Actors, Screenwriters, Directors, Novelists, Journalists who live or lived here
Birth of Venice and early years
Actors, Screenwriters, Directors, Novelists and Journalists with Studio,Office or Hangout in Venice including even single sightings
If it's on this page, I got it from at least one source. Corrections of factual errors are welcomed. Write to the webslave.
Pamela Anderson reportedly gave $100 to a grungy boardwalk musician in Feb 2001
Barbara Avedon in 1981 was walking along the boardwalk, brainstorming a story with another writer, when they saw a kid of eight or so choking on a hot dog. Avedon just picked him up off the bench and Heimlich-maneuvered him.
Sarah Bernhardt performed in Auditorium on Pier in May 1906, several years later stayed for two weeks and is said to have rented a whole floor of the King George Hotel
Mel Blanc once owned a hardware store in Venice
Joan Blondell went to Venice High
Lisa Bonet founded a community center called Heart (Hearing Each other And Responding Together," dont ask what happened to the "o")
Carl Borack producer of The Big Fix, partly filmed in Venice. Had an office in the Fern Violette building.
Beau Bridges went to Venice High
Bud Browne Venice beach lifeguard, first serious producer of commercial surfer genre movies
Mark Burnett TV producer sold T-shirts on the boardwalk for two years.
Bob Burns actor who from 1953-54 appeared as Major Mars for Revell Models in interactive skits involving members of the audience.
Nicholas Cage is reported sharing a $750 bottle of wine at a restaurant called Chaya Venice. (April 2002)
Jim Carrey seen at Chaya Venice
Chers mother People magazine once pictured her skating with her 21-years-younger boyfriend. You go, girl!
Paul Ciotti wrote article "Love in Venice" which became movie Ted and Venus
Mickey Cohen a gangster, but we don't have a separate category for them
Roger Corman - producer Bought what had been the Hammond lumber yard on Main Street in late 1970s, made it into the Concorde-New Horizons studio. Used some Venice locations in films. The Other Venice Film Festival 2006 honored him with a special program as a Local Maverick.
Buster Crabbe Olympian swimmer, played Tarzan, hung out at Brooks Ave Lifeguard Station in 1920s
Walter Cunningham astronaut, went to Venice High
John Cusack New Crime Productions, office on Rose Avenue
Clarence Darrow famous defense attorney came to Venice in 1911 for Macnamera Brothers case
Marion Davies liked to escape from her strict sugar daddy and have fun at the old Pier
Yvonne de Carlo actress, first big break was winning Miss Venice Beach in 1938 and/or Venices 1941 Mardi Gras beauty contest
Drea de Matteo is only one of the many celebrities who have been photographed on the boardwalk.
Andy Devine actor in Westerns, "discovered" while working as Venice Beach lifeguard, Brooks Ave. station in 1920s
Bill Dobbins photographer, especially of bodybuilders; TV and video producer
Robert Downey Jr. sighted at Hydrant café; arrested in 2001 at Baldwin Motel on Washington Boulevard
Isadora Duncan is said to have spent some time in Venice, at least enough to draw inspiration from the ocean waves
Jack Elliot once sang at On the Beach Bookstore
Mike Farrell actor, seen at art opening
Kevin Federline photographed strolling on the boardwalk with Britney Spears
Jane Fonda in early 80s, brought son regularly to playgroup
Hunky Tom Forman, actor and director, was staying with his parents in Venice in 1926, getting over a nervous breakdown, when he shot himself in the heart.
George Freeth the part-Polynesian man who brought surfing to Southern California and instituted a volunteer lifeguard station on Venice Pier
Lynette "Squeaky" Fromme has told how, after being kicked out by her father, she hitch-hiked to Venice because of its beatnik past. As she drooped on a bench staring at the ocean, a gnomelike man approached and offered sympathy. He turned out to be Charlie Manson and, to give one last outing to a lame cliche', the rest is history.
Clark Gable in the old days frequented the roller coasters etc. with Carole Lombard, Marion Davies, Charlie Chaplin and the gang.
Mel Gibson In March of 2004 it was reported that he spotted two kids spray-painting graffit, and jumped out of his car to scold them. One boy recognized the actor, and he shouted, "Yes I am, and don't ask for an autograph!"
John Gifford actor, Gas House habitue
Whoopi Goldberg seen shopping in Venice
Joe Gordon once played jazz at On the Beach Bookstore
Elliott Gould attended the Pacific Jewish Center.
Heather Graham habitue of the Rose Cafe
Joseph Hansen poet founded Venice Poetry Workshop
Christopher Haun TV writer
William Randolph Hearst occasionally accompanied the dizzy Marion Davies to the pier for recreation. Her memoirs say "One time we got caught way up on the top of the Ferris wheel .Once we went down in the diving bell It was a beautiful thing until the man said, 'I think the cable is broken." But it was only Hearsts son playing a joke.
Gossip columns report that Anthony Hopkins was accosted in the Venice Starbucks by a female fan who grabbed his posterior and whispered something suggestive. He verbally rebuffed her, she retreated, and the other customers applauded. (October 2001)
Janice Joplin visited the Gas House and Lawrence Liptons place at 20 Park and once sang at On the Beach Bookstore
Jack Kerouac visitedLawrence Lipton in 1959
Kipper Kids Brian Routh and Martin von Haselburg: Dadaist comic performance artists. Photo of them taken at Saint Charles Hotel in 1975. Theyre in The Forbidden Zone.
Actor Matt LeBlanc is only one of the many celebrities who have been photographed on the boardwalk.
Filmmaker David Lebrun, who was associated with the Hog Farm commune, and Helena his wife, were part of the light show troupe called Single Wing Turquoise Bird. Rol Murrow says, "David prepared some incredible mandala-like film loops...which were one of our signature elements."
Sheryl Lee named her cat after a boy acrobat she met on Venice Beach
Carole Lombard hung out at the pier having big fun on the rides with other Hollywood friends
Myrna Loy went to Venice High, was model for statue out front, was also on a float with the Spirit of Venice there in 1922 Pasadena Rose Parade
Mama Cass once sang at On the Beach Bookstore
Vaughn Marlowe bookstore owner in mid-1960s
Amilda Kiyoko Tachibana McIntyre actress, dancer, musician, astrologer, and one-time mistress of a serial killer, lived very near the beach (See Black Dahlia Avenger by Steve Hodel)
W. M. Morton balloonist and parachutist, stunt performer at the beach in Kinney era
Bobby Muller founder of Vietnam Veterans of America
Bill Murray seen at Chaya Venice
Eddy Mussick stunt flyer who performed amid fireworks, 3000 feet above the Pier, in the Kinney era
Pola Negri was one of the movie stars who came to Venice for cheap thrills in the old days.
Charlie Newman artist, Gas House habitue
Anais Nin visited Lawrence Lipton and generally hung out with the writing and indie film crowd
The New York Film Academy, which has a West Coast branch, takes its students on a field trip to Venice for the "grit." (2002)
Beatrice Owens was Venice High student in 1924, went on to become star of vaudeville, stage, and screen
Art Pepper once played at On the Beach Bookstore
Peter Paul and Mary visited Gas House and Lawrence Lipton at 20 Park
Keanu Reeves seen at Chaya Venice
Mickey Rourke surfed Venice Beach in 2003
Arnold Schwarzeneggar, was photographed by People magazine in his Venice office with his custom-made American flag. For many years he was seen on the beach and in the area. There is a controversy about an interview he gave in 1977: "Bodybuilders party a lot, and once, in Golds .there was a black girl who came out naked. Everybody jumped on her and took her upstairs not everybody, just the guys who can fuck in front of other guys."
Sean - juggler/political commentator, heard on boardwalk in 1979. One of his characters was Auntie Abortion
Richard Shea- real-estate mogul built castle, lost castle and millions in 1929 stock market crash; his drowned body was found near Venice Pier
Norma Shearers sister-in-law killed herself with a shooting gallery target pistol on the pier
Felix Silla actor -worked as Commodore P.O.P., a mascot for the Pacific Ocean Park amusement park
Britney Spears made first music video at Venice High, Nov. 2004 bought a restaurant in Venice (JJ Chill) for her dad
Bruce Springsteen just after reading Born on the Fourth of July, he met the author Ron Kovic by pure coincidence, and Kovic took him to the vet center in Venice to meet some of the guys.
Frank Stites stunt flyer in Kinney era
In the Olympic Torch Relay of June 2004, Sylvester Stallone carried the torch through Venice
Sharon Stone shopping
Barbra Streisand attended the Pacific Jewish Center in Venice.
Fay Tichner won 1915 Bathing Suit Contest, spent prize money treating her Venice friends to a big party at the Strand Cafe. Went on to acting career, including a movie about the Bathing Suit Parade, which was filmed here
Jean-Claude Van Damme (frequented the Rose Cafe)
At the old Taurus Tavern, surrounded by the music of Sam Taylor, Michael Ventura met Jan, the "raw-boned Okie girl" he would impulsively marry within days. A piece of writing inspired by that, "A Dance for Your Life In the Marriage Zone," is amazing. Its in the collection Shadow Dancing in the U.S.A.
Chris von Goetz literary agent
Harry Von Zell went to Venice High
Bruce Wagner creator of Wild Palms sighted on the boardwalk
Andy Warhol made his first movie here
Johnny Weissmuller (Tarzan) hung out at the Brooks Ave. Lifeguard Station in the 1920s
Actor Tom Welling appears wet from a dip in the ocean in a magazine photo, wearing jeans and an orange A&W Venice Beach tee shirt.
James Whitmore Jr. improvisational acting therapist with kids in Oakwood in the Sixties
Alex Winter actor, writer, director
Venice-based J. David Wyles tells the Herald Examiner (for an article about the superstitions of screenwriters) he writes only on Stewart Hall legal pads, and only with Pentel Rolling Writer pens. (April 1982)
© 2004 - 2012 Pat Hartman