The 2003 Christmas comedy “Elf” was primarily filmed in New York City. After discovering he’s actually human, Buddy the Elf, played by Will Ferrell, seeks out his father Walter, played by James Caan, in New York. Walter’s office is located in the famed Empire State Building.
LOCATION: 20 W 34th St, New York, NY 10001
When Buddy takes Jovie, played by Zooey Deschanel, on a date, she shows him the Christmas tree in front of Rockefeller Center. The two then ice skate there.
LOCATION: 45 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10111
Later in the film, Buddy helps Santa get his sleigh back into the air. The sleigh passes through Central Park at Bethesda Terrace and Fountain. The terrace is another famous New York landmark seen in countless films.
LOCATION: 72 Terrace Dr, New York, NY 10021 (inside Central Park)
For the 1993 movie adaptation of “The Beverly Hillbillies,” the Clampett family lives in this house, which is not located in Beverly Hills, rather in Pasadena. The property has appeared in many productions, such as “The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement,” as well as the television shows “Charlie’s Angels,” “Murder, She Wrote,” “Knight Rider” and many more.
LOCATION: 1288 S Oakland Ave, Pasadena, CA 91106
While part of the home can be seen from the street, it is only a side of the house and doesn’t give you a proper perspective of just how large it really is.
The 1993 Robert Altman film “Short Cuts” is based on short stories by author Raymond Carver. Originally set in the Pacific Northwest, for Altman’s film adaptation, he switched the setting to Los Angeles. The film features intersecting stories performed by an ensemble cast.
The house of Ann and Howard Finnegan, played by Andie MacDowell and Bruce Davidson respectively, can be found in North Hollywood.
LOCATION: 4950 Bellaire Ave, North Hollywood, CA 91607
The house next door is where Zoe, played by Lori Singer, lives with her mother Tess, played by Annie Ross. After being injured by a car, the Finnegan’s son Casey returns home. Zoe is playing basketball with some friends in front of the garage and asks Casey why he’s not in school, but he does not answer.
LOCATION: 4946 Bellaire Ave, North Hollywood, CA 91607
The restaurant where Doreen, played by Lily Tomlin, works is the former Johnie’s Broiler in Downey. She is visited there by her husband Earl, played by Tom Waits. The restaurant has a unique history, having appeared in many other films, such as “Heat,” “The Game,” “License To Drive,” “My Stepmother Is An Alien,” “What’s Love Got To Do With It,” “One Hour Photo” and many more. In 2007, the building was demolished. However, Bob’s Big Boy purchased the property years later and rebuilt it based on the original blueprints and even some of the same materials. So what stands now closely resembles what was seen in the film.
The 1987 horror sequel, “House II: The Second Story” was, like the original film, shot primarily in Southern California. This time the setting was a property known as the Stimson House, located near Mt. Saint Mary’s University.
The same house was featured in the film “After Midnight,” as well as such TV series as “Mad Men,” “Pushing Daises,” “The Bionic Woman” and more.
LOCATION: 2421 S Figueroa St, Los Angeles, CA 90007
The Western scene was filmed at Paramount Ranch. Unfortunately in November 2018, the ranch fell victim to wildfires and nearly every building was burnt to the ground. However, plans have been announced to rebuild the sets.
LOCATION: 2903 Cornell Rd, Agoura Hills, CA 91301 (now demolished)
The 1995 sci-fi film “Species” was filmed in Utah, Southern California and Puerto Rico. Early in the film, after escaping from a science lab, the half-human, half-alien Sil, played by Natasha Henstridge, arrives by train into Los Angeles at Union Station.
Xavier Fitch, played by Ben Kingsley, assembles a team to find Sil. They set up operations at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel. They first arrive at this alley entrance facing S Olive St. The same alley can be seen in the film “Chinatown.” There is a gate here blocking entrance into the alley, so it’s a bit tricky getting a photo.
LOCATION: Alley between 523 / 525 S Olive St, Los Angeles, CA, 90013
They are seen entering the lobby of the Millennium Biltmore, which has been featured in dozens of films, such as “Beverly Hills Cop,” “Independence Day,” “Blonde” and many more.
LOCATION: 506 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90071
The team is later seen leaving from this side of the hotel facing S Grand Ave. The same area can be seen in the films “Seven,” “A Star Is Born” and more.
LOCATION: 530 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90071
Sil gets a hotel room at this hotel in West Hollywood.
LOCATION: 7212 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90046
The club Sil heads to in search of a man is actually the lobby of the famous Pantages Theatre in Hollywood, which was heavily dressed to appear like a club. The “entrance” seen in the film is the back of the building. The theater has likewise appeared in such films as “Ed Wood,” “Once Upon A Time In… Hollywood,” “The Aviator,” “The Bodyguard,” “Batman Forever” and many more.
LOCATION: 6233 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028
Looking to mate with a human partner as soon as possible, Sil aggressively picks up a man at the club and heads back to his place. After detecting he is a diabetic, she determines he’s not a suitable partner.
LOCATION: 1500 Blue Jay Way, Los Angeles, CA 90069
After getting into an accident, Sil meets another man she quickly tries to seduce. Just as she is about to have sex with him at his house, Preston and Laura, played by Michael Madsen and Marg Helgenberger respectively, catch up to her at the home, located in Pacific Palisades.
LOCATION: 14458 Rustic Creek Ln, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272
After Sil escapes, she returns back to the home in a car to observe Xavier Fitch’s team investigating the scene. This is a bit of movie magic as the road actually dead ends just a couple houses down into a cul-de-sac, so Sil would not have been able to approach the home from this direction. The team is seen driving past her vehicle, which in reality, they’d likewise be driving straight into the dead end.
The 2004 drama “Mysterious Skin,” while set in the town of Hutchinson, Kansas, like most films by Gregg Araki, it was actually filmed in Southern California, primarily around the San Fernando Valley.
Early in the film, a young boy, Neil, is taken by his mother, played by Elizabeth Shue, to a little league baseball field back in the early 1980s. These scenes were filmed at Balboa Park in Encino. Its a fairly large park and it shows up in numerous scenes throughout the film, so we’ll attempt to identify where inside the park different scenes take place. Young Neil first sees the coach at the baseball fields. The field used in the scene is nearest to the basketball courts, with GPS coordinates around 34.174865, -118.504439.
LOCATION: Balboa Park, Encino, CA 91316 (nearest address is 17015 Burbank Blvd, Encino, CA 91316)
A teenage Neil, played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, hustles at the playground of the same park. It has since been remodeled some. The GPS coordinates are around 34.173486, -118.505016.
Later in the film, as Neil walks away from this building to catch a ride, he shouts that he is sick of his town. This too was shot at Balboa Park, at the parking lot near the soccer fields. The GPS coordinates are around 34.176277, -118.504659.
In the 2014 remake of “Robocop,” police officers drive this Taurus Cruiser. The vehicle could be found on display at the Peterson Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, California, which ran an exhibit entitled “Hollywood Dream Machines: Vehicles Of Science Fiction and Fantasy” from May 2019 through May 2020.
LOCATION: Peterson Automotive Museum, 6060 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036