LOS ANGELES (CNS) - The curtain went up today on the newly spruced-up Hollywood sign, which is once again visible from much of the city.
During the refurbishment, workers removed all existing paint from the sign's nine 45-foot-tall letters, which were then primed and repainted with two fresh coats of white lacquer.
"The Hollywood Sign Trust is excited that Hollywood's leading lady received two tons of makeup in time to celebrate her 90th birthday," said Chris Baumgart, chairman of the nonprofit trust.
The project cost $175,000, with $140,000 covered by Sherwin-Williams, which donated the paint for the iconic sign, Baumgart said.
Over nine weeks, existing coatings were removed almost entirely by hand before painters applied over 100 gallons of primer and paint.
Built by Los Angeles Times then-publisher Harry Chandler in 1923 to trumpet his Hollywoodland real estate development, the sign quickly became a giant billboard for a city forever linked to the American movie business.
Situated on Mount Lee in the Hollywood Hills area of the Santa Monica Mountains, the sign was initially supposed to remain in place for just 18 months.
It has been upgraded periodically since the late 1940s.