Seeing Stars: Final Resting Places of the Stars


Part III
6300 Forest Lawn Drive,
Los Angeles, CA. / (323) 254-7251 or (818) 984-1711






[This is a multi-page article. Click here to go to page one.]


Return to the main sidewalk, and walk east, past the Freddie Prinze / George Raft corridor, and out through the back into the next garden. Then turn left, you'll run right into another large white marble sarcophagus, similar to those of Bette Davis and Liberace (only this one faces east, not west.) There is a statue of a seated woman on top, feeding a child.

This tomb belongs to Albert ("Cubby") Broccoli (1909-1996). While his name may not be that familiar, his work is.

He's the producer who gave us all of those great James Bond / 007 movies: from "Dr. No" & "Goldfinger" to "The Spy Who Loved Me" and "License to Kill".

An American (born in new York), he was fascinated with bringing Ian Flemming's British secret agent, James Bond, to the big screen. And when he did, it became the most successful movie series in history, having grossed over four billion dollars.

The series went through a number of different actors playing 007 (Sean Connery, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton, Pierce Brosnan...), but Broccoli remained at the helm. His daughter, Barbara Broccoli, is now producing the Bond films.

[Click here to see a map of the Courts of Remembrance area.]






While facing Broccoli's tomb, you will notice that to your right and slightly behind you, across corner of the lawn, there is a wall of both white and dark marble crypts.

Here, you'll find another familiar character actor from a popular sitcom: comic actor Morey Amsterdam (1908-1996), who was best known as the wisecracking gag writer 'Buddy' on "The Dick Van Dyke Show" (alongside co-workers Dick & Rose Marie), the show that introduced Mary Tyler Moore to the TV audience.

A gag writer in real life, he was nicknamed "The Human Joke Machine." He started out at age 14 in vaudeville, moved on to be a radio star, appeared as a guest on many game shows, and even had his own "Morey Amsterdam Show" back around 1950.

His wall crypt is 3 spaces up from the bottom and 4 spaces in from (to the right of) the corner.





One space below Morey on this wall (and one space to the right) is the crypt of actress Isabel Sanford (1917-2004).

You'll remember her as Louise ('Weezie') Jefferson, the TV wife of George Jefferson (Sherman Hemsley) on the hit sitcom, "The Jeffersons".

The Jeffersons started out as the next-door neighbors of Archie Bunker, back in the early '70s, when "All in the Family" was the hottest show on TV. They were spun off on their own sitcom in 1975, which (like "Maude" and "Good Times", two other "All in the Family" spin-offs), turned out to be a big hit on its own. The show ran for ten years; its theme song ("Movin' on Up") is one of those memorable TV themes that you can't get out of your head.

Isabel was the first African-American actress to win the Emmy award for "Best Actress in a Comedy". And before landing her role on "The Jeffersons", she appeared opposite Spencer Tracy and Sidney Poitier in 1967's "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner".




While you're at Morey's grave, look to your left, and you will see another wall, this one made up of of tiny crypts. There's another star on the bottom row of this wall, just past the bottom of a short flight of steps, between numbers 663695 and 663697.

Her name is Ann Harding (1901-1981), and she was nominated for an Oscar as Best Actress of 1930 for her performance in "Holiday." She starred in dozens of other films, including "Girl of the Golden West," as well as numerous guest spots on TV shows later in her life.




To the left of the Ann Harding area, on the wall behind the Albert Brocolli sarcophagus you'll see the entrance to the "Columbarium of Providence".

Step inside this small room, and turn to your right. There, on the right wall, you'll see a small statue of a woman raising a small child over her head. (Click on the small photo to the right)

On the left side of this statue, at eye level (on pink tile), you'll find the niche of Academy Award-winning actor, Rod Steiger (1925-2002).

Steiger appeared in over 100 movies. He nominated for an Oscar for his role as Brando's brother in the 1954 classic, "On The Waterfront". Some will remember him best for his starring role as a holocaust survivor in 1965's "The Pawnbroker" (which garnered him another nomination), or as Laura's seducer in in "Doctor Zhivago", or as the villainous 'Jud' in the musical "Oklahoma!", or as the man covered with tattoos in 1969's "The Illustrated Man".

But he won his Oscar for his role of Southern Sheriff 'Bill Gillespie' in the 1967 movie "In the Heat of the Night" (the same role filled on TV by Carroll O'Connor), opposite Sidney Poitier.





Before leaving the room, turn around and look at the opposite wall (to the left of the door when you enter). Here, you'll see another small statue, this one of a mother cradling her baby. On the wall just to the left of this wall (just to the right of the door as you face it on the inside), you'll find the niche of the husband & wife team of Bobby Troup (1918-1999) & Julie London (1926-2000).

They are probably best known today as the nurse & doctor team on the 70’s show “Emergency”. But long before that, Julie London was a successful torch singer (recording the hit “Cry Me a River”), and she was once married to “Dragnet”’s Jack Webb (who is also buried here at FLHH). Before "Emergency", Bobby Troup was better known as a songwriter, having written the hit “Route 66”.

(It’s interesting to note that Jack Webb produced their show, “Emergency”, and hired them both after Jack and Julie had parted ways.)

Click on the small photos to see larger pictures.





Go back to the main, center walkway and walk east to the very end of the walkway.  There you'll see a very tall, white statue of Jesus with his arms outstretched.

There is an archway on each side of this statue.  Walk through the archway to your right, into the Sanctuary of Enduring Protection, and look at the wall on your left just after you enter.

Just three spaces inside, and three spaces up from the bottom, you'll find the crypt of actress Sandra Dee (1942-2005).

Today, most young people may recognize her name only from the song "Look At Me, I'm Sandra Dee", sung by the character 'Rizzo' in the musical "Grease", which poked fun at the wholesome, virginal screen image of the young actress.

But the real Sandra Dee was a teen superstar in her day (the late '50s and early '60s), appearing as an innocent adolescent in such hit movies as (the original) "Gidget" and two of the popular "Tammy" films, as well as several dramas such as "Imitation of Life" and "A Summer Place".

She was also married to teen heartthrob Bobby Darin.




Debbie Reynolds & Carrie FisherActresses Debbie Reynolds and her daughter, Carrie Fisher, were buried together here in 2017, in this Court of Remembrance.

Carrie died while aboard a plane from London to L.A., and Debbie followed her just one day later.

It's unique to find two major stars buried together, and even more special since they are mother and daughter.

Debbie Reynolds (1932-2016) was one of Hollywood's brightest stars, emerging (just before the Golden Age came to an end) to star along with Gene Kelly & Donald O'Connor in the 1952 musical smash, "Singin' in the Rain", which many critics consider the best musical ever made.

Making her performance in Singin' all the more impressive is the fact that Debbie didn't even know how to dance when the studio gave her that starring role, but you'd never know it from watching her in the film, where she more than holds her own against the two experienced male dancers.

Typically playing the 'nice girl', Debbie went on to star in films such as "Bundle of Joy", "Tammy and the Bachelor, "How the West Was Won", and "The Unsinkable Molly Brown", as well as her own TV show, "The Debbie Reynolds Show". She even had a #1 hit record with the theme from her "Tammy" movie.


Debbie's daughter, Carrie Fisher (1956-2016), broke into the public eye starring as 'Princess Leia' in one of the most popular movies of all time, 1977's "Star Wars".  She went on to reprise the role in the film's two hit sequels ("The Empire Strikes Back" and "Return of the Jedi", and (almost 40 years later) in the 2015 sequel, "The Force Awakens".

Outside the Star Wars universe, she also appeared in the films "When Harry Met Sally" and "Hannah and Her Sisters", "Shampoo", and she wrote "Postcards from the Edge", loosely based on she and Debbie's sometimes-rocky relationship.

To find their final resting place, from Sandra Dee's grave, walk back out into the grassy quad or courtyard, then turn and look to your left (to the south). The courtyard is bounded by crypt walls on all sides, but you will note that there are two such buildings on that south side, and you can walk between them to reach another, similar grassy courtyard.

Do just that.  Walk between those two buildings (and down a short flight of steps) and you'll emerge in that other grassy courtyard.  In front of you, on the other side of the lawns, you will see two large, free-standing marble tombs (sarcophagi), very similar to those of Bette Davis and Liberace, with white, life-size statues on top.

Debbie and Carrie are interred in the tomb to the left side of the aisle, against that south wall. It is topped with life-size white statues of an adult couple wearing robes and clasping hands.

It is unmarked at the moment, but no doubt it will soon bear their names in front, and I will add photos once they add a marker.

(Better yet, just click here to see my map of the Remembrance area, to see their exact spot.)





Michael Clarke DuncanNearby is the crypt of actor Michael Clarke Duncan (1957-2012).

At 6' 5" and 300+ lbs of muscle, he cut a powerful figure.

He is best remembered as the gentle giant ('John Coffey') in the Tom Hanks drama, "The Green Mile".  But he was also featured in such movies as  "Armageddon", "The Whole Nine Yards", "Daredevil", "The Scorpion King", "Planet of the Apes", and appeared on a host of TV shows, including a co-starring role in the  2012 series "The Finder".

Michael was only 54 when he passed away, from a heart attack.

His wall crypt is located here in the Courts of Remembrance, on the west-facing wall of a new section called the Sanctuary of Treasured Love. It's just a few steps to the east of Debbie & Carrie. Just walk through the archway, and turn to your right.

His brown marble crypt two spaces up from the bottom, right in the middle of the wall, to the right of an arch with a large statue (title Beloved Mother). (See a map.)




Continue the virtual tour of Forest Lawn Hollywood

             

and discover the graves of stars like Andy Gibb, Lou Rawls,
MASH's McLean Stevenson and Leon Ames...

Page 1 - Page 2 - Page 3 - Page 4 - Page 5 - Page 6 - Page 7



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