Inception (2010)

The 2010 Christopher Nolan film “Inception” shot in a variety of locations around the world, including France, England, Japan, Morocco, Canada and the United States.  Quite a few scenes were filmed around Southern California.

At this intersection in Downtown Los Angeles, Cobb, played by Leonardo DiCaprio, goes over plans with his team to execute a mission within a dream.

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LOCATION: Wilshire Blvd / Hope St, Los Angeles, CA 90017

Directly across the street are the corner steps where Cobb picks up a man in a taxi and kidnaps him.  The same steps were used in “The Social Network,” when Jesse Eisenberg shows up to a business meeting wearing a robe.

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LOCATION: 707 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90017

Cobb’s wife Mal, played by Marion Cotillard, believing she’s trapped in a dream and will only awaken by leaping to her death, sits on the ledge of this building.

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LOCATION: 215 W 5th St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

Cobb walks with Mal though a deep dream state called “limbo,” where the dreamers risk being unable to awaken.  This area is part of The Music Center building in Downtown Los Angeles, facing toward The John Ferraro Building.  Cobb also walks with Ariadne, played by Ellen Page, through the same area.

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LOCATION: 135 N Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Cobb and Ariadne continue walking through the surreal landscape, where old houses are seen partially submerged in water.  This was filmed at The John Ferraro Building, which has been featured in countless films and television shows, such as “The Nice Guys,” “Hancock,” “The Omega Man” and more.  The buildings submerged in water were CGI, replacing the L.A. skyline on the left, but the section of the Ferraro Building on the right side is the real location seen in the film.

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LOCATION: 111 N Hope St, Los Angeles, CA 90012

(500) Days Of Summer (2009)

Marc Webb’s 2009 romantic comedy “(500) Days of Summer” was filmed all around Southern California.  Summer, played by Zooey Deschanel, lives at this apartment, known as The Barclay.  The same building was featured in another Zooey Deschanel film, “Yes Man,” co-starring Jim Carrey, who is seen talking a suicidal jumper off a ledge around the corner from this entrance.

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LOCATION: 706 Normandie Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90005

Tom, played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, is seen walking along Normandie Ave in front of Summer’s apartment.  The filmmakers actually composited a skyline view of downtown L.A. into the horizon, which is not actually visible from the street.

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Tom and Summer break up at the former Quality Cafe in Downtown Los Angeles.  The diner was a one-time staple of films, appearing in “Seven,” “Training Day,” “Ghost World,” “Catch Me If You Can,” “Million Dollar Baby” and dozens more.  However, it was not an actual restaurant open to the public.  Instead it was used solely for filming.  Sadly, it ceased to function as a filming location and was completely renovated in 2014.  The property no longer bears any resemblance to how it appeared in so many films.

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LOCATION: 1238 W 7th St, Los Angeles, CA 90017 (now closed and heavily remodeled)

Tom and Summer rent an adult movie from this building in Downtown Los Angeles.  The same building was used as the bank in “Killing Zoe.”

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LOCATION: 401 S Main St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

The fountain where Tom begins to dance is the Arthur J. Will Memorial Fountain in Grand Park in Downtown L.A.  The same fountain was seen in “Pretty Woman.”

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LOCATION: Arthur J. Will Memorial Fountain, Los Angeles, CA 90012

The bench where the couple sits and looks over the city is another sad story of a film location soon to be lost.  The bench was located in a small park area once known as Angels Knoll in Los Angeles, California, now called Angels Landing.  Located directly beside Angels Flight from “La La Land,” the bench attracted many visitors after the release of the film, who enjoyed recreating the famous shot.

Sadly in 2013, the City of Los Angeles permanently closed the park, blocking it off with fencing and no trespassing signs.  Many years passed while the area sat unused and inaccessible to the public.  During this time, the Angels Flight was thankfully restored at put back into operation, so film lovers can at least rejoice that fact.  The fate of the “500 Days” bench and the Angels Knoll park in general was less optimistic, however.  While the area can still be seen, either through the fencing, or from the restaurant area overlooking the park, it is no longer possible to get an up close shot like seen in the film.

Plans have since been announced for a high rise to be built in place of the park, but for now, the area still remains vacant and fenced off.  Here we take a look back to when the park and bench were still open and accessible.

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There was even a plaque on the bench commemorating the film, which read “Tom’s favorite place becomes one of Summer’s too.”  While the bench is still there (for now), the plaque has been removed.

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LOCATION: 356 S Olive St, Los Angeles, CA 90013 (permanently closed, soon to be demolished)

Tom’s apartment can be found in Downtown Los Angeles.

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LOCATION: 432 S Main St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

Rachel, played by Chloë Grace Moretz, lives at this house in the Eagle Rock neighborhood of Los Angeles, seen briefly in the film.  It sits directly next door to the house of Dave Chappelle’s character in “A Star Is Born.”

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LOCATION: 5231 Shearin Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90041

Tom attends Millie’s wedding at the Point Fermin Lighthouse in San Pedro.  This is located very near the Korean Bell of Friendship from “The Usual Suspects.”

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LOCATION: 807 W Paseo Del Mar, San Pedro, CA 90731

Near the end of the film, Tom has an interview at the Bradbury Building in Downtown L.A., famous of course for it’s use in “Blade Runner.”

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LOCATION: 304 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90013