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Hollywood sphere wouldn’t compare to Las Vegas’

Updated November 14, 2023 - 3:33 pm

It’s a sphere, but not at all the Sphere.

The West Hollywood Planning Commission Sunset Arts & Advertising Subcommittee is considering a 50-foot-high structure titled “Sphere on Sunset.”

Unaffiliated with the Sphere Las Vegas or The Big Dome prototype in Burbank, this baby-sphere venue would loom over Sunset Boulevard.

In terms of scale, this is a softball compared to a bowling ball. The Hollywood venue is a far smaller adaptation of the Sphere Las Vegas, which is some 366 feet high.

Officials for the Sphere Las Vegas reinforced the point that this new sphere (to flip a phrase from its headlining band) is nothing like the real thing.

According to a Dateline report, the West Hollywood project would not be a performance space. It is to encompass three levels for broadcasting and podcast space, a reception area and green rooms. No AI robots named Aura are reported in the plans.

A rooftop terrace and media-themed plaza are in the plans. The attraction would be open 24/7, which the Sphere Las Vegas is not.

The proposed sphere would be built between Olive Drive and Kings Road, flanked by Pendry West Hollywood and the Best Western Plus / Sunset Plaza Hotel.

The sphere would (somehow) be elevated some eight feet off the ground. How that would be done has not been disclosed.

In place of Exosphere, developers plan “The Experience,” an outdoor presentation of the history of broadcasting and entertainment.

According to a staff memo quoited by Dateline, “The circular interactive display will include an historical timeline, images, and artifacts that the public can meander through allowing a deeper understanding and appreciation for these industries and Sunset’s role in the formation of these industries.”

The L.A. sphere is in the rendering phase. It still needs approval from the West Hollywood City Council. As we’ve learned in covering our own globe-shaped venue, these things take time.

John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His “PodKats!” podcast can be found at reviewjournal.com/podcasts. Contact him at jkatsilometes@reviewjournal.com. Follow @johnnykats on X, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.

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