The refurbished Hollywood sign was presented in all its freshly painted glory Tuesday after its biggest makeover in 35 years, in time for 90th birthday celebrations.
Some 360 gallons of fresh bright white paint was applied over the last two months to the Tinseltown icon, which sits atop Mount Lee in the Hollywood Hills north of LA.
Over the last two months, workers have used window-cleaner style platforms to strip down the 50-foot (15-meter) tall letters, powerwash the corrugated iron and apply fresh primer and topcoat paint.
The paint job cost some $175,000, $140,000 of it paid for by the company whose paint was used. Sherwin-Williams also provides the distinctive color for the Golden Gate bridge, further up the California coast.
The original sign was erected in 1923 to advertise a property development called Hollywoodland, but the last four letters were removed in the 1940s.
One of the City of Angels’ most beloved attractions, the sign had fallen into disrepair until it was restored in the 1970s after a campaign that saw nine donors pay $27,777 to “adopt” one letter each.
It was threatened again more recently when investors who own land surrounding the giant white letters indicated plans to sell the plot to developers.
But Playboy mogul Hugh Hefner helped secure the sign in 2010, along with then-California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and other Hollywood luminaries, including Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks.
The sign’s history is not without tragedy. In 1932, British actress Peg Entwistle infamously committed suicide by throwing herself off the top of the letter H.