

“My dad, he worked on a lot of movies back in the ‘80s and ‘90s and 2000s … namely movies where they had a soundtrack. And so they had to incorporate that,” Anderson defined. “So they work with Bette Midler on The Rose. He worked with Robert De Niro on the musical drama New York, New York. He worked on TV shows like Seinfeld and so that brought it full circle for him. So he really enjoyed it.” 

Anderson relied on what she discovered in her school historical past programs about black and white movies.

“The talkies silent film and then it progressed, to color, with sound quality and everything,” Anderson defined. “I needed to point out that development, the images that it began out with, individuals who had been from the silent period all over [the talkies]. And then it become colour. 

Anderson additionally did it this manner as a result of she needed to comply with go well with The Wizard of Oz, when the film began out in black and white and progressed to paint. 

San Pedro has at all times celebrated its mark on  Hollywood. This Los Angeles Harbor Area city has two movie festivals and scores of movie credit as website areas. Its final remaining theater constructed at first of the golden age of Hollywood nonetheless stands in its downtown core. At least with the Los Angeles Harbor International Film Festival, we’re reminded of the celebs that made the movie world go spherical throughout the golden age of Hollywood. In the case of Joe Ackerman’s household, the golden age of Hollywood is handed down from era to era as household lore, permitting Ackerman’s reminiscence to stay on.

To buy the ebook, go to

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