London’s Greatest Exports to LA
The biggest names to make the switch from the Big Smoke to the City of Angels.
LA and London are two of the most iconic cities in the world, but for very different reasons. While most entertainment across the world comes from Hollywood, it isn’t all home grown. We take a look at some of the greatest exports from London to Los Angeles, in the form of some of the world’s greatest entertainers.
‘The Master of Suspense’, Alfred Hitchcock was originally born in Leytonstone, East London in 1899. His interest in film led him to start his career in the industry at the age of 20, as a title card designer for silent movies. Over five years Hitchcock rose to become a director, and by 1939 he and his family moved to Hollywood.
During his time in LA, England’s greatest director would go on to direct his most notable works, from Rebecca to Psycho, and pick up five nominations for ‘Best Director’ as well as winning ‘Best Picture’ at the Oscars. He also has the honour of two stars on the Hollywood Walk of fame.
Charlie Chaplin, most notorious for his persona ‘The Tramp’ was born in Walworth, London in 1889. A real rags-to-riches story, from spending time in the Victorian workhouses, to signing one of the biggest Hollywood contracts in history. At the age of 8 Chaplin was already following in the footsteps of his parents as a performer, debuting as a tap-dancer in a group called the ‘The Eight Lancashire Lads’.
By the time he was 18, Chaplin was a well established comedy performer, and was selected by Fred Karno’s comedy company to tour the USA’s vaudeville circuit. Here he gained popularity, and in 1913 moved to Hollywood after accepting a contract with Keystone Studios. During his first full year in Hollywood, Chaplin made a whopping 35 films, and developed his most renowned character – The Tramp.
Saul Hudson – better known as Slash, the top-hat wearing guitarist from Guns ‘N’ Roses, is one of the most famous figures in music history. As lead guitarist for the band, you can hear his iconic riffs on such tracks as Welcome to the Jungle, Mr Brownstone and Sweet Child o’ Mine (which was named greatest guitar riff ever by Total Guitar.)
Spending most of his life in California, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and featured on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Slash is LA through and through. However, the English do take some credit, with Slash being born in Hampstead, London to his artistic parents, before making the move to LA at the age of 5.
Born in Leytonstone, East London in 1975, ‘Golden Balls’ David Beckham is one of Football’s most high profile figures and world famous sports personalities. Famous for his free-kicks, the star spent a large portion of his career playing for Manchester United, before moving to Madrid in 2003. After three successful seasons, Becks swapped the Galacticos for LA Galaxy in a high profile move which paid off before he even landed in Los Angeles.
A winner of 10 different league titles during his career, including two MLS Cups, he also had the distinction of winning 115 caps for England, many of which as captain of the team. He is sometimes better known in the US for his marriage to former Spice Girl Victoria Beckham, his endorsements for Adidas, and his burgeoning-celebrity children, Brooklyn, Romeo, Cruz and Harper.
Hollywood hard-man Vinnie Jones has starred in a number of blockbusters, from Snatch to X-Men: The Last Stand, and even Madagascar 3. Although he now resides in Mulholland Drive, LA, Jones was born in Watford, Greater London and started out his career as a professional footballer playing for several clubs.
After winning the FA Cup with Wimbledon, he went on to win caps with the Welsh National Team. He also starred in a football-themed movie called Mean Machine, playing a former England international turned convicted criminal. Football is still Jones’ passion, and he now spends his days in Los Angeles coaching the ‘Hollywood All-Stars’.