Laurel & Hardy Hit The Skids

County Pan

During their ride home from the hospital in County Hospital (1932), Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy (well, their stunt doubles) skid at a wide intersection beside a Gothic-windowed auto garage.  The zig-zag detailing remains on the garage wall.

County Hospital Slide - Tilden

This unusual intersection also appeared in the Hal Roach “Taxi Boys” comedies Thundering Taxis (1932) and What Price Taxi? (1932).  The curb in the latter film says “TILDEN AVE,” identifying the spot as where Washington Place, Tilden Avenue, and Washington Boulevard meet.  The two skid stunts depicted here were likely staged at this spot (red oval below) because the intersection was unusually wide, providing an extra measure of safety.

Tilden MapThe Culver City Rollerdrome skating rink (yellow box, left) stood near the wide intersection, and for a time a mini-golf course (green box) stood on the corner.  The Rollerdrome (1929-1970) was a local landmark for decades.  The mini-golf course sign appears in the movie frame below.

The Culver City Rollerdrome and the Miniature Golf sign

The Culver City Rollerdrome stood by the short-lived mini-golf course (notice the Golf sign)

Below, these vintage aerial photo details show the large skating rink beside a flat patch of earth where the mini-golf course stood.  The garage with the Gothic windows stands near the corner – the skid area marked with a red oval.  (I came upon these photos at pages 12 and 144 of MGM:Hollywood’s Greatest Backlot, Steve Bingen’s best-selling illustrated history of the studio’s outdoor sets and stages).

Tellefson Park stands today on the site of the former Rollerdrome and mini-golf course, and the corner garage still services cars.

(C) Hal Roach Studios, Inc.

About these ads
This entry was posted in Laurel and Hardy and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Laurel & Hardy Hit The Skids

  1. Chris Bungo says:

    I’m glad you devoted a post to this John. And thanks also goes to Dave Lord Heath over in the UK for giving us the first composite pic of L&H and the intersection which got us started on “the hunt” for this location. Your help with this is very much appreciated!

    • Thanks Chris – this spot had been on my radar for quite a while, but the group efforts of you, Dave, and the others on StudioBackLots, prompted me to give it a further look. As is often the case, an obscure movie often helps to solve a more famous movie.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s