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The “Pretty Woman”/”(500) Days of Summer” Fountain and Park

Apr 16th, 2010 | By | Category: Movie Locations

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Another Downtown Los Angeles location that my fiancé and I stalked this past weekend was the water fountain and park which appeared in both fave movie Pretty Woman and not so fave movie (500) Days of Summer.  I discovered this location way back in September of 2007 when I was called to serve as a juror on a four day trial at the Clara Shortridge Foltz Criminal Justice Center in Downtown L.A.  I’m glad to know jury duty is at least good for something.  😉 

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As I’ve mentioned a few times before on this blog, included in Los Angeles’ jury orientation presentation are directions to the nearest Starbucks – made complete with a PowerPoint slide showing a map which details the cafe’s exact location.  I am not kidding here!  Needless to say, I spent quite a bit of time at that Starbucks, especially because jurors are often given two hour-plus lunches (also not kidding!).  The “Courthouse Starbucks” as I came to call it is located in the middle of the Civic Center Mall, which is a large plaza that can be found about two blocks away from the Criminal Justice Center.  While waiting in line to order my latte one morning, I noticed a HUGE fountain located just north of where I was standing and immediately recognized it as the fountain which appeared in Pretty Woman.   I had always wondered where that fountain was located, so I was beyond floored to have discovered it while waiting in line to purchase a cup of coffee.  It always amazes me the things I notice if I just have my eyes open, instead of buried in my Blackberry.  😉  Anyway, because jurors aren’t allowed to bring cameras into the Criminal Justice Center, I wasn’t able to take any photographs of the fountain while on jury duty, so this past weekend I dragged my fiancé back there so that I could finally blog about the place.

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In Pretty Woman, the fountain shows up towards the end of the movie in the scene in which Vivian Ward (aka Julia Roberts) has just convinced Edward Lewis (aka Richard Gere) to take his very first day off of work.  Vivian is shown walking along the rim of the fountain where she announces that she wants a “snap dog” – whatever that is.

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The official name of the Pretty Woman fountain is the Arthur J. Will Memorial Fountain and it was dedicated on May 18, 1966.  Will, who served as the chief administrative officer of the County of Los Angeles from 1951 to 1957, was instrumental in developing the Civic Center Mall as an urban park and garden for those Angelinos who worked in the area so that they could enjoy a bit of outdoor time during their busy day.  The Civic Center Mall is officially known as El Paseo De Los Pobladores De Los Angeles, which translates to “The Walk of the First Settlers of Los Angeles”, and was named in honor of the 44 Mexican settlers who on September 4th of 1781 founded the City of Angels. 

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I have to give some serious props to the Grim Cheaper right now, as he is turning out to be quite the little stalker!  While we were taking pictures of the Arthur J. Will Memorial Fountain he immediately recognized the park located just south of it as the spot where Edward and Vivian “copped a squat” in Pretty Woman.  I am ashamed to admit that I didn’t recognize the park at all, and was so convinced that it wasn’t the same one which appeared in Pretty Woman that I told him not to bother taking any photographs of it!  It’s a good thing he didn’t listen to me,though, because as it turns out, the patch of grass which is located in the southern portion of the Civic Center Mall is, in fact, the Pretty Woman park.   Thank you, G.C.!

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The park was featured in the scene immediately following the fountain scene, in which Edward and Vivian are shown relaxing on a blanket and reading Shakespeare out loud to each other.

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As I mentioned above, the Civic Center Mall was also featured in the 2009 flick (500) Days of Summer and I immediately recognized the place when I saw the movie a few months back.  The Arthur J. Will Memorial Fountain appeared very briefly in the beginning of the big Hall & Oates “You Make My Dreams Come True” dance sequence.

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The vast majority of the dance sequence takes place on the walkway just east of the fountain, in between the Kenneth Hahn Hall of Administration building and the Courthouse Starbucks. 

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I also immediately recognized the dance area when I first watched (500) Days of Summer, as it is located along the exact route I would take multiple times each day while on my frequent Starbucks runs during jury duty – and yes, I go to Starbucks multiple times a day and I’m not ashamed to admit it!  :)

Needless to say, the (500) Days of Summer dance sequence was my absolute favorite scene in the entire movie!  I’m a sucker for any sort of musical type performance and being that “You Make My Dreams Come True” is one of my VERY favorite ‘80s songs, I felt like the whole thing was pretty much tailor-made for me.  But because the scene was so incredibly fun and upbeat and joyful, it made the movie’s ending all that more shocking of a blow.  :(  You can watch the big (500) Days of Summer dance number by clicking above – but I’m warning you, unless you want to be depressed for a good couple of hours, do NOT watch the rest of the movie.

Until next time, Happy Stalking!  :)

Pretty Woman Map

Stalk It: The Civic Center Mall, aka El Paseo De Los Pobladores De Los Angeles, is located in between the Los Angeles County Municipal Court (111 N. Hill Street) and the Kenneth Hahn Hall of Administration (500 West Temple Street), and is bordered by Hill Street to the north and Grand Avenue to the south.  The Arthur J. Will Memorial Fountain, aka the Pretty Woman fountain, is located in the northern portion of the Mall, near North Grand Avenue, in between West Temple Street and West 1st Street.  The Pretty Woman park is located just a bit south of the fountain, on North Hill Street.  The (500) Days of Summer dance sequence took place on the walkway in front of the Kenneth Hahn Hall of Administration.  The cameras were facing southwest for most of that scene, looking towards the Hall of Records building.

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8 comments

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  1. Paul says:

    I was in LA over the weekend so I decided to hit up some spots I have been curious about. This fountain was one of them. The whole area was drastically remodeled recently so it looks a bit different now. Still worth a stop if you are in the area.

  2. Zulie says:

    its the snap the casing of a hot dog, made with all natural casing
    such as Caspers, or Pinks
    There was a hot dog cart/vendor in the film
    for the film

  3. Geoff says:

    the greatest commercial of all time…aka the Miller Lite Catfight…was also filmed here lol

  4. Cindy says:

    You make my dreams come true….sounds like a good wedding song! Especially if it was an 80’s fav. Well?

  5. Kerry says:

    I ditto what David said about the trees. Dont know why its so cool to see them after so many years but it is. LOVE Pretty Woman and I seem to catch it on cable quite often. This is a great scene; gotta love the film flub!!!

  6. David Crocker says:

    It’s always bothered me that when Richard Gere and Julia Roberts sit down in the park, the first thing she does is take off his shoes and socks, but later when he’s reading the book his shoes and socks are back on. I mean, sure, he could’ve put them back on, but nothing every tells or shows us that. Drives me nuts every time.

    I also love seeing trees from movies that were filmed a good amount of time ago. Check out how much bigger the tree they sat beside is now, compared to when it was it in the film.

  7. Erin says:

    Now I really wanna know what a snap dog is..


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  1. […] the art deco wonder of the Arthur J. Will Memorial fountain. It was a piece of L.A. history – featured in numerous televisions ads and motion pictures, including “Pretty Woman” and “500 Days of […]

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