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When Hollywood became Hollyweed

January 02, 2017 09:57 IST

Los Angeles residents awoke on New Year’s Day to find a prankster had altered the famed Hollywood sign to read “Hollyweed”.

IMAGE: The Hollywood sign has been changed using white and black tarp to read 'Hollyweed'. Photograph: Kevork Djansezian/Reuters

Security cameras showed a man dressed all in black scaling the sign around 3 am (local time) on New Year’s Day and throwing huge black and white tarpaulins over the Os so as to change the shape of the letters.

Sergeant Robert Payan, from the Los Angeles Police Department, said the person climbed a protective fence around the sign and then scaled each letter to make the change.

The prank is likely a reference to a vote in California in November approving the recreational use of marijuana from the beginning of 2018.

IMAGE: The original sign was erected in 1923. Reading "Hollywoodland" it was intended to promote a housing development in the area.  But the last four letters deteriorated and were removed in the late 1940s. Photograph: Kevork Djansezian/Reuters

It marks the second time -- 41 years to this day -- that the 50 foot tall sign was changed to read “Hollyweed”.

It was changed on New Year’s Day of 1976, by Cal State Northridge student Daniel Finegood, who scaled Mount Lee.