Saturday, August 2, 2008

Personally, I think the trees upstage the actors...


When you live in the greater Los Angeles area, you get used to seeing film and TV crews. They’re everywhere. And it makes sense -- this is the world entertainment capital, and the region has some very notable scenery. Think about how many times you’ve watched a movie or show and seen the Santa Monica Pier or Rodeo Drive or the Pacific Coastal Highway.

But what happens when a production wants to shoot something that doesn’t look like Los Angeles? (I’ll sidestep discussing the trend of moving production jobs from Los Angeles to cheaper Toronto… ) What happens when a production needs a nearby location that looks, well, far away from Southern California? Perhaps even far away from the present time?

Hello South Pasadena!

The South Pasadena Film Office promotes our town as “Anywhere, USA” complete with a vintage art deco high school and “many tree lined streets without palm trees.” Not only that, it’s a one-stop shop for filmmakers: the police, public works and fire department are all handled by the Film Liaison. The film permit forms are even available online.

South Pas has quite a resume: Gone With the Wind, Legally Blonde 1 and 2, Back to the Future, The Player, The Terminator, Halloween, Bruce Almighty, Desperate Housewives, Flags of Our Fathers, Big Love, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Landscapers Challenge! (Just to name a few.) New productions roll in every month.

That's a pretty great career. Especially considering South Pasadena is waaaaaaaay over 30...

7 comments:

USelaine said...

Humphf! I'll have you know that Mendocino county has quite the production pedigree as well!

Johnny Belinda; Frenchman's Creek; East of Eden (yup!); The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming; The Summer of '42; Dying Young; Murder She Wrote; Racing With the Moon; Cujo; Overboard; Forever Young; Same Time Next Year; and The Majestic. I left some out, but you get the idea.

Thanks for the wide open opportunity to bust my Mendocino movie move there. 8^)

Harry Makertia said...

Thanks for sharing whole story about film production in SP. I didn't know that Bruce Almighty was produced in SP.

Ben Wideman said...

Great image today, and a cool inside scoop to go with it. I've heard this about South Pas. and find it really interesting. I hear that the new Will Farrell movie is shot around here too.

Cafe Pasadena said...

Along w. So Pas, Pasadena, Sierra Madre, San Marino, and Whittier (especially before the Whittier Narrows quake) are other popular non-LA film locations.

Laurie said...

Elaine, MIke and Ben, isn't it great that we live in such photogenic places?

THanks for visiting my blog, Harry!

Ben, I didn't realize that about the new Will Farrell movie. What's it about?

Jutilda said...

Austin is losing the film industry rush because the state is not giving taxs breaks to the production companies like Louisiana and Mississippi are. WOW - I had no idea that SP had so many films shot there but I'm not surprised. Can't wait to see it in person. YAY

Hilda said...

Ummm, can I give you a list of my favorite actors to get their autographs just in case they film there? ;D