Mank (2020)

The 2020 David Fincher film “Mank,” about screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz and his story of writing the screenplay for “Citizen Kane,” is set in the 1930s and 1940s, against the Hollywood studio backdrop of that era. The film likewise shot around Southern California. The movie employs heavy use of CGI to maintain the period look, often taking portions of real locations and adding computer generated elements and different backgrounds altogether. Fincher himself described the process as being as labor-intensive as a Marvel movie. It makes it challenging at times to nail down specific locations, as the real life places in present day don’t always align with what is seen in the film.

One location that matches up very well is the ranch where Mank, played by Gary Oldman, spends much of the film writing “Citizen Kane.” The Kemper Campbell Ranch in Victorville, known at the time the film takes place as the Verde Ranch, is where these scenes were shot. The ranch is, in fact, also the actual location where the real Herman J. Mankiewicz wrote much of “Citizen Kane.” Today, the property is a private estate and cattle ranch. Due to the fact that there are full-time residents living at the ranch, they unfortunately do not offer tours to the public. However, they do offer guest rentals at the property. The guest rentals are currently only available at group rates, with a two night minimum, so it can be quite a costly stay, unless you have a larger party to help split the costs. Here is the area of the ranch featured most heavily in the film, where Mank stays.

LOCATION: 10 Kemper Campbell Ranch Rd, Victorville, CA 92395

Here is a closer look at the building. The door, stairs and courtyard are all featured throughout the course of the film, as it cuts between Mank writing in 1940 and various flashback scenes throughout the 1930s.

Here is a look at one of the roads leading to the ranch, which is also seen several times in the film.

Here are some additional views of the ranch and surrounding mountains.

In a flashback scene, Mank awakens at the Hearst Castle to screams coming from outside. Here things get more complicated to match up. In the film, it is made to appear the scenes shot at the real Hearst Castle, located in San Simeon (750 Hearst Castle Rd, San Simeon, CA 93452). However, the scenes were actually shot at The Huntington Library, Art Museum and Botanical Gardens in San Marino. The southwest corner of the Huntington Art Gallery building served as the grounds of the Hearst Castle, with quite a bit of visual effects added to the shot, such as the Hearst towers and palm trees. The Huntington grounds are quite large, so we’ve provided GPS coordinates below of the exact spot.

LOCATION: 1151 Oxford Rd, San Marino, CA 91108 (GPS coordinates: 34.126274, -118.113582)

Mank follows the sound of the screams and discovers a film set, where Marion Davies, played by Amanda Seyfried, is performing a scene in which she is burned at the stake. This scene was also filmed at The Huntington Library, near the Australian Garden and Desert Garden, according to comments online. The film employs so many visual effects, adding mountains and open land, to the point that we were unable to match with certainty the exact spot the set was built.

In yet another scene at the Huntington Library, Marion walks with Mank to a fountain, where she asks him about which roles he feels she could play. The fountain can be found on the North Vista, with the GPS coordinates 34.128229, -118.113415. More visual effects were used in the scene, showing the Hearst Castle in the distance.

While at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles, Mank sees Upton Sinclair giving a political speech. The hotel is one of the most frequently used locations in all of Los Angeles, having appeared in “Ghostbusters,” “Beverly Hills Cop,” “Independence Day,” “Fight Club” and countless more productions. The interior of the hotel also appears at the end of the film, when the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay is awarded.

LOCATION: 506 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90071

Mank runs into his friend C.C. in front of Bullocks Wilshire, a famous art deco building on Wilshire Blvd in Los Angeles. Mank learns that MGM is hiring actors to play outspoken citizens against Upton Sinclair. Once a luxury department store, Bullocks Wilshire now operates as a law school. The building has also been featured in the films “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” “The Aviator” and “Dunston Checks In,” the TV series “Moonlighting” and Areosmith’s music video for “Love in an Elevator,” in addition to many other productions.

LOCATION: 3050 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90010

The Trocadero Nightclub was not a real club. The exterior location used was Cicada Restaurant in Downtown Los Angeles, with a few visual effects composited into the shot, such as the Trocadero sign. The location has been featured in countless films, such as “Once Upon A Time In… Hollywood,” “Pretty Woman,” “Mr. & Mrs. Smith,” Indecent Proposal,” Bruce Almighty” and many more, as well as such TV shows as “Mad Men, “The Morning Show” and “American Horror Story.”

LOCATION: 617 S Olive St, Los Angeles, CA 90014

After Mank tries to intervene in a potential suicide of his friend Shelly Metcalf, as he’s leaving, he drives over La Loma Bridge in Pasadena, with the Griffith Observatory visible in the distance. This is another visual effect. In reality, the Observatory is not visible from the bridge. The same bridge was featured in the film “The Little Things.”

LOCATION: La Loma Bridge, 799 La Loma Rd, Pasadena, CA 91105

Related articles: Seven (1995), The Game (1997), Fight Club (1999), Panic Room (2002), Zodiac (2007), The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button (2008), The Social Network (2010)

The Seventh Sign (1988)

In the 1988 film “The Seventh Sign,” a married couple played by Demi Moore and Michael Biehn live in this house, located in Venice, California.

LOCATION: 902 Palms Blvd, Venice, CA 90291

The couple rents out an apartment space above their garage to David Bannon, played by Jürgen Prochnow. The garage is located just behind the house, as depicted in the film. For the most part, the entire property remains similar to how it appeared in the film.

The Beverly Hillbillies

The Clampett Mansion from the classic television series “The Beverly Hillbillies” can be found in the upscale Bel-Air neighborhood of Los Angeles. Known as the Chartwell Mansion, the property has also been featured in such films as “Cinderfella,” “Over The Top,” “Armed and Dangerous,” “Disorderlies” and “High Society.” A neighboring home once owned by Ronald and Nancy Reagan was later purchased and incorporated into the same estate in 2016.

Aside from some remodeling to the roof, the exterior otherwise still appears very similar to how it did on the show. Interiors for the show were filmed at the former General Services Studios, now known as Sunset Las Palmas Studios (1040 N Las Palmas Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038). In 2019, the house sold once again for around $150 million, which according to the L.A. Times, set a record for the highest price of any home in California history.

Like many homes in the neighborhood, walls and hedges line the perimeter, eliminating any visibility from the street. The surrounding roads, which are narrow and do not allow street parking, are located near Hotel Bel-Air, with regular traffic through the streets. There are cameras peppered along every street and property, with construction crews, landscapers and security in abundance. It is a difficult spot to photograph, even managing aerial photography was a challenge. In spite of the many obstacles, here is the Clampett home, as it appears now.

LOCATION: 750 Bel Air Rd, Los Angeles, CA 90077

Related articles: The Beverly Hillbillies (1993)

A Cinderella Story (2004)

The house from the 2004 Hilary Duff film “A Cinderella Story” can be found in Altadena, California.

LOCATION: 1272 E Calaveras St, Altadena, CA 91001

Sam, played by Duff, works at this diner, located in Long Beach. The same diner has also appeared in the films “Zodiac,” “Corrina, Corrina” and “The Real McCoy.”

LOCATION: 4390 Atlantic Ave, Long Beach, CA 90807

During a masquerade ball, Sam takes a walk with Austin, played by Chad Michael Murray. This scene was filmed at the Huntington Library, Art Museum and Botanical Gardens in San Marino. The trellises they walk under can be found near the Rose Garden.

LOCATION: 1151 Oxford Rd, San Marino, CA 91108

License To Drive (1988)

The 1988 comedy “License to Drive,” starring Corey Haim and Corey Feldman, was filmed in Southern California. The high school where Les Anderson, played by Haim, sees Mercedes Lane, played by Heather Graham, being picked up by her boyfriend is Walter Reed Middle School in North Hollywood.  This same school was seen in the films “Role Models” and “Accepted,” as well as the TV shows “Malcolm in the Middle” and “7th Heaven.”

LOCATION: 4525 Irvine Ave, North Hollywood, CA 91602

Here is the house where Les lives with his family.

LOCATION: 536 Dalehurst Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90024

Here his the home where a friend of Mercedes lives.

LOCATION: 661 Woodruff Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90024

This his the house where Mercedes lives.

LOCATION: 485 Loring Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90024

Wes takes Mercedes on a date to the El Rey Theatre.

LOCATION: 5515 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036

Archie’s Atomic Drive-in restaurant, where Les and Dean, played by Corey Feldman, flee after denting the door of a nearby car was filmed at Johnie’s Broiler in Downey.  The restaurant has a unique history, having appeared in many other films, such as “Heat,” “The Game,” “Short Cuts,” “My Stepmother Is An Alien,” “One Hour Photo” and many more.  In 2007, the building was unfortunately 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.

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LOCATION: 7447 Firestone Blvd, Downey, CA 90241

Dean’s house has unfortunately been completely remodeled and no longer appears anything like how it did in the film.

LOCATION: 6313 Riggs Pl, Los Angeles, CA 90045

Cobra Kai

While set in the San Fernando Valley, much of the TV series “Cobra Kai,” which continues the story of “The Karate Kid” films, is actually filmed in the Greater Atlanta, Georgia area. There are occasional shots that do take place in California, however. One key location found in the Valley is the apartment of Johnny Lawrence, played by William Zabka.

LOCATION: 18555 Burbank Blvd, Tarzana, CA 91356

In season 1, episode 9, Johnny and Daniel Larusso, played by Ralph Macchio, visit Daniel’s former apartment, seen in the original film. The same location was used for the scene.

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LOCATION: 19223 Saticoy St, Reseda, CA 91335

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Related articles: The Karate Kid (1984)