Here’s how celebrities get stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame

Credit: Alberto E. Rodriguez

Credit: Alberto E. Rodriguez

Every year, the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce announces a group of entertainers who will be honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The terrazzo and brass stars are a popular tourist attraction, and ceremonies for the debut of them draw large crowds.

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Not any celebrity can get the honor, however. Here are some of the credentials needed to get a celebrity’s name permanently placed on the public sidewalk.

Get nominated

The first step in the process of getting a star involves a person being nominated under one of five categories: radio, motion pictures, live performance/theater, television and recording. The categories never change and the nominee has to have been active or be active in the entertainment business.

"We are constantly asked about the process. Nominating someone for a star is as simple as can be! All we ask for is a completed nomination application and a commitment to sponsor the star should their celebrity sign off on the nomination and attend the event if selected," Ana Martinez, producer of the Walk of Fame ceremonies said. "Anyone can nominate their favorite celebrity, including a fan. Each year, we receive an average of 300 nominations. The Walk of Fame Committee will select an elite group of personalities to become our newest Walk of Famers and continue to help make Hollywood the most famous landmark in the world!"

Get selected by the Walk of Fame Committee 

The Walk of Fame Committee is made up of five people from the five categories of entertainment and a chairman. The chairman only votes if there is a tie. About 30 names are selected for entry on the famed walk, but it varies. The number of those who are selected is not necessarily divided evenly among the categories.

Pay $40,000

After selections are made, those who nominated the celebrity pay $40,000 toward the cost of promotion, the star ceremony and future upkeep of the star. A portion of the costs go to the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. Some fans have raised funds for their favorite celebrity’s ceremony in the past, but the Walk of Fame does not encourage or endorse online campaigns for fundraising before a celebrity is selected for the honor. In other cases, movie studios or record labels foot the bill. The star cannot be bought and is an honor achieved through the nomination and selection process.

Set a date and have a ceremony, or not

After the selection of a celebrity is announced, they have to agree to being on the Walk of Fame. In fact, the nomination form says the nominee "guarantees to be present at the dedication ceremonies on a date and time mutually agreed upon with the Walk of Fame Committee."

The ceremony has to be scheduled within two years of the selection date, or the nomination will need to be submitted again.

Past announced celebrities, such as Julia Roberts and Dustin Hoffman, have not agreed to the honor, so stars with their names don't appear on the sidewalk. 

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