The TCM Classic Film Festival has more to offer than just movies. There are other special events, presentations and more, like today’s poolside wine tasting at the Roosevelt Hotel. I was watching movies while that happened but I did make it to another event in the Roosevelt. To be specific, I attended a presentation of sorts in the Blossom Room, the locale that hosted the very first Academy awards. It was called “My First Time in Hollywood,” hosted by author Cari Beauchamp and based on her book by the same name. Beauchamp started with a bit of Hollywood history; that of the town-cum-neighborhood, not of the industry. Then she brought up a succession of notable individuals to read passages from autobiographies of early Hollywood (the industry this time). Harold Lloyd’s own granddaughter read about his early days of sneaking onto the Universal lot for extra work. Friend of this site Laraine Newman read of Anita Loos’ drugstore conversation with D.W. Griffith. From Nancy Olson, it was Colleen Moore’s tale of being hired six hours after arriving in town from Illinois. Bruce Goldstein read Ben Hecht’s NSFW letters to his wife about the writing of Scarface. And David Ladd recounted Robert Parrish’s boyhood encounter with Charles Chaplin. Recurring descriptions of how ramshackle early studio lots were and repeated references to Griffith as some sort of mythical figure left a true, first-person impression of what this town was really like a century ago. Seated in a room that is part of that history, just a few blocks from where these stories took place, is a one of a kind experience that can only be found at this festival.