Mr. Cameron—being from the Los Angeles area—decided to purchase several of the searchlights and start a Portland searchlight advertising company. Because their use developed in Hollywood, he dubbed the company “Hollywood Lights”. What began as a trend in L.A. quickly became very popular in Portland, as businesses began using searchlights for grand openings at store and automobile showings.
During the 1950’s, theatrical lighting and trade show electrical gradually began to form a larger share of Hollywood Lights’ business. The 1960 opening of Portland’s Memorial Coliseum attracted more events requiring Hollywood Lights’ expertise.
By the early 1960’s, searchlight advertising had begun to decline and the decision was made to sell the equipment and focus exclusively on convention and trade show electrical services. Hollywood Lights continues to provide electrical services at the Coliseum and Portland Expo Center. In the early 1980’s, electrical services expanded to include Tacoma, Vancouver and Seattle, Washington.
Theatrical lighting remained a minor part of Hollywood Lights’ business until the late 1970’s, when the advent of disco brought with it a heightened interest in lighting equipment. While disco didn’t last long, it initiated a trend of using more lighting equipment in local entertainment establishments. To meet this increased demand, Hollywood Lights continued to add product lines and started to advertise. As customers and applications evolved, Hollywood Lights grew to better address the professional lighting needs of the theatrical, entertainment and special events industries throughout the Northwest.
Hollywood Lights also entered the television lighting business in the 1960’s, starting with political campaigns. Later, in 1990 Hollywood Lights started Pacific Grip & Lighting Inc. to serve the film industry in Portland and later purchased the Cine Company in Seattle to become the largest grip and lighting company in the Northwest. Pacific Grip & Lighting was sold in 1998, but remains one of our strongest partners in Portland and Seattle.
In 1995 Hollywood Lights acquired Superior Stage Lighting to further expand its inventory and talent base and, in the following year, opened a small office in Seattle to service rentals and sales. Due to growing demand, in 2002 Hollywood opened a full Production Lighting department in Seattle with remarkable success.
In 2003, Hollywood Lights split into two companies to allow a more focused application of energy and resources. Hollywood Lighting Services focused primarily on production lighting, rental and sales, while Hollywood Lights handled power distribution and electrical services. Although Hollywood was divided in name, it remained united in service – providing all of our client lighting and electrical needs under one roof. In 2008 both companies merged together again, offering all of our services under the name Hollywood Lights INC. in effort to streamline our customers experience.
For more than 60 years, Hollywood Lights has been dedicated to providing the customer with exceptional service and superior equipment and will continue to do so for years to come. We are proud to be the largest independent, locally owned lighting provider in the Pacific Northwest and strive to live up to our mission statement and follow our guiding principles with every customer.