Ed Wood (1994)

Tim Burton’s 1994 film “Ed Wood,” starring Johnny Depp as the notorious, titular filmmaker, was mostly shot around Hollywood, California.

After the premiere of Ed’s play “The Casual Company,” he and the cast read the scathing reviews at Boardner’s bar in Hollywood. The same bar appeared in the film “Crocodile Dundee In Los Angeles.”

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LOCATION: 1652 N Cherokee Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90028

Ed sees Bela Lugosi, played by Martin Landau, at a funeral parlor.  This was filmed at the doorway to the left of Boardner’s, which has no distinguishable separate address.

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Bela Lugosi’s house can be found in Gardena.

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LOCATION: 1933 W 147th St, Gardena, CA 90249

Ed’s first apartment can be found in Hollywood.

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LOCATION: 448 N Ogden Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90036

Bela Lugosi delivers a speech to his fans here.

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LOCATION: 1714 Wilcox Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90028

This building served as Ed’s second apartment.

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LOCATION: 6383 Yucca St, Los Angeles, CA 90028

Wood visits this church in Toluca Lake to get baptized, in order to obtain funding for his next film.

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LOCATION: 4301 Cahuenga Blvd, Toluca Lake, CA 91602

Ed Wood meets Orson Welles, played by Vincent D’Onofrio, at Musso Frank & Grill in Hollywood.  The restaurant has popped up in numerous films, including “Once Upon A Time In… Hollywood,” “Ocean’s Eleven” and “Swingers,” as well as the TV shows “Mad Men” and “Bosch.”

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LOCATION: 6667 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028

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The premiere of “Plan 9 from Outer Space” takes place at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood.  The famous theater likewise appeared in “Once Upon A Time In… Hollywood,” as well as such films as “The Aviator,” “The Bodyguard,” “Species,” “Batman Forever” and many more.  Only the exterior of the Pantages was used.  The interiors were filmed at the Orpheum Theatre in Downtown Los Angeles (842 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90014).

LOCATION: 6233 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028

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True Romance (1993)

In the 1993 Tony Scott directed, Quentin Tarantino penned film, “True Romance,” the outlaw couple of Clarence, played by Christian Slater and Alabama, played by Patricia Arquette, supposedly meet in Detroit.  In reality, most of the film was shot in Southern California.

In the opening scene of the film, Clarence sits at a bar and talks about Elvis. These scenes were filmed in San Fernando. The bar is only seen from interior views in the film, but you’ll see the distinctive glass block windows match up to those visible behind Clarence in the film.

LOCATION: 1113 San Fernando Rd, San Fernando, CA 91340

Early in the film, Clarence and Alabama watch a Sonny Chiba “Street Fighter” triple feature together.  This was filmed at the Vista Theater, one of L.A.’s best vintage theaters.

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LOCATION: 4473 Sunset Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90027

After the movies, the couple goes for coffee and pie at Rae’s Restaurant in Santa Monica.  The restaurant has been used in countless films, such as “Lords Of Dogtown,” “Bowfinger” and “Starsky & Hutch.”

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LOCATION: 2901 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90405

The comic book store, “Heroes For Sale,” where Clarence works, was actually “Fantastic Store,” a former comic book, music and vintage store located near the famous intersection of Hollywood Blvd and Highland Ave in Hollywood.  The store has unfortunately long since closed and bears little resemblance to how it appeared in the film.

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LOCATION: 1718 N Highland Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90028

The billboard location where the two sit outside and talk could be found in downtown Los Angeles at the Dewey Hotel Apartments.  Unfortunately, there is no longer an actual billboard on the side of the building.

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LOCATION: 721 S Main St, Los Angeles, CA 90014

The building where Drexl, played by Gary Oldman, resides was a combination of two locations.  The exterior was located in Downtown Detroit, Michigan.  It was demolished in the 1990s, to make way for a football stadium.  The interior living room, where Clarence confronts Drexl, was actually shot on the other side of the country, back in Los Angeles.  Known as The Beckett Mansion, the property, located in the West Adams neighborhood, actually operates as an event space and filming location year round.  The same house has been featured in Rob Zombie’s “Halloween,” “Neighbors,” “No Strings Attached” and many more.  It’s also located directly across the street from the house from “The People Under The Stairs.”

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LOCATION: 2218 S Harvard Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90018

The apartment of Floyd and Dick Ritche, played by Brad Pitt and Michael Rapaport respectively, can be found in Hollywood. The scenes were filmed on the upper level unit of the Krotona Apartments. Tarantino himself lived at Krotona Apartments for a time, staying on the couch of writer-director Scott Spiegel, much like Floyd in the film. The apartment is seen only from interior views in the film. This area is on the side of the building.

LOCATION: 2122 Vista Del Mar Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90068

Clarence calls Dick Ritchie from a payphone in the desert. The building in the shot has long since been demolished and now its just an empty plot of land. The mountains in the distance can be seen behind Clarence and Alabama in the payphone in multiple shots.

LOCATION: 17012 E Palmdale Blvd Palmdale, CA 93591 (now demolished)

The scene took place near the intersection of 170th St E and E Palmdale Blvd in Palmdale.

The foundation where the building stood still exists.

Dick Ritchie auditions for a role on “T.J. Hooker” at the majestic Castle Green Apartments in Pasadena. The scene was shot on the bridge of Castle Green facing S Raymond Ave. The location is only seen from interior views in the film.

LOCATION: 99 S Raymond Ave, Pasadena, CA 91105

Here’s a closer look at the hallway, which leads into what would have been the casting office in the film. Castle Green has been featured in countless films, such as “The Sting,” “Wild At Heart,” “The Little Rascals,” “Deja Vu,” “Sneakers,” “Bugsy,” “The Last Samurai” and many more.

Later in the film, the couple stays at this motel, supposedly located on the Sunset Strip.  The real motel, the Safari Inn, is actually located just north of L.A., in Burbank, California.

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LOCATION: 1911 W Olive Ave, Burbank, CA 91506

The same motel was featured in the films “Apollo 13” and “Coach Carter.”

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The final drug deal takes place at the fictional Beverly Ambassador Hotel. The exterior used in the film is The Athenaeum, an event venue at Caltech in Pasadena. The same building was featured in the films “Beverly Hills Cop” and “Beverly Hills Cop II.” The interiors were filmed at the former Ambassador Hotel (3400 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90010), which has since been demolished.

LOCATION: 551 S Hill Ave, Pasadena, CA 91106

Lost Highway (1997)

David Lynch’s underappreciated masterpiece “Lost Highway” shot around Southern California, Death Valley and the Nevada desert.

Early in the film, Fred and Renee, played by Bill Pullman and Patricia Arquette respectively, receive a mysterious video tape at their doorstep.  David Lynch used what was, at that time, his own home as the location.

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LOCATION: 7035 Senalda Rd, Los Angeles, CA 90068

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Fred plays his saxophone at the Luna Lounge.  This was filmed at the Lankershim Arts Center in North Hollywood.

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LOCATION: 5108 Lankershim Blvd, North Hollywood, CA 91601

Fred ends up on death row for the murder of his wife.  The cell block wasn’t a prison at all, rather a creative re-purposing of a decommissioned fire station in downtown Los Angeles.  The same station was used for interior scenes for the original “Ghostbusters” firehouse.  Much like that film, only the interiors were used in the film, but here is a view of the exterior.  Today, the surrounding area has become run down and it isn’t the safest of places.

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LOCATION: 225 E 5th St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

After some mysterious events, Pete, played by Balthazar Getty, awakens in Fred’s jail cell.  Baffled by this phenomenon, the police decide to release him.  Pete returns to his home, located in Northridge.

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LOCATION: 16706 Citronia St, Northridge, CA 91343

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Pete’s girlfriend Sheila, played by Natasha Gregson Wagner, lives at this house, located just a few blocks away from Pete’s place.

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LOCATION: 9532 McLennan Ave, Northridge, CA 91343

Pete works as a mechanic at Arnie’s, which was filmed at the Firestone building in Los Angeles.  No longer in service, the building, built in 1937, is designated as an historical monument by the city.

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LOCATION: 800 South La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036

The place where Mr. Eddy becomes enraged at a tailgating driver requires a bit of effort if you want to visit the location. It was filmed on Mt Hollywood Dr, near the Griffith Observatory. Contrary to what is seen in the film, the road is actually completely inaccessible to the public by vehicle.  It is found along a fully paved road, but the road is gated off in all directions from motor vehicles.  Aside from park rangers, the road is primarily used by hikers and bicyclists.

The easiest way to visit is by parking at the Griffith Observatory.  The lot at the Observatory itself is almost always full.  You’re unlikely to find a spot in the actual lot.  However, you can park along East or West Observatory Road.  Unfortunately, these are now paid parking spaces and somewhat expensive.  There are a few free auxiliary lots, but those fill up quickly as well, plus they put you pretty far away from where you need to be to get to the location.  You shouldn’t have a difficult time finding a paid parking space on Observatory Road, unless you’re arriving at peak evening hours.  Your best bet is to arrive early.

The easiest way to spot the trail head to reach the location is to look for the tunnel when approaching Griffith Observatory.  Most traffic to reach the Observatory passes through it.  The tunnel was famously seen in Back To The Future Part 2, when Biff and Marty McFly (riding a hoverboard) fight over a sports almanac.  The very first road on your right, once you pass through the tunnel, is where you will need to hike.  It will either be gated off, or if the gates are open, a guard will be parked there, making sure no motorists attempt to drive up it.  The road is freely accessible to pedestrians on foot or bike, however, and you’ll likely see a lot of both.  You simply take that road for about 0.5 miles to reach the location. At least you can take photographs in relative safely here, without concern for traffic on the road.

LOCATION: Mt Hollywood Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90027 (GPS coordinates: 34.126026, -118.306921)

It is a moderate hike.  Much of it is uphill, but considering you can walk a paved road the entire way, as well as the fact that there are resting spots, it’s certainly manageable for most.  A bottle of water should suffice, unless it’s an extremely hot day.

If you want to get the most out of your money for paying for a parking space near Griffith Observatory, we recommend continuing along the same path to the location of the dance scene in “La La Land.” That location is another 1.5 miles up the same road.

After Alice meets Pete at the mechanic’s, the pair begin an affair.  Alice is waiting at the Palm Tree Inn in North Hills, calling down to him from the second floor to say that she already got them a room.

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LOCATION: 8424 Sepulveda Blvd, North Hills, CA 91343

Pete pulls up to this spot in the parking lot, where he talks to Alice.

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The cops watch from the parking lot as the two go into the hotel room.  The same motel has also been seen in the TV series “My Name Is Earl.”

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Near the end of the film, Fred arrives at the Lost Highway Hotel.  This was actually a composite of two separate buildings.  The exterior, seen below, is an abandoned building located at Death Valley Junction, near the California / Nevada border.  The same building was seen in the 1986 film “The Hitcher.”  The interior corridors were actually filmed across the street at the Amargosa Opera House and Hotel (608 Death Valley Jct, Death Valley, CA 92328).  This area is very much in the middle of nowhere.

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LOCATION: Near the intersection of State Line Rd / CA-127, Death Valley Junction, CA 92328 (nearest address is 608 CA-127, Death Valley Junction, CA 92328)

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