Fast Times At Ridgemont High (1982)

The 80s comedy “Fast Times at Ridgemont High,” like so many other films of that era, shot in the San Fernando Valley, north of Los Angeles, California.

The mall scenes in the film were shot at the Sherman Oaks Galleria, which has since been completely remodeled and looks nothing like it did in the film, so we’ve opted to omit it here.  However, it can be found at 15301 Ventura Blvd, Sherman Oaks, CA 91403.

The titular Ridgemont High was primarily filmed at Van Nuys High School in Van Nuys, California, with a few additional scenes shot at Canoga Park High School and James Monroe High School.  The same high school was used in the films “Christine,” “Sleepwalkers,” “Rock ‘N’ Roll High School” and many more.

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LOCATION: Van Nuys High School, 6535 Cedros Ave, Van Nuys, CA 91411

Brad, played by Judge Reinhold, and Stacy Hamilton, played by Jennifer Jason Leigh, live at this house in West Hills. Many scenes were filmed inside the house, including the infamous scene of Brad masturbating in the bathroom.

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LOCATION: 24124 Welby Way, West Hills, CA 91307

The house is of course mostly remembered for the topless pool scene with Phoebe Cates. That scene really was filmed at the pool in the back yard, which remains more or less the same as it appeared in the film, aside from the diving board being removed. The changing room was also not authentic to the home. It was a exterior facade built by the production, while the interiors shot on a studio set.

Here is an alternate view of the pool. There are also public real estate listings available online, offering many ground level views of the pool and back yard.

“The Point,” where Stacy loses her virginity later in the film, was shot at the Mid Valley Youth Baseball fields in Encino.  There are quite a number of fields here, which can be confusing, but each of them is numbered.  The field from the film is field 4 and the dugout from the film is the third base dugout.

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LOCATION: 17301 Oxnard St, Encino, CA 91316

The Bad News Bears (1979)

The original version of “The Bad News Bears” shot at Mason Park in Chatsworth, California.  The field was mostly unchanged for the production, with the biggest addition being a fence.  The field still exists today, though it has been heavily remodeled.  Curiously, there isn’t even so much as a sign denoting the field’s connection with the film.  You would think the parks and recreation would better embrace their history.

Los Angeles appears to better acknowledge their film history.  There is a field in the city actually named The Bad News Bears Field (1411 S Sepulveda Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90025).  While no filming took place at the L.A. field, it also has a connection with the film.  Screenwriter Bill Lancaster enrolled his son in little league at the field.  He drew upon the experiences as the basis for the film’s screenplay.

Below is a photo of the Chatsworth field, where the film was shot.  Note that there are two baseball fields at the park.  The one used in the film is the one nearest to Mason Ave, not the one near Fullbright Ave. The field also appeared in parts of the sequel “Bad News Bears in Breaking Training.”

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LOCATION: 10500 Mason Ave, Chatsworth, CA 91311

Field Of Dreams (1989)

Hidden away in the rural Iowa countryside, you’ll find an oasis for movie lovers; the Field of Dreams.  Today, the house and field, still owned by the same family as when filming took place, is operated as a tourist attraction, with business hours and a gift shop.  Visitors are even welcome to play baseball on the actual field from the film.  Prospective visitors should take note, however, that the field is closed during the winter months, with visitation season limited to April through November.

LOCATION: 28995 Lansing Rd., Dyersville, IA 52040

Upon arrival, you’ll see this sign for the property.

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The house from the film, along with the gift shop, which was constructed in the style of the barn in the background.

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A closer look at the gift shop, which sells lots of merchandise related to the film, ranging from clothing to cups to baseballs.  The shop is operated by the property owners, who are happy to chat with you about the film and the site.

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A closer look at the farm house from the film, which now has the name of the film added onto the picket fence.  Visitors were not permitted to enter the house at the time we visited, but the property owners have since changed that policy and opened up the house up to paid tours.

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The house and the bleachers.

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A closer look at the bleachers, which really are the originals from the film.

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And of course, the baseball field.  The field was constructed for the film, with the lights still in tact.  What was not there at the time of our visit, however, was the corn field, which was actually grown by the production.  However, since that time, the property owner have once again grown corn fields on the property, to more closely resemble the film.  As stated before, visitors are welcome to play baseball on the field, if you want to add that item to your bucket list.  Be sure to bring your own equipment, however, if you want to play and be prepared to possibly wait awhile for your turn, as the field receives a steady amount of visitors.

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A sign on the site, with a history of the property, photos and trivia about the film.

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The back of the sign, with more photos and trivia.

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The site remains unique amongst film locations, due to the mystique and magic of the film itself.  Traveling into rural Iowa to stand in person at this site, which so closely resembles the way it looked in the film, really does feel like stepping into a movie.  It’s not heaven, it’s Iowa… and people will come indeed.