Video: The History Of Sunset Boulevard, From East To West
Streets by VICE takes a look at Sunset Boulevard, both past and present, from east to west. "Those who only know Los Angeles through film and TV tend to imagine a world of fame and affluence, but in reality, L.A. is a vast, diverse and complicated city," host Karley Sciortino begins, as she prepares to explore Sunset Boulevard from start to finish in the 20-minute episode of Streets by VICE. The video is part of VICE's larger Guide to Los Angeles.
The video starts with the origin of Sunset Boulevard, in 1781 at Olvera Street, near Union Station, then moves through Echo Park, where they discuss the history of gang violence and the neighborhood's eventual gentrification.
Lifelong resident Echo Luna said that the changes have caused the neighborhood to lose flavor.
"Vegan and organic. It's all good for us in theory, but boy, it is boring," she says.
They then move to Thai Town to talk to L.A. Times food critic Jonathan Gold at Jitlada about Los Angeles' not-so-boring cuisine, before checking out Amoeba Music in Hollywood. There, Sciortino talks to musician and L.A. native Sydney "Syd tha Kyd" Bennett from Odd Future and The Internet.
They also discuss prostitution with Norma Jean Almodovar, who started out as a police officer in the 70s, and then eventually left to become a sex worker herself. She said that many times, police officers would agree to not arrest a sex worker in exchange for a "freebie," which often took place in Griffith Park.
"That's what one of the reasons I left. I realized I was working for the blue mafia... I'd rather do something more honest, and I can't think of anything more honest than doing sex work," she said.
Then, they head to Beverly Hills where they talk to a member of the paparazzi. "That's where One Direction usually gets their tattoos," he says, while cruising down the street. They also find a velvet Bentley!
They also the Sunset Strip's Whiskey a Go Go, and finish at the ocean to look back at the history of surfing.