Movies are filmed all over the world. One of the best aspects of working on a set is working on one that has a budget to accommodate all kinds of travel. The average person might think that all movies are filmed in Hollywood, either on location or on sound stages. While that is certainly true for many productions, there are plenty of productions that shoot outside of Los Angeles, and some even shoot outside of the country. Some of the most incredible, famous scenes in films have been shot at the same location – though many of you may not have noticed. Here are five locations you might recognize from your favorite film.
Number Five: Greenwich Old Royal Naval College, London. Do yourself a favor and stop by The Royal Naval College in Greenwich if you’re ever in London. The institution was founded by an Order in Council back in January of 1873 and has seen plenty of Hollywood stars walk on its grounds. Films such as Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows, The Dark Knight Rises, The Wolfman, Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Les Misérables and more have all had the pleasure of filming one or more scenes at this location. Being able to actually see the painted walls and ceiling in person is worth the trip – it’s something you have to see to believe. With all of its decor, it is truly a masterpiece, so be sure to look out for it the next time you’re watching a flick.
Number Four: Empire State Building, New York. Art deco is one of the best styles to look at, and with this glorious needle of a building, that’s what you’ll get. New York’s Empire State Building is a constant magnet for those in the film industry, having been featured in over 100 Hollywood movies. The building apparently is quite versatile in its performances, being featured in musicals as well as comedies (sometimes both in one), sweeping romances, thought-provoking art-house pictures and your standard action flicks. Woody Allen is certainly no stranger to it (Annie Hall), and neither is Martin Scorsese (New York, New York). One of the most memorable scenes in all of cinema features the Empire State Building in the final scene of the classic King Kong.
Number Three: Charles Bridge, Prague, Czech Republic. It is easy to understand why Charles Bridge is so popular among film directors when you take a walk across it. Czech king and Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV had the bridge built in 1357, with the architect Petr Parléř in charge of construction. Baroque statues and the atmosphere in general allow for a gothic feel; consider it in films like Van Helsing. The bridge itself has also been used in action movies, such as Mission: Impossible and xXx.
Number Two: Mini Hollywood, Tabernas, Spain. You may not think that Spain would have a place called Mini Hollywood, but it’s a location that has been featured in legendary westerns, such as A Fistful of Dollars, For A Few Dollars More, and The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly. In fact, the director of those films, Sergio Leone, was the man responsible for building this set, though recently it has been used more as a theme park and less as a film set. Mini Hollywood is in the Tabernas desert, which is located in the province of Almería, the same area which served as a backdrop for Cleopatra as well as Lawrence of Arabia.
Number One: Millennium Biltmore Hotel, Los Angeles. Los Angeles is, of course, the classic movie destination, and the Millennium Biltmore Hotel is a true film veteran. The amount of Hollywood films that have been shot here is quite extensive, spanning many different genres and styles. Everything from Fight Club and Spiderman, to Pretty in Pink and Chinatown, to Beverly Hills Cop and Pride and Prejudice have featured this beautiful building. Even Alfred Hitchcock incorporated the staircase into his film Vertigo. With extravagantly glamorous architecture, Spanish Revival-style fountains and statues, it’s no surprise that the hotel has remained a popular venue for the Academy Awards. In fact, many of the early Oscar ceremonies were held there.