PALM DESERT, Calif. -
The first paperboy at Paramount Pictures Studio in the early 1940s lives in Palm Desert.
Eye on the Desert’s Caitlin Thropay sat down with Bernard Mazel for an interview.
“Whenever I see old Paramount movies I see most of my customer's names," Mazel remembers.
Today, 88-year-old, Mazel reminisces his time as the first paperboy at Paramount Pictures Studio.
He started selling newspapers at 11 years old to help his family out financially.
“I had a very good income for an 11-year-old,” he said.
He sold the Los Angeles Herald-Express, one of LA’s oldest newspapers at a nickel apiece.
“The first person I used to see every day was Edith Head because Joe Levine was head of wardrobe and I delivered him a newspaper first and she was right in that same area with costumes," Mazel said.
Every day he would deliver up to 300 papers to movie stars, producers, directors, designers and executives working on the lot.
“Adolph Zukor’s office. He was the founder of Paramount Pictures and I would go into Adolph's office and do my homework,” he said.
After his father died, Mazel's mother was forced to work more hours.
As he began seeing his mother less and less, he says the employees at Paramount became like family to him.
“I got to know everyone very well in that length of time and they watch you grow up and your relationship changes from a little boy to a young man,” he said.
He worked as the paperboy at Paramount for six years until he was 17 years old.
“'The Ten Commandments' was a big production and I remember seeing Charlton Heston in his purple robe when they were leading the Jews out of Israel,” he said. “Sometimes on the set they would have to retake 19 times I would remember," he added.
Now his stories of working as the Paramount Paperboy are in the workings of becoming a children’s book.