In the opening of the 1992 comedy “Sister Act,” a flashback scene is shown at “Saint Anne’s Academy” in 1968. A young Deloris, Goldberg’s character, is seen misbehaving in a Catholic school. The building can be found in Reno, Nevada.
LOCATION: 310 W 2nd St, Reno, NV 89503
An adult Deloris is now a singer in Reno, Nevada. Early in the film, the famous Reno Arch is prominently featured.
LOCATION: 155 N Virginia St, Reno, NV 89501
After witnessing a murder, Deloris goes to a police station. They agree to put her under witness protection until she can testify in court.
LOCATION: 50 S Virginia St, Reno, NV 89501
The exterior of the church where Deloris becomes a nun is the St Paul’s Catholic Church, which can be found in San Fransisco.
The 1932 Laurel & Hardy film “The Music Box” won the Academy Award for Best Short Subject. The stairs from the film still exist in Los Angeles. Named the “Music Box Steps,” they can be found in the neighborhood of Silver Lake. For those interested, the film can be found online for free.
LOCATION: Music Box Steps, Los Angeles, CA 90026 (between 923 / 935 N Vendome St, Los Angeles, CA 90026, at the intersection of Del Monte Dr / N Vendome St)
The idea for the film came about when a writer for director Hal Roach passed by the stairs and thought it would be amusing to see Laurel & Hardy try to carry something heavy up them. The property on the right existed at the time of the film, but the area to the left was just empty land.
The median in the road on the right can be seen in the film.
The stairs consist of 131 steps.
At the top of the stairs is not a house, as depicted in the film. Those scenes were shot on the Hal Roach Studio lot. At the real location, there is another street at the top of the stairs. Both the top and bottom of the stairs have a street sign for the Music Box Steps.
At the base of the stairs, there is a plaque commemorating the film. However, it has become worn and faded, making it difficult to read.
The stairs can either be accessed from N Vendome St at the bottom or Descanso Dr at the top.
The 2007 Farrelly Brothers comedy “The Heartbreak Kid” was filmed in both Northern and Southern California, as well as in Mexico. The opening shot of the film takes place on the Golden Gate bridge in San Fransisco.
LOCATION: Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, CA
Eddie, played by Ben Stiller, has pie with Lila, played by Malin Akerman. The interiors were filmed at the former Quality Cafe in Downtown Los Angeles. The cafe 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 (much like Johnie’s Coffee Shop in mid-town L.A.). Unless the building was being set up for a production, most of the time it was closed up and locked by a large metal door covering the front windows. So catching a glimpse of it was rare. 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.
LOCATION: 1238 W 7th St, Los Angeles, CA 90017 (now closed and heavily remodeled)
Late in the film, Eddie sneaks back into the United States from Mexico, in search of Miranda, played by Michelle Monaghan. He visits her parents’ house, supposedly located in Mississippi. The real home can be found in Pasadena.
LOCATION: 1480 N Michigan Ave, Pasadena, CA 91104
Eddie then finds Miranda’s house, also supposedly located in Mississippi but actually found in Pasadena.
LOCATION: 939 N Hill Ave, Pasadena, CA 91104
The filming angles were clearly chosen as to avoid showing the mountains and palm trees in the distance.
The 1996 Robert Rodriguez film “From Dusk Till Dawn,” written by Quentin Tarantino, is set in Texas and Mexico. Production actually took place at neither, however. Instead, the film was shot primarily in California.
In the opening scene, the Gecko Brothers, Seth and Richie, played by George Clooney and Quentin Tarantino respectively, visit Benny’s World of Liquor. The same location also appeared in “Terminator 2: Judgement Day” and still stands today. The building can be found in Lancaster, California.
LOCATION: 46551 140th St E, Lancaster, CA 93535
Here is the area next to the building, where Texas Ranger Earl McGraw, played by Michael Parks, first arrives, much in the same way he does (as the same character) in “Kill Bill.” The church he visits in that film is also located in Lancaster, just minutes away from this location.
Seth and Richie speed off down 140th St E as the opening credits begin.
The Dew Drop Motel where the Gecko Brothers meets Jacob, played by Harvey Keitel, can be found in Mojave. The same motel, actually called the Budget Inn Motel, was featured in the film “Nocturnal Animals.” Other than some slight renovations to the front of the motel, it still looks similar to how it appeared in the film.
LOCATION: 16698 Sierra Hwy Mojave, CA 93501
The restaurant where Jacob eats with his daughter Kate and son Scott, played by Juliette Lewis and Ernie Liu respectively, has since been demolished. It was formerly located Victorville, on I-15 Frontage Rd, just off Interstate 15. Here is where the building once stood.
LOCATION: GPS coordinates: 34.557037, -117.287256 (nearest address is around 16801 I-15 Frontage Rd, Victorville, CA 92394)
The Titty Twister bar and strip club is not located in Mexico, as depicted in the film. It was a set built on a dry lake bed in Yermo, just off Interstate 15, near Calico Blvd and Ghost Town Rd. There are, of course, no longer any remnants of the set. However, the mountains in the background allow the ability to coordinate where the sets approximately stood. Facing west on the lake bed, looking towards Ghost Town Rd is where the Titty Twister was located.
LOCATION: GPS coordinates: 34.915563, -116.876034 (near Calico Blvd / Ghost Town Rd, Yermo, CA 92398)
Looking the opposite direction is where the dirt path up to the bar was located. There is of course no Aztec temple to be found there, which was a visual effect.
The third installment in the “Crocodile Dundee” trilogy, “Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles,” was primarily filmed exactly where the title suggests. Early in the film, when Mick Dundee, played by Paul Hogan, arrives into the city, numerous landmarks are shown, such as Angels Flight, also seen in the film “La La Land.”
LOCATION: 50 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90013
Another iconic location seen in the montage is Randy’s Donuts, featured in countless films, such as “Iron Man 2,” “Get Shorty,” “2012,” “Dope” and “The Golden Child.”
LOCATION: 805 W Manchester Blvd, Inglewood, CA 90301
Sue, played by Linda Kozlowski, walks with Jean, played by Aida Turturro around Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills. The two discuss how they might be onto a big news story about an upstart film company acting as a front for criminal activity.
LOCATION: Dayton Way / N Rodeo Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Paramount Studios is seen several times in the film, as Dundee becomes a mole to uncover the crime activities of a movie company shooting on the lot.
LOCATION: 5555 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038
Dundee is seen walking with his family near the B tank and water tower on the Paramount lot.
Dundee and his friend Jacko mistakenly enter a gay bar, which was filmed at Boardner’s bar in Hollywood. The same bar appeared in the film “Ed Wood.”
LOCATION: 1652 N Cherokee Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90028
The 2007 David Fincer film “Zodiac” is primarily set in the San Fransisco Bay area. However, production was split between Northern and Southern California, with quite a few scenes shot in the Greater Los Angeles area. Early in the film, a couple drives to this diner, located in Long Beach, where the woman says it’s too crowded and decides to go some place quiet.
LOCATION: 4390 Atlantic Ave, Long Beach, CA 90807
Robert Graysmith, played by Jake Gyllenhaal, lives in a house that is only seen from interior views in the film. However, a couple shots help pinpoint the neighborhood to Angelino Heights in Los Angeles. For example, the street outside of his home can be seen here when he takes his son to school early in the film.
LOCATION: Near the intersection of Douglas St / Kellam Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90026 (approximately in front of 1406 Kellam Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90026)
Robert works as a cartoonist at the San Fransisco Chronicle. For exterior shots, the real newspaper building was used.
LOCATION: 901 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94103
The Zodiac kills a taxi driver at the corner of Washington and Cherry in San Fransisco. This film shot at the real location where the murder took place. The location is revisited several times in the film, as the characters hope the killer might return to the site on the anniversary of his crimes.
LOCATION: 3893 Washington St, San Francisco, CA 94118
Robert stops his son from getting on the school bus at this location. This is again in the Angelino Heights neighborhood, just around the corner from the spot where he drives his son to school early in the film.
LOCATION: Near the intersection of Douglas St / Kellam Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90026 (approximately in front of 908 Douglas St, Los Angeles, CA 90026)
Detectives visit the house of Melvin Belli, played by Brian Cox, after the Zodiac writes him a letter. Belli’s house is located in Hancock Park at 72 Fremont Pl, Los Angeles, CA 90005, but unfortunately the house is in one of the few gated communities in Los Angeles and therefore inaccessible to the public.
Paul Avery, played by Robert Downey Jr., has an argument with Inspector David Toschi, played by Mark Ruffalo, outside of the Riverside Police Department. The building used in the scene is actually located in Culver City. The same location was also featured in the film “The Lincoln Lawyer.”
LOCATION: 4130 Overland Ave, Culver City, CA 90230
A time lapse is shown of the construction of the Transamerica Pyramid building. This was of course a CGI creation.
LOCATION: 600 Montgomery St, San Francisco, CA 94111
Robert approaches Inspector Toschi at the Earl Warren Building in San Fransisco, seeking more information on the case. Toschi lets Robert know the case is unlikely to ever be solved at that point and tells him to not disturb him anymore.
LOCATION: 350 McAllister St, San Francisco, CA 94102
The building is located next to San Fransisco City Hall, which can be seen in the background of some shots.
The Vallejo Police Department, where Robert obtains more information on the case, could be found in Hawthorne. It was a real police building, also featured in the TV series “True Blood” and the second season of “True Detective.” The building has since been demolished.
LOCATION: 4440 W 126th St, Hawthorne, CA 90250 (now demolished)
Near the end of the film, Robert tracks down a suspect he believes may be the Zodiac working inside this hardware store in South Gate. The building is only seen from interior views in the film.
The 2003 Rob Zombie horror film “House Of 1000 Corpses” was shot entirely in Southern California. Captain Spaulding’s “Museum of Monsters and Madmen” was filmed at the Four Aces Movie Ranch in Palmdale, California. The set has been seen in countless films, such as “Identity,” “Palm Springs” and “Faster.” It has also appeared in such TV shows as “Twin Peaks” and “Buffy The Vampire Slayer,” as well as numerous commercials and music videos.
Please keep in mind the property is private and there are “no trespassing” signs posted. However, it is easily visible from the road. The set is a popular filming location, so you may encounter a shoot in progress when you visit. If it’s a particularly secretive set, sometimes the roads next to it are closed off to the public.
LOCATION: Four Aces Movie Ranch, 14499 E Ave Q, Palmdale, CA 93591
The Firefly house was another set, this time located on Universal Studios Hollywood lot, where it can be seen as part of their studio tour. The same house facade was featured in the film “The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas.”
LOCATION: 100 Universal City Plaza, Universal City, CA 91608
Also on the Universal lot is the house of Don Willis. The same house was featured on the classic television series “Leave It To Beaver.”
In the 1989 comedy “Turner & Hooch,” the City Hall where Scott Turner, played by Tom Hanks, works can be found in the small Central California town of Pacific Grove. The building is now a bank, although much of the exterior remains similar to how it appeared in the film.
LOCATION: 569 Lighthouse Ave, Pacific Grove, CA 93950
A wedding takes place across the street at this building, which is supposed to be a church in the film. Hooch the dog, looking out the window from the City Hall building, spots his owner’s murderer in the crowd outside of the church and begins frantically barking. This building is now also a bank.
LOCATION: 580 Lighthouse Ave, Pacific Grove, CA 93950
The used car lot from the 1980 comedy “Used Cars,” starring Kurt Russell, was actually a set, built on a then empty space in Mesa, Arizona. Due to the fact it was constructed on a major road, the location presented numerous logistical issues during production. It has long since been removed and an apartment complex now stands in its place. Here is what the former space looks like now.
LOCATION: 944 W Main St, Mesa, AZ 85201 (demolished)