Hang with (wax) celebs at Madame Tussauds Hollywood

The world-famous Madame Tussauds wax museum has a branch in Hollywood. If you’re up for a touristy activity, stopping by to get your picture taken with a bunch of wax stars can be fun. You’re allowed to touch the wax figures and playfully pose for photos.

This report will be mostly photographic in nature, with a few tips tossed in to help you get the best pics and avoid the crowds.

I was amazed at how realistic most of the figures were, from Conan O’Brien to President Obama to Sue Sylvester from Glee. Only a few figures looked a little weird (sorry, Ryan Seacrest.)

There’s an Old Hollywood room with stars from years gone by. George Burns and Bob Hope look on at Marilyn Monroe:

wax marilyn monroe

Hanging with my girl Marlene Dietrich:

wax marlene dietrich

I don’t know who Gloria Swanson is, but I wanted to hang out with her:

wax gloria swanson

Sharing a laugh with Jack Nicholson:

wax jack nicholson

Hannibal Lecter is intense:

wax hannibal lecter

Baby, I was born this way:

wax lady gaga

Beam me up Scotty! (I was named after the Star Trek character… for real)

wax star trek william shatner

Quentin Tarantino can’t stop filming:

wax quentin tarantino

My pals Brangelina:

wax angelina jolie brad pitt

Holdin’ down the west side with Snoop D-O-double G:

wax snoop dogg

A few tips for taking photos at Madame Tussauds Wax Museum:

The lighting is a little weird. Most figures have a spotlight directly on their face, while the rest of the room is dim. Be sure to have a flash, and for best photo results, get as close as possible to the figures. I was only a couple feet away from Jim Carrey, but check out how poorly the pic came out. This shot could’ve been gold!

wax jim carrey

When posing, be sure to look in the same direction as the figure, and be sure your photographer takes the shot from an angle that makes it look like the figure is looking directly into the camera. Many of the figures are staring off into weird directions, so your photos are going to look strange if you are looking right at the camera and your wax friend is staring off in another direction.

wax will smith

As with any tourist attraction, going on weekdays and early in the morning (they open at 10 am) is best to avoid crowds. That’s especially true with this attraction. It’s going to be much harder to pose with Michael Jackson if there are dozens of other folks in the room. I went at 10:30 on a Monday morning and there were never more than 5 or 6 people in the same room as me.

wax jack nicholson

Buy tickets online in advance to save $5 off the $25 price. Or, if you’re really gung-ho about celebrity Hollywood, you can buy a package on the street that gets you admission to a star bus tour and the wax museum. Look around on the sidewalk on that block for studio reps offering tickets to free show tapings. Minute to Win It and Real Time with Bill Maher were among those being offered to us, but, unfortunately, we were unable to take advantage of these offers.

Watch this one-minute video for a look at more wax figures, including Madonna, Michael Jackson, Elton John, Halle Berry and Denzel Washington:

Check out Madame Tussauds online. They have additional locations around the globe, including Las Vegas, New York, London, Bangkok, Berlin, Hong Kong and Shanghai.


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About Scott Shetler

Scott is a Chicago-based journalist and blogger who seeks out quirky sights and awesome destinations throughout North America and beyond.

16 comments on “Hang with (wax) celebs at Madame Tussauds Hollywood

  1. Kind of a fun thing to do, wasn’t it? For a long time I refused to go into any of the Madame Tussauds museums — too touristy. Then in London a few years ago, we were walking by and there were no tourists in line, so we went it. I was glad we did (except for the terrifying Chamber of Horrors experience, which I would never do again). Got my picture taken with Sean Connery, Tony Blair and George Bush.
    Cathy Sweeney recently posted..Tucking in Napa

    • Yeah, I didn’t really want to do it in the past but for some reason it struck me as fun this time. I was there had been a chamber of horrors, though… that sounds fun!

    • I am not usually in a position to offer photo tips, but in this case hopefully people can learn from my mistakes!

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