Family Matters

The house from the TV show “Family Matters” is another unfortunate case of a piece of television history being destroyed.  While the actual filming of the show took place at Warner Bros. Studios in Burbank, California, the series was set in the suburbs of Chicago, Illinois.  This home, located in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago, was used for exterior shots of the Winslow residence on the show.

Looking to convert the house into a multi-unit property, the homeowners decided renovation would not adequately suit their plans, so a full-blown demolition was approved by the city in late 2017.  The homeowners have stated that they will leave a photo of the original home, as well as photos of the cast of the show on the new property’s entryway, which will likely provide little solace to fans of the show.

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LOCATION: 1516 W Wrightwood Ave, Chicago, IL 60614 (now demolished)

Saved By The Bell

The original “Saved By the Bell”  show taped at Sunset-Gower Studios in Hollywood, California.  Those sets are long since gone, but that didn’t stop the next best thing from happening; a full blown, pop-up restaurant, inspired by the show.  Recreating many of the classic sets, Saved By the Max was created with participation and support from NBC and first opened in Chicago, Illinois (1941 W North Ave, Chicago, IL 60622), where it ran for a year, before relocating to Los Angeles, California, where it is also currently slated to run for one year.

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LOCATION: 7100 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90046

The restaurant is well designed, capturing many of the little details of The Max.  It is a full service restaurant, serving burgers, shakes and many other foods.  Occasionally cast members from the show even make appearances.

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Not an actual, functioning door.  In fact, even the window is not real.

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The classic jukebox from the show.

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And of course the arcade machines.

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A DJ station for KKTY Bayside.

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Some oversized heads of the cast for visitors to use for photo ops.

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A look at the kitchen.

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The merch area, where you can buy hoodies, t-shirts, slap bracelets and more.

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Visitors can also choose to dine in Mr. Belding’s office.

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Sections of the restaurant even tried to recreate portions of Bayside High.

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Here we see the lockers of all of the cast.  Zack, Slater, Kelly, Screech, Jessie, Lisa and even Tori.

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There’s even a “Belding stinks” sticker on the bathroom door, a nice touch.

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Some props and merchandise from the original show, including menus for The Max, dolls, the Saved By the Bell board game, a copy of the Bayside Breeze newspaper and much more.

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There are a few locations in the real world that were used for the show, but these were limited to the TV movies, which came after the original show and could no longer utilize the former sets.  In “Saved By the Bell: Wedding in Las Vegas,” this Pacific Palisades home is shown the be the house of Zack Morris.  Throughout the main run of the show, Zack’s house was always a set.  This same house was also seen in the horror film “Ghost In The Machine.”

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LOCATION: 510 Frontera Dr, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272

There is also a shot in the movie showing Palisades High School as the famous Bayside High School.  This is the only time, aside from a couple establishing shots during Season 1, an exterior high school shot was ever used.  Again, in the original show, it was always a set.  The same school was used in the original 1976 “Carrie,” the 2003 remake of “Freaky Friday” and many more films.

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LOCATION: 15777 Bowdoin St, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272

For those wondering, the Malibu Sands Resort was filmed at the Annenberg Community Beach House at 415 Pacific Coast Hwy, Santa Monica, CA 90402.  It has since been heavily remodeled and looks nothing like it did on the show.

 

High Fidelity (2000)

Championship Vinyl, where John Cusack’s character works in the 2000 film “High Fidelity,” was not a real record store.  In fact, for many years after the film completed production, the location sat closed and boarded up.  Found in the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois, it is now once again being occupied by a local business.

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LOCATION: 1514 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60622

Home Alone (1990)

If there’s one location that should someday be converted into a tourist attraction, it would probably be the house from Home Alone.  A truly iconic film spot, it seems an exercise in futility to try to manage a private life at the residence, yet to this day, it does indeed remain private.  The house can be found in the quiet neighborhood of Winnetka, IL, a bit north of Chicago.

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LOCATION: 671 Lincoln Ave, Winnetka, IL 60093

They left the garage door open, just like in the film.

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The church from the film can be found over in Wilmette, IL.  This is the Trinity United Methodist Church, which was used as the exterior location for the film.  The interior of the church was actually an entirely separate location; the Grace Episcopal Church (924 Lake St., Oak Park, IL 60301).

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LOCATION: 1024 Lake Ave, Wilmette, IL 60091

Some props from the film and it’s sequel can be found on display at Planet Hollywood in Florida.

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LOCATION: 1506 E Buena Vista Dr, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Related articles: Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1992)

The Dark Knight (2008)

“The Dark Knight” famously used the streets of Chicago to double as Gotham City.  Here we’ll take a closer look at the locations of Christopher Nolan’s classic crime drama, as well as a few iconic props from the film.

This is the street corner where The Joker stands at the opening of the film, holding his mask in his hand.

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LOCATION: Southwest corner of S Franklin St. and W Van Buren St., Chicago, IL 60607

The bank from the opening bank robbery was shot at the Old Chicago Post Office.

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LOCATION: 433 W Van Buren St., Chicago, IL 60607 (NOTE: the film shot from the northern corner of W Van Buren St. and Canal St.)

The spot where The Joker’s crew ascend onto the bank’s rooftop.

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LOCATION: 420 W Van Buren St., Chicago, IL 60606

The station where Batman rides his Batpod in pursuit of The Joker is part of Chicago’s Metra rail.

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LOCATION: Mellennium Station, 151 E Randolph St., Chicago, IL 60601 (Note: This cannot be seen from the street, you must head below into the station.)

Here is a look at the Batpod used in the film.  You can see it on display as part of the Warner Bros. Studio tour.

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One of the film’s most famous locations is where the Batman / Joker confrontation takes place on the streets, with the semi truck flip.  (Note: This same location was also used in Brian De Palma’s film, “The Untouchables.”)

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LOCATION: S La Salle St., facing the Chicago Board of Trade Building, 141 W Jackson Blvd., Chicago, IL 60604

Here’s a look at the Batmobile Tumbler, used in both “Batman Begins” and “The Dark Knight.”  It is also on display at Warner Bros. Studios, as part of their tour.

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You can also see Christian Bale’s Batman costume from “The Dark Knight” on display on the studio tour.

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Last but not least, the Bat Signal, also on display on the Warner Bros. Studio tour.

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Related articles:

The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

Married With Children

The majority of this ’90s staple was filmed in various studios around Los Angeles for the run of the series.  A couple spots, however, can be found in the Chicago area.

The famous fountain in the show’s opening credits is Buckingham Fountain, located inside of Grant Park, Chicago.  The fountain is quite large, bigger than you might expect if you’ve never seen it in person.

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LOCATION: 501 S Columbus Dr., Chicago, IL 60605

The Bundy house can be found in a quiet neighborhood a bit north of Chicago, up in Deerfield, IL.  It still pretty closely resembles how it appeared in the show.

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LOCATION: 641 Castlewood Ln., Deerfield, IL 60015

Lastly, we leave you with Peggy Bundy’s costume from the show, as seen on the Sony Pictures Studio Tour.

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