Burbank California Film Studios Tours

While visiting Los Angeles, Burbank is the perfect place to experience Hollywood's fantasy and glitz. Warner Brothers Studios offers a VIP Tour that looks inside one of Hollywood's busiest and most famous motion picture studios. It includes an introductory film showcasing movies and television shows created by Warner Bros. Guests are then escorted via tour carts to the Warner Bros. Museum. Exhibits include costumes, props, awards and actual scripts from well known productions. From the Museum, guests visit backlot sets, sound stages and production shops. The Warner Bros. Studios VIP Tour operates Monday through Friday. warnerbros.com

Location: Gate 3 parking structure at 4301 W. Olive across from Gate 2 entrance of  Warner Bros. main lot. Adults must present legal photo identification upon registration and persons under 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult.

A more affordable tour is offered at NBC Studios at 3000 West Alameda, Burbank. The tour takes guests to the Wardrobe, Make Up, Set Construction, Special Effects and Sound Effects departments and includes a stop at the "Tonight Show" set where Jay Leno tapes his late night comedy.

To get tickets for the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, send a self-addressed stamped envelope with a brief letter listing the desired date of taping and three alternate dates. You can request up to four tickets, but seating is limited. Audience members must be at least 16 years old. If tickets are available for the date you request, they will be sent to you by return mail approximately 2-3 weeks prior to the show date. All mail requests are processed on a first come, first-served basis and should be submitted at least 6 weeks in advance.
Tickets for a specific show are available the day of the show only at the NBC Ticket Box, located at NBC in Burbank, CA. The NBC Ticket Box opens at 8:00 a.m. All available tickets are distributed to the public on a first come, first-served two (2) tickets per person basis. Location: 3000 W. Alameda, Burbank  www.nbc.com

Getting to Burbank: Burbank/Glendale/Pasadena Airport www.burbankairport.com
Burbank Airport features access to and from Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley. It’s the closest airport to Downtown L.A., Hollywood, Disney, Warner Bros., NBC, the Rose Bowl, Dodger Stadium, Magic Mountain and many beaches and attractions. Airlines operating out of Burbank Airport include Alaska, Aloha, America West, American, Southwest and United.

Originally part of two large Spanish land grants--Rancho San Rafael, granted to Don Jose Maria Verdugo by the Spanish government in 1798 and Rancho La Providencia, Burbank was named after Dr. David Burbank, who purchased both ranchos in 1867 to raise sheep. The New Hampshire dentist sold off portions of the land to Southern Pacific Railroad and developers who subdivided the property into parcels for residences. Land speculators began selling property in 1887 and by 1911, Burbank had 500 citizens who incorporated their community. The population increased to 2,913 in 1920 and to 16,622 in 1930.

Burbank's continued growth was tied in to aviation and entertainment with Lockheed Aircraft Company building a plant for aircraft production. As the U.S. entered World War II, Lockheed had approximately 94,000 employees producing 19,000 planes. Meanwhile, the motion picture industry moved to Burbank. First National Pictures built a 78-acre site in the 1920's.

It became Warner Bros., a name known today in the field of entertainment. Landmarks of the newly-acquired company included release of the first all-talking 1927 movie, The Jazz Singer, starring Al Jolson. The success of the first enterprise here, along with the idyllic climate and work force attracted Columbia Pictures. The company built a ranch facility, using it primarily for outdoor shooting. Walt Disney's company, outgrew its Hollywood quarters and purchased 51 acres in Burbank. Disney's million-dollar studio was completed in 1939 on Buena Vista Street.

Today, Walt Disney Studios in Burbank at 500 S. Buena Vista Street,
Burbank, CA. / (818) 560-1000 is Walt Disney Studios, home of the greatest fantasy & animated films ever made. The studios include a fantasy building with an edifice that includes the  includes an Animation Building with an 85-foot-tall Sorcerer's Apprentice hat, red and white stripes, and the word "ANIMATION" in tall letters visible from the Ventura freeway. The building houses approximately 600 employees. A brief Disney Timeline from Columbia Journalism Review includes these highlights:

1901 - Walter E. Disney is born
1928 - Mickey Mouse is featured for the first time in the short animated film, Steamboat Willie
1929 - Walt Disney Productions formed
1937 - Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is released. It is Disney's first full length animated film
1940 - Walt Disney Productions offers stock as the company goes public to help lower debt. The company also moves its operations from Hollywood to Burbank, CA.
1941 - Disney animation workers go out on strike for five months. Deal to return back to work is finally brokered by federal mediators
1943 - The American Broadcast Company network is formed after the FCC rules that NBC must sell one of its two radio networks. The NBC Blue network is sold to Edward J. Noble for $8 million. Noble made his money as the creator of Lifesavers candy.
1945 - Walt's brother, Roy, becomes president of company
1947 - Walt Disney testifies in front of the House Committee on Un-American Activities
1951 - Leonard Goldstein and United Paramount Theaters buy ABC for $25 million
1953 - Buena Vista Distribution Company is formed to act as Disney film distributor
1954 - Disneyland, the first weekly television series from the studio debuts on ABC
1955 - Disneyland opens in Anaheim, CA at a cost of $17 million. The ABC television network is partial investor in Disneyland. The Mickey Mouse Club airs on ABC for the first time. Howard Hughes offers to sell Disney the RKO studio but Walt and Roy decline the deal
1960 - Disney buys out ABC's remaining financial interest in Disneyland
1966 - Walt Disney dies from lung cancer
1970 - Monday Night Football debuts
1971 - Walt Disney World opens in Orlando, FL. Roy Disney dies
1979 - ESPN is launched
1983 - Tokyo Disneyland opens. The Disney Channel makes its debut on cable television
1984 - Michael Eisner becomes the new CEO for Walt Disney Productions. ABC in a deal with Getty Oil acquires ESPN. ABC sells 20% of the sports cable network to Nabisco who in turn later deals the stake to Hearst
1986 - Company changes name from Walt Disney Productions to the Walt Disney Company. Capital Cities Communication, a large broadcasting group, acquires the ABC television network for 3.5 $billion.
1987 - ESPN is awarded the National Football League's first cable broadcasting deal
1992 - Disney is awarded a National Hockey League expansion team to be called The Mighty Ducks of Anaheim make their league debut. ESPN Radio is launched
1993 - Disney acquires Miramax Films
1995 - Disney announces its intent to purchase Capital Cities/ABC for $19 billion. The deal is the largest media merger in history to the point and the second largest sum of money ever paid for a U.S. company
1996 - Capital Cities/ABC officially becomes part of the Disney Company. Disney.com is launched. Disney gains ownership stake in Major League Baseball's California Angels. Team later changes its name to the Anaheim Angels. Radio Disney is launched
1997 - Knight Ridder purchases Disney's four newspapers (Kansas City Star, Forth Worth Star-Telegram, Wilkes Barre Times Leader, Belleville News-Democrat) for $1.65 billion
1998 - ESPN The Magazine is launched
1999 - Fairchild Publications is sold to Advance Publications. The magazine chains includes such titles as W, Jane, and Women's Wear Daily
2000 - Robert Iger becomes president and COO
2001 - News Corp. sells Fox Family Worldwide to Disney. Cable channel later becomes known as ABC Family
2002 - ESPN and ABC announce their acquisition of the National Basketball Association's television broadcasting rights
2003 - Anaheim Angels sold to Phoenix businessman Arturo Moreno for just over $180 million
2003 - Roy Disney resigns as vice-chairman of the Walt Disney entertainment

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