Posts tagged Filming Locations
My Cousin Vinny: A Very Brief Summary
The 1992 comedy hit, My Cousin Vinny, stars Joe Pesci, Marisa Tomei, Fred Gwynne, Ralph Macchio, and Mitchell Whitfield. The movie is about two friends from New York traveling to California to attend college. Billy Gambini (Ralph Macchio) and Stan Rothenstein (Mitchell Whitfield) head south to take advantage of warmer weather in January, and while in rural Alabama, they stop at a convenience store to stock up on food for the trip. After Billy inadvertently shoplifts a can of tuna fish, they are stopped by local law enforcement, armed with a shotgun, who orders them out of the car with their hands up. And for only shoplifting a cheap can of tuna fish!
A series of mixups about the stolen tuna fish leads them to unknowingly “confess” to the murder of the store clerk, which occurred after they left. Luckily (?), Billy finds that there is a lawyer in the family, his very inexperienced cousin Vinny (Joe Pesci), who arrives in Alabama with his flamboyant, foul-mouthed girlfriend, Mona Lisa Vito (Marisa Tomei). Crime, drama, comedy, fish out of water story…My Cousin Vinny has it all. Great movie, loads of laughs. If you haven’t seen it, watch it!! Here is the original trailer from the film. I remember seeing it on TV and was pretty excited to see it when it came out.
I’ll be presenting these grouped by location and not necessarily as a progression or storyboard of the film.
Georgia State Road 83 at Nolan Store Road – South of Bostwick, Georgia
The opening is a montage of various locations and scenery around rural Georgia around Monticello, Eatonton, etc. The two locations below were very close to each other, but depicted as being in a different order…pretty much like the whole thing, how various pieces are edited together into one seamless scene…but when you’re driving around and photographing it, attempting to figure it all out, it’s funny how you piece it all together as the filmmakers did.
Sac-O-Suds Convenience Store, State Road 16, Monticello, Georgia
Here, Billy and Stan are approaching the Sac-O-Suds Convenience Store to stop and get more snacks for the road trip.
The Sac-O-Suds is located along Georgia State Road 16, at the Ocmulgee River. In this movie, I liked how the filmmakers changed the state road signs, retaining all of the correct state road numbers, but changing the shape to Alabama instead of Georgia.
Funny enough, when I first researched the filming locations for My Cousin Vinny back in the fall of 2008, I read the Sac-O-Suds was opened, so I was excited to visit it. It was actually closed and had been for at least a couple of years. In the eight years that have passed, the store remained closed, was in disrepair, but happily – has since been rebuilt and is now operating again.
The entrance to the Sac-O-Suds Convenience Store, located along Georgia State Road 16, at the Ocmulgee River.
Another exterior view of the Sac-O-Suds.
Billy and Stan debating brand vs. generic canned goods as well as the best source of protein…beans vs. tuna fish.
On the bottom, half of the Road Trip Memories duo, Pat, checks out the canned goods at the Sac-O-Suds.
Billy picking up some items from the Sac-O-Suds, inadvertently placing a can of tuna fish in his pocket, which he forgets to pay for…a simple act which causes a huge misunderstanding and results in his accidental confession to murder and sets the entire plot of the movie in motion.
Carrying too much in your hands at the store. I do it all the time. I go in, thinking I’m going to get one or two items and don’t need a cart and end up with my arms full of stuff. Be careful if you put anything in your pockets that you might forget to pay for!
It’s never a good idea to shortchange someone on their Slush Puppy. Fill it up, please.
We had a really nice conversation with Cary, one of the new owners of the Sac-O-Suds. She was very excited to have had the opportunity to purchase and essentially rebuild the store. It was in a fairly deplorable condition and had to be rebuilt. They did a great job and locals and tourists alike are excited to visit the Sac-O-Suds again.
We purchased a number of items somewhat matching Billy & Stan’s, including carmel popcorn and potato chips. I passed on the cookies and Dinty Moore beef stew this time. We bought bought Powerade and bottled water to drink, but very soon, she said they will be putting in a Slush Puppy machine!
Pay no attention to that can of tuna fish. OK…we confess…we didn’t pay for the can of tuna fish! But we didn’t shoot the clerk. Honestly, we didn’t.
Across the street from the Sac-O-Suds were the trailers two of the prosecution witnesses, Mrs. Riley (needs thicker glasses) and Mr. Tipton (whose trailer sat on a mystical spot on earth where the laws of physics ceased to exist, thereby allowing boiling water to soak into a grit faster).
A view of Georgia State Road 16 from the Sac-O-Suds. The parking lot is basically the same, but has a few changes. The gas pumps are gone and the landscaped area at the front is different. That was an important location in the movie, as this is where tire marks were shown, having been made by the murderers’ car. Mona Lisa Vito’s photo of the tire marks was the key piece of evidence that proved, with out a doubt, that Billy and Stan’s 1964 metallic mint green Buick Skylark could have never made those marks without Positraction and an independent rear suspension, which were only available on the 1963 Pontiac Tempest.
Vinny interviews Mrs. Riley at her trailer across the street from the Sac-O-Suds. She’s not wearing her glasses!
Monticello, Georgia (Town Square)
The following scenes were all filmed in and around the town square in Monticello, Georgia.
When Vinny Gambini and fiance Mona Lisa Vito arrive in Wahzoo City, and Vinny checks out what could be causing the problem with their car.
Vinny teases Lisa for “sticking out like a sore thumb” in the south, while he fits in much better with his cowboy boots. Her classic retort: “Yeah, you blend.” LOL
As Vinny looks to see what the problem is with the car, a local explains that he has mud in the tires, causing the wheels to be out of balance. “Let me ax you a question. How do you get mud into the tires?”
We know…Vinny’s Caddy is much cooler than our Nissan Sentra.
The Jasper County Courthouse, all exterior scenes were actually filmed here. Many interior scenes were filmed inside this courthouse; however, the courtroom scenes were filmed at a set in Covington.
Mitchell’s Department Store was the only store in town that had a suit that was made of cloth and was suitably “lawerly” for the leather-clad Vinny Gambini to wear to court.
In the film, the store is larger than it is today. In the bottom photo, the storefront on the right side is Mitchell’s Department Store.
Here is a photo of the sign over the door of Mitchell’s Department Store.
After Vinny’s one and only suit gets accidentally thrown into the mud, they find there is no 1 hour dry cleaner and the department store is closed “with the flu.” Vinny desperately needs a suit; he cannot wear his leather pants and jacket to court or else he’ll get thrown back into jail by the judge who views such dress as an insult to both him and the integrity of his court.
Lisa spots this secondhand shop and buys Vinny a new suit. It IS made of cloth and it’s hilarious. Unfortunately, the judge is not amused. A nail salon is now in the location.
Look at that ridiculous thing!
Here is another scene of Vinny and Lisa driving, this time they are on their way to prison to visit Billy and Stan. Again, note how the filmmakers cleverly changed the state road signs to depict Alabama instead of Georgia. However, the signs below it still point to Georgia towns, Macon and Eatonton, etc. This is again the town square in Monticello, Georgia.
This was taken from the same location above, as the camera pans while they are driving on Forsyth Street (GA 83).
Lisa and Vinny are discussing how to continue to hold off Judge Haller from finding out that there are no records for Vinny Gambini in the court system, and that the prestigious lawyer’s name he provided, Jerry Gallo, is dead.
On the courthouse steps, Stan thanks Vinny for defending them and apologizes for doubting his abilities based on his total lack of litigation experience.
After all charges are dismissed for Billy and Stan, Vinny is trying to leave as quickly as possible before the judge reveals his lack of court experience in New York. To Vinny’s surprise, the judge praises him for his great trial work, as well as his humility, after receiving a glowing commendation from Vinny’s mentor, Judge Molloy.
Dave’s Bar-B-Q and Seafood is now Dave’s Bar-B-Que and Soul Food, located not far from the courthouse square in Monticello, Georgia. This is the location where Vinny and Lisa took a break to eat while Vinny is trying to think of anything to help Billy and Stan, because things are not looking good by this time. Lisa is desperate to help, and they argue after Vinny yells at her that she can’t help.
The thing I like best about this movie is that not only she does help, she is the pivotal person in doing so. She took the critical photo of the tire marks at the Sac-O-Suds, which Vinny then looked at, realizing he could prove Billy and Stan’s innocence. He puts Lisa on the witness stand, testifying as an expert witness in general automotive knowledge, as to how Billy & Stan’s Skylark could never have made the tire marks. She also got in touch with Vinny’s Brooklyn mentor, Judge Molloy, who spoke to Judge Haller about Vinny.
Maddox Street & 7 Island Road, Jasper County, Georgia
This photo was unplanned, and I had no screen capture with me when I took it. We were intently searching for a scene we DID have a screenshot for, but couldn’t find. As we drove all over the area, I spotted this area of trees and since I have seen the movie countless times, I knew it looked familiar, from the scene where District Attorney Trotter and Vinny go hunting together.
After returning home and watching the movie, I was happy to verify that I found another location…score! Good thing too, since we never did find the one we were actually looking for!
Lee Arrendale State Prison, Alto, Georgia
The prison where Billy and Stan are taken while they await trial is the Lee Arrendale State Prison in Alto, Georgia. For maximum authenticity, scenes were actually filmed around and inside the prison.
No Rest for the Weary – Vinny and Lisa’s Various Lodging
General Putnam Motel – 774 Madison Rd, Eatonton, Georgia
Susie Agnes Hotel / Town Hall – Bostwick, Georgia
This location served as the second hotel where Lisa and Vinny stayed, and yet again, they are unable to get a decent night’s sleep; this time, due to a pig slaughterhouse across the street.
A different view of the Susie Agnes Hotel / Bostwick City Hall.
And another view…
State Road 11, Mansfield, Georgia
Along State Road 11 in Mansfield is a business called AirPower (along the left side), which served as the location for the Wahzoo City Hotel, the third and final hotel where Lisa and Vinny stayed. Yet again plagued with sound issues, this hotel was nearby a train track with a train that went by very early every morning, rattling the hotel and all of its contents, including the drinking glasses in the room, which amusingly shattered as they crashed to the floor each morning. Maybe it’s just me, but I would have removed them from the room and used plastic or wrapped them up in towels or something.
At the same location, across the street, is a building which in the movie was the bar / pool hall “Pool and Chicken”.
Here is a map of our complete road trip, including all of the locations for My Cousin Vinny and The Fugitive:
Pat & Jennifer
The Fugitive is an excellent movie starring Harrison Ford as Dr. Richard Kimble, a prominent Chicago vascular surgeon, who comes home one evening to find his wife brutally beaten and shot. Still in his apartment is the killer, a one-armed man, who fights with Dr. Kimble and then flees.
Asserting that they are unable to locate the alleged one-armed man, the Chicago Police Dept. builds a solid case against Dr. Kimble; he is brought to trial and convicted. As he is transported to prison, the Menard Correctional Center in southern Illinois, another prisoner attacks a guard and the ensuing disruption causes the bus driver to get shot. This in turn, causes the bus to crash, landing on train tracks. Of course, the track is active, a train is coming and crashes into the bus. Kimble’s escape from the bus wreckage is of course, what starts the action of the film in motion, and serves as the entire basis for the film’s title, as Kimble becomes a fugitive, being sought by U.S. Marshals led by Tommy Lee Jones as Deputy Marshal Samuel Gerard.
Dillsboro, North Carolina
In the film, the bus / train wreck scene is depicted taking place “20 miles from Menard” where the prisoners were being transported to the correctional facility. Subsequently, the U.S. Marshals reference area locations, such as the nearby town of Chester, as well as I-55, I-57, I-24, and State Route 13, where US Marshal Sam Gerard recommends checkpoints. However, the train crash actually took place in Dillsboro, North Carolina and is still there, deteriorating. It is often noted how the area of the Smoky Mountains scarcely resembles southern Illinois. The article I posted below gives more insight as to the filming of the crash and also why North Carolina was selected.
Here is a video of the the entire bus/train wreck scene.
Here are several screenshots along with my photos of the location.
One of my favorite lines from the movie.
Once it is determined that the prisoners are not all dead (one of the Marshals discovered sets of leg irons with no legs in them), Gerard immediately orders a search. One of my favorite scenes from the movie, and the best line from Gerard (the doughnut with sprinkles is probably my second favorite).
Alright, listen up, ladies and gentlemen. Our fugitive has been on the run for ninety minutes. Average foot speed over uneven ground barring injury is 4 miles an hour. That gives us a radius of six miles. What I want out of each and every one of you is a hard-target search of every gas station, residence, warehouse, farmhouse, henhouse, outhouse, and doghouse in that area. Checkpoints go up at fifteen miles. Your fugitive’s name is Dr. Richard Kimble. Go get him.
Sylva, North Carolina
Several scenes (all in relative sequence) were filmed in Sylva.
After escaping from the train wreck, and wading through a creek, Dr. Richard Kimble spots someone leaving a mechanic’s uniform in an open, unlocked truck and takes it to change from his IDOC (Illinois Dept. of Corrections) jumpsuit. This location is along Business US 23 in Sylva, at a bridge over Scott Creek. At the time of the movie, the location was a Carquest auto parts store called Taylor Auto Parts. It is now a Hispanic market.
Looking down into Scott Creek from the parking lot of the market.
This view of Sylva was a split-second scene in the film, just before Dr. Kimble is seen walking toward a hospital. We drove around quite a bit trying to pin this one down. While I don’t think we were in the exact location, we were very, very close…or as we often said this trip…”close enough!”
Harris Regional Hospital, Sylva, North Carolina
Dr. Richard Kimble sneaks into the hospital by unloading boxes from a loading dock.
Filmed at the Emergency Room entrance.
The top image is from the movie, the lower photo is a partial photo of a door in Harris Regional Hospital (I guess the director of food service), where the lettering is the same as it was in the film.
A State Police Officer arrives at the hospital to notify staff to be on the lookout for Dr. Richard Kimble, who they believe may go to the hospital seeking treatment for injuries in the bus/train wreck.
As with most buildings, there have been some additions and renovations since the time of the movie. If you look closely enough, differences in the emergency room entrance are obvious (we were there and it was confusing!). There is an addition where the state trooper’s car is parked; you can see where the old “EMERGENCY” sign was along the canopy on the right side. The loading dock area (just slightly visible to the left) is the same today, and the Emergency Room entrance and rail is the same.
After treating his injuries, Dr. Kimble shaves his beard and is trying to leave the hospital. Area law enforcement has been notified of his escape from the prison bus, and all area hospitals have been alerted to be on the lookout for him.
These scenes were filmed in the hospital’s interior. Prior to the trip, I hadn’t actually planned on photographing these scenes (nor did I with the emergency room either, for that matter). I had no screen captures, but as we stood in the corridor, knowing the scene from having seen it a million times, I knew I was in the right place. We (barely) managed to watch a video of the scene to assist us.
The double door was closed in the movie, but we were in the correct corridor.
Kimble encounters the State Trooper, who asks him if he’s seen the fugitive from the train crash.
From the interior of the emergency room area looking outside, where the loading dock is on the right and the ambulance area is on the left.
Dr. Kimble sees an ambulance arrive, and assists the EMTs, who are transporting an injured correctional officer who was on the bus and was stabbed by one of the inmates, which caused the fracas leading to the bus crash. Kimble and the officer recognize each other as the officer is whisked into the hospital by the EMTs.
Kimble immediately goes into his next method of escape, stealing an ambulance. Here he is leaving the emergency room area at Harris Regional Hospital in Sylva.
Bryson City, North Carolina
Dr. Richard Kimble drives the stolen ambulance to escape the U.S. Marshals. This scene was filmed along Everett Street in Bryson City, North Carolina.
The caboose is located along Everett Street in Bryson City. It is mainly the same, but probably the most notable difference is back in 1993 they didn’t have hashtags (note #Bryson City). Well, they did, but back then they were called pound signs then and didn’t describe and aggregate various topics. #sarcasm #lame #SorryIdigress #backontopic
The Bryson City train depot is on the left.
Cheoa Dam – US 129, near Robbinsville, North Carolina
Dr. Kimble drives the stolen ambulance into a tunnel nearby a dam to escape the pursuit of the U.S. Marshals. The screen shot from the movie above is actually a composite – the road next to the dam does not lead to a tunnel. I have read that the tunnel is located somewhere along the Blue Ridge Parkway, so I might have to look into that sometime. The chase scenes were supposed to be along the BRP as well. We didn’t do a lot of research on those locations this time, but may modify this post in the future if we can find some of them and take a trip there.
The exterior scenes of the dam were all filmed along US 129 in North Carolina, at the Cheoah Dam.
After being chased to the top edge of the dam by the U.S. Marshals, Dr. Richard Kimble leaps from the dam.
Several composites were done for the film. The tunnels where they chased Kimble were all done in Chicago. In the screenshot below, showing Kimble in the mouth of the dam, the area behind Dr. Kimble shows US 129 just west of the dam. The dam has no wide mouth openings like the one where Dr. Kimble is standing, but if it did, the scene looks very accurate!
Yet another classic line by Tommy Lee Jones, most of which was ad-libbed.
Honorable mention goes to Joe Pantoliano as Cosmo Renro, whose retort is equally funny: “Alright…can we go home now?”
US 129, just west of the dam, visible in the background. It more prominent in the film, because the gates were open for plot purposes.
James R. Thompson Center – Clark & Randolph Streets
Chicago, Illinois – the U.S. Marshals leaving their parking garage.
I hope you enjoyed what I have so far. I hope to get to Chicago and take some photos up there.
Here is a map of our complete road trip (January 2015), including all of the North Carolina locations for The Fugitive as well as Georgia for My Cousin Vinny:
For those couple of you who follow my blog, we sometimes incorporate photographing movie filming locations into our road trips.
We first researched the filming locations for My Cousin Vinny in the fall of 2008. We had decided (as we regularly do), that it was a great movie to watch for some laughs. But of course, instead of watching the movie like normal people, on this evening, our curiosity was piqued and we ended up breaking out the laptops to start researching filming locations and continually pausing the movie. At the time, there wasn’t alot of info on the Internet, but we did have satellite images and maps available, as well as the newest research tool that was in its infancy, Google Street View, launched the year before.
I was very excited to photograph the filming locations and had them all plotted out on a DeLorme map (along with some from The Fugitive, which we also researched). Over Thanksgiving in November 2008, we planned on doing this trip, and rain was looking to douse the south for days, so as we left town, we made a right turn and went west and took a trip on 66 instead. Yes, we switched gears immediately…that’s how we roll. Impulse! But we really didn’t want the trip to be a literal washout, so we decided to wait for another time.
Unfortunately, life didn’t work out to afford us the opportunity to get down there in the spring or summer. By the fall 2009, after purchasing a T@B travel trailer and getting hooked on camping, road trips took a back seat to camping trips. Since then, for one reason or another, if we took a road trip, we always went somewhere else and just never got around to this trip. Fast forward to the end of December 2014. Pat had 5 days off he needed to use or lose, and we debated on camping vs. a road trip. I thought about the My Cousin Vinny locations I’d always wanted to see, sent Pat my map and the decision was made…we’d go “Way Down South!” Finally!
We also knew that the trip would be done with certain filming locations for The Fugitive, which were filmed in North Carolina. Primarily the bus-train wreck scene, hospital, ambulance chase, and leap from the dam were all filmed in North Carolina (despite that it’s supposed to be in southern Illinois and bears no resemblance to that area). After that, the action switches to Chicago.
Lastly, I was watching The Cannonball Run this past year, which has a ton of locations across the country. I didn’t look for many, just a few, but one notable location was when Burt Reynolds and Dom Deluise landed an airplane in a street in a town to get more beer, and then took off again. That would also be along this route.
Other than photographing the locations, the trip was uneventful. It was all about the filming locations! It was a very pleasant drive and temperatures were much warmer. Light jackets were all that were needed. We did get to The Varsity in Atlanta for dinner on the first day (New Year’s Eve). What’ll ya have, what’ll ya have?
New Year’s Day, we set off for The Cannonball Run and My Cousin Vinny locations.
The hotel from The Cannonball Run was, to say the least, a major disappointment. What was a thriving hotel at one time (looked very cool in the movie) is now a very run down cheap motel, with a seedy clientele. We didn’t stick around long enough to get a decent photo, particularly as not one – but two – police cars arrived to patrol the property. No thanks, moving on…
Next up was Covington, Georgia – home to the airplane landing scene, which I will post on my Movie Filming Locations page at some point when I have good screen captures.
Then, it was on to Monticello and Eatonton, and the surrounding area, to do all of the scenes from My Cousin Vinny.
The next day we headed up to North Carolina, where we went to Sylva and Bryson City, as well as near Robbinsville, to work on The Fugitive.
On the second to last day, we did make a quick stop in Gatlinburg to walk around and check out the shops – it was in the 70’s! The final was a bit colder, and we only drove back home and didn’t do much. All together, it was a fun trip, and we enjoyed the filming locations!
So, here are the results of our journey!
Here is a map of our complete road trip, including all of the locations for My Cousin Vinny and The Fugitive:
The opening credits actually contain all of the filming locations that we currently have (we don’t have them all at this point). This will be a work in progress as we travel.
Here is a video of the opening credits to set the proper mood, as well as the context of the scene, which we love, with Steppenwolf’s “Born to be Wild.” Classic.
Interstate 40 East, Crossing the Colorado River at the California/Arizona Border
This scene was filmed along I-40 eastbound, crossing from California into Arizona. Two bridges, which are former alignments of Route 66 are also visible. The first bridge to the right, is the Red Rock Bridge, which carried Route 66 traffic from 1947 until 1966, when I-40 became the primary crossing. The Red Rock Bridge was later demolished. Also visible is the Old Trails Arch Bridge, which was built in 1916 and was an alignment of Route 66 from its inception through 1947, when it was replaced by the Red Rock Bridge.
Below, you can “drive” the same location on Google Street View.
Here is another view from this scene filmed from I-40, with the Red Rock Bridge first, and the Old Trails Arch Bridge more clearly visible behind it.
Since the scene was along the Interstate, our best replication was taken through the windshield. Not great quality, we know (dirty windshield!).
Here is a better view of the Old Trails Arch Bridge, taken from the California side (Park Moabi exit).
Golden Shores/Oatman Exit 1 off I-40, near Topock, Arizona
This scene was filmed on the Arizona side of the Colorado River, the first exit after the I-40 crossing above. The road that Billy and Wyatt are seen riding is on the south side of the Interstate, and is an old alignment of Route 66, leading to the Old Trails Arch Bridge (privately owned by Pacific Gas & Electric).
A view of this scene taken from across the road.
Park Moabi Road Exit 153 off I-40, Needles, California
Here, through the magic of film, Wyatt and Billy are back west, in Calfornia again. This scene was taken off the first exit on the California side of the Colorado River, Exit 153, Park Moabi Road.
The view below is looking north on Park Moabi Road, toward what is now an RV resort called Pirates Cove Resort & Marina, near Needles, California.
From assessing this scene and the photo below, we believe that some changes were made to the road since the film was made. The curves seen in the screenshot above do not exist in the road today, and judging from satellite views of the location, it appears there are remnants of curved road here. But without research (or the opinion of some of our Route expert friends, we won’t state this as fact, just casual observation. However, it definitely safe to say that this is a very close approximation of the location of this scene. As the co/owner of a small retro trailer (Serro Scotty HiLander), we actually like the scene in 1969 with the cool canned ham trailer!
Additionally, Park Moabi Road north, leads to an old alignment of Route 66, which eastbound leads to where the Red Rock Bridge (from the screenshots above).
And in July 2014…
Oddly enough (and ignore this now if you aren’t into geeky details…just enjoy the photos), in reality, this scene was filmed from the same spot as the shot above. If you watch the YouTube video, you will see that as Wyatt and Billy are riding up the hill, the camera smoothly pans across, following them as they proceed south on Park Moabi Road.
Interestingly (and this could be the result of the technical differences between movie and still cameras), while the film was shot from the same location (by the railroad on Park Moabi, where an old alignment of Route 66 goes back east), our photos were taken some distance apart on Park Moabi. This will be evident to anyone who drives Park Moabi in real life (or check it out on Google Street view).
Here is the view as they rode south on Park Moabi Road.
And in 2014…
Route 66 – Flagstaff, Arizona
This scene was filmed on Route 66 (S. Milton Street, near Tuscon Avenue) in Flagstaff, Arizona. Billy and Wyatt are passing what was the Lumberjack Cafe. This lumberjack statue is still in Flagstaff; not at this location, but instead at Northern Arizona University, at the J. Lawrence Walkup Skydome, along with a similar twin. Their team is the Lumberjacks, and he serves as their mascot.
This is the scene today, at what is now called Granny’s Closet. The lumberjack that was visible in Easy Rider is now located at Northern Arizona University. Below is Little Louie, who was not visible in Easy Rider, but has been at the Lumberjack Cafe since the 1960’s, along with the two other Bunyan-type statues.
For more detailed information on the Bunyan lumberjacks and Little Louie at the Lumberjack Cafe, please see this page on RoadsideArchitecture.com
In this scene, they are a bit farther east on Route 66 (near N. Leroux Street) in Flagstaff. This building was the Canyon Hotel at the time, with a camera shop also.
The building in 2014. Several businesses are listed at this location, such as an Architectural Design Studio, Flagstaff Piano, Clock and Fine Art Gallery, and a realty company.
The scene below is just a block east from the location above, also on Route 66, looking south onto S. San Francisco Street).
And the same scene in 2014.
That’s all for now! We had a screen capture of a couple others that we missed. One is a quick cut of them at another angle in the view above (we were right there and totally spaced taking a photo…next time!). Another location is a bit farther west in Bellemont, Arizona. Again, a work in progress that we’ll add to over time. There are many other locations in the movie in New Mexico and Louisiana (of note), so as we travel to those areas, we’ll add to this page!
Hope you enjoyed the ride!
Pat & Jennifer
Wild Hogs is a 2007 comedy starring John Travolta, Tim Allen, Martin Lawrence and William H. Macy as middle-aged friends living in Cincinnati, Ohio who own Harleys and like to go for urban / suburban rides and hang out at the “biker” bar in the city, called “Byker’s Island”.
Woody, played by John Travolta, is a (formerly) rich lawyer whose swimsuit model wife recently left him, causing him to have a breakdown, losing his job and his house too. One afternoon after a ride, he questions his friends about what they are doing with their lives and suggests a real ride – a road trip to the Pacific. The other Wild Hogs are Doug, a dentist played by Tim Allen, has a loving wife but can’t connect with his young son and needs to watch his stress and cholesterol levels; Bobby, played by Martin Lawrence, is a henpecked plumber with an overbearing wife and out of control daughters; and Dudley, played by William H. Macy, is a shy, nerdy computer programmer who is afraid to speak to women. All agree to take the road trip and to find some real fun and adventure and reclaim the wild guys they used to be in college.
Opening Scene – Laguna Blvd SW, Albuquerque, New Mexico
Here is a video of the opening scene where the characters get together for a suburban ride.
Here is a video that Pat took from the back window of our SUV as I drove up and down Laguna Boulevard SW.
L to R: Bobby (Martin Lawrence) joins Doug (Tim Allen), and Woody (John Travolta)
Martin Lawrence as Bobby
Rail Yards – Albuquerque, New Mexico
This scene during their ride takes them through the old Rail Yards in Albuquerque.
They are not accessible, so we took a photo from the street.
Central Avenue (Route 66) & 2nd Avenue NW,
Albuquerque, New Mexico
During their ride, the Wild Hogs take a quick break so Dudley can check on his bike after an earlier fall.
This scene was filmed at a parking lot at the corner of Central Avenue & 2nd Avenue NW.
Unfortunately, Dudley loses control of his bike in the parking lot.
After falling off, the bike hits the curb and flips into the air, striking a light pole.
But Dudley’s OK!
The Library Bar & Grille, Central Avenue (Route 66),
Albuquerque, New Mexico
This location served as the Wild Hogs’ hangout “Byker’s Island” where they go to relax and have a beer after their ride. Woody, having lost everything in his life (but doesn’t reveal that to this friends at this time), questions their upscale middle-aged, suburban biker personas – stating that instead of Wild Hogs, they’re more like wild lambs. They lament that they have lost their wild side that they had in college, and wanting to reclaim their sense of adventure, decide to take a road trip to the Pacific with their Harleys.
Tijeras Avenue NE, Albuquerque, New Mexico
The Wild Hogs are getting ready to start their journey to the Pacific from US 50 in Cincinnati.
The scene was shot at Tijeras Avenue NE in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The landscaping in the background of the movie was added for the movie. The actual area features xeriscaping.
The Wild Hogs are getting ready to start their journey to the Pacific from Cincinnati. Dudley shows off his “tat” he got at the Meadow Hills Galleria for the trip – now he’s a biker! The others laugh at his Apple logo tattoo.
The location along Tijeras actually does not have alot of grass or plants. The fountain (minus water) is visible in the back, as well as the building to the left.
Doug is excited that Dudley got him set up with a GPS in his phone for the trip, to which Woody replies they don’t need a GPS to discover America and throws Doug’s cell phone into a nearby sewer.
And the sewer was nearby too!
Another view of their meeting spot, which has the added effect of being in Cincinnati by the addition of highway signs showing US 50 West.
In reality, US 50 is in Colorado, much farther to the north of this location in Albuquerque!
After Doug, Woody, and Bobby dispose of their cell phones, Dudley throws his into the windshield of an oncoming truck, causing them to quickly jump on their bikes and take off.
This is the same location as above on Tijeras Avenue NE, only the opposite side of the underpass.
Madrid, New Mexico
As the Wild Hogs travel west, the road scenes, whether they were supposed to be in Illinois or Missouri the first night, were all filmed in New Mexico (and it shows!!).
The Wild Hogs are excited to stop at a “real” biker bar in New Mexico, which is home to the biker gang, the Del Fuegos, led by Jack Blade, played by Ray Liotta. The Del Fuegos are infuriated by the intrusion of suburban biker “posers” at their bar, telling them they aren’t real bikers.
They steal Dudley’s Sportster, leaving him with a sidecar attached to Woody’s motorcycle. Woody, ashamed at the incident goes back to the bar to get Dudley’s bike. He cuts the fuel lines to the Del Fuegos’ motorcycles, causing the bar to explode when Jack’s cigarette falls into the gas on the ground. With the Del Fuegos’ bikes damaged, the Wild Hogs are able to get away…for now. However, Woody doesn’t tell the other Wild Hogs what actually happened, instead telling his friends he threatened to sue the Del Fuegos if they didn’t return Dudley’s motorcycle.
In the scene below, the Wild Hogs have run out of gas due to Woody’s panic about having blown up the Del Fuegos’ bar, and insist they get gas at the next stop. To bad, they don’t see the gas station sign that the next station is 200 miles away.
Tired, hot and thirsty, they arrive in Madrid, New Mexico.
Here is the same location in a later scene, when two of the Del Fuegos arrive in Madrid.
The majority of the remaining scenes were filmed in Madrid, New Mexico, which is located along NM 14 (The Turquoise Trail), a scenic ride from Santa Fe south to I-40/US 66. A small portion of NM 14 in Santa Fe (north of Madrid) is also a part of the Santa Fe loop, a pre-1937 alignment of Route 66.
Maggie’s Diner – Madrid, New Mexico
The Wild Hogs arrive at the fictional Maggie’s Diner in Madrid, New Mexico. They’re extremely thirsty and their uncharacteristically raucous behavior in begging for water or something else to drink, causes the townspeople to mistake them for the Del Fuegos, who periodically arrive in Madrid and demand food and drinks at no charge and frighten the locals.
Maggie’s Diner was a set built on location in Madrid, and was left to the town by the film company. It was brought up to building codes, and now is used as a gift/souvenir shop selling – what else – biker and Wild Hogs merchandise! I picked up a couple of shirts – Del Fuegos and Wild Hogs.
Old Boarding House Mercantile – Madrid, New Mexico
The next photos show what is depicted as the hotel the Wild Hogs stay in Madrid, as the gas station is closed until the next day. Upon hearing that the Del Fuegos periodically come to Madrid, Woody is extremely panicky to leave town, fearing that the Del Fuegos will soon arrive, find them, and take revenge for blowing up their bar.
The Old Boarding House Mercantile is a very nice general store in an old house – it’s pretty unique as it uses the original house rooms for different categories of merchandise. They have a variety of items for sale, general merchandise, groceries, snacks, drinks, coffee, etc.
Shy and afraid of women, Dudley finds romance with Maggie, played by Marisa Tomei. Maggie owns the local Diner which bears her name. After an enjoyable night together at the town’s Chile Fest, the next morning Dudley and Maggie would like to have breakfast with the others, but Woody is anxious to leave before the Del Fuegos arrive.
Madrid, New Mexico
But it’s too late – here come the Del Fuegos!
Maggie’s Diner – Madrid, New Mexico
The Del Fuegos have arrived in Madrid and are ready for retaliation – or compensation – for the loss of their bar. The other Wild Hogs are confused about this, since Woody told him they gave him back the bike after the threatened to sue them. With no other choice, Woody confesses to his friends about cutting the fuel lines to the motorcycles, resulting in their bar being blown up. The Wild Hogs now realize the Del Fuegos want to kill them, so they hide out at Maggie’s house, hoping they’ll give up and leave…but instead the Del Fuegos invade the diner, threatening to burn it down.
Here, Dudley confronts the Del Fuegos which they remark is brave but stupid – they string him up over the main road and will beat him up if the Wild Hogs don’t pay them for their bar.
Here is the exterior of Maggie’s Diner building in Madrid.
Finally, the Wild Hogs confront the Del Fuegos. Led by Woody (who has lost everything in his life and has nothing to lose), their attempt to rescue Dudley fails and they fight the Del Fuegos.
Despite repeatedly being beaten to the ground, the Wild Hogs stand up each time to the Del Fuegos. Finally, the townspeople of Madrid realize that if four guys can stand up to 50 bikers, 500 of them can too.
As the townpeople and Wild Hogs surround the Del Fuegos, who still won’t back down, their former leader and owner of the bar, Damien Blade, played by Peter Fonda, arrives in town and tells Jack and the other Del Fuegos to stop and let it go. He tells them they have lost touch with what being a biker is all about – riding and the highway…and that they – not the Wild Hogs – are the posers. He thanks the Wild Hogs for burning down the bar, explaining that he insured it for twice its value and he did them a favor.
The Del Fuegos leave and Jack says goodbye to Damien, calling him Pop; Damien shakes his head, saying Jack’s just like his mother.
Damien tells the Wild Hogs to ride hard or go home, and gives them one last piece of advice….lose the watches!
Hope you enjoyed the ride!
Pat & Jennifer
Road Trip Memories isn’t dead, we’ve just been hibernating! It’s been such a harsh winter, we haven’t really had an opportunity to take any road trips or camping trips (we do like to camp and hike in the winter too)!
We hope to get out and about this year. We’ve selected got our annual vacation destination – we’re heading west to South Dakota, which I’ve wanted to visit for a long time. After Dances with Wolves came out, I really wanted to visit the Badlands, and had a trip planned and booked. Unfortunately, the Great Flood of 1993 put the kibosh on that trip. So this year, it’s time to finally head west! We’re planning on including some Lincoln Highway into the trip as well.
I’d also like to add a few movie filming locations to the site. I’ve been researching locations for a good number of my favorite movies over the past few years. This year, I’d like to add “My Cousin Vinny”, so stay tuned for that. Since a lot of that movie was filmed in Georgia, we’ll be close to Juliette, which served as the Whistle Stop Cafe in Fried Green Tomatoes, which I’ve done a blog post on, here. But it’s always great to stop by there because they have excellent fried green tomatoes, naturally!
As time and finances permit, hopefully we’ll mix in more road and camping trips!
Some Came Running is the story of US Army veteran and two-time author, Dave Hirsh (Frank Sinatra). Bitter from being sent to a boys’ home by his brother at age 12, Dave’s return to his hometown after 16 years shakes up the small town of Parkman, Indiana.
US 421, Milton, Kentucky
In the film’s opening scene, Dave is on a bus heading to the fictional town of Parkman, Indiana. Drunk, he was put on a bus in Chicago. Through the bus windows, the “Long View Inn” is barely visible.
In reality, the bus was heading down US 421 in Milton, Kentucky, heading toward the Milton-Madison Bridge. This building appears to be a private home, located on the bend.
Along US 421 in Milton, Kentucky.
Approaching the Milton-Madison Bridge.
Main Street (SR 56) – Madison, Indiana
In this scene, the bus is traveling through “Parkman, Indiana.”
It was filmed along Main Street (State Road 56) in Madison. The corner building above, to the right of the bus driver, seems to have been a pharmacy. It is now a nightclub/bar called The Electric Lady.
Courthouse – Madison, Indiana
In this scene, Dave is surprised to find he has a traveling companion, a lovable floozy named Ginny, played by Shirley MacLaine.
The scene was filmed on the east side of Madison, with the courthouse in the background. Through the bus windows in the photo above, the building that now houses a Dollar General, is visible.
The Central Hotel – Madison, Indiana
Dave arrives in town, and immediately finds lodging at the “Parkman Hotel.”
This probably was a hotel at one time. I “think” it currently isn’t, I have seen no listings for it as a hotel, just a bar/tavern, called the Central Hotel.
Main Street (SR 56) – Madison, Indiana
Dave’s brother Frank is quite shook up about Dave’s arrival in town. Feeling somewhat guilty about placing his younger brother in a boys’ home (yet all the while completely justifying doing so), Frank fears that Dave’s presence will break down the prominent social status he and his wife Agnes have worked so hard to attain. Frank is the owner of a jewelry store bearing his name, which he inherited from his father-in-law.
The location for Hirsh Jewelers was along Main Street in Madison. It is now a bookstore called Village Lights.
Dave also wastes no time finding the local drinking establishment, hanging out with people more of his own social status. He heads to Smitty’s Bar.
You won’t be bellying up to the bar now, just a massage table. This appears to be a place called Complementary Health.
Dave wastes no time in causing trouble, getting into a fight outside Smitty’s Bar.
This scene actually did take place along the side of the building that is now Complementary Health.
Dave is befriended by local professional gambler, Bama Dillert, played by Dean Martin. The house on the left, below, was used for Bama’s house, and exterior and interior scenes were filmed there.
The cool thing about this house, is it is for sale, and on the Century 21 website it shows interior photos (thanks to Pat for the suggestion to check the website). Not a set…the scenes at Bama’s house were filmed inside. We are tempted to go to an open house!
In this scene, Frank Hirsh is spending a little quality time with his secretary, parked down by the river.
They are driving along Vaughn Drive in Madison, following the Ohio River, this one facing east.
And now facing west.
Parker Auditorium, Hanover College, Indiana
In this scene, Ginny, who is madly in love with Dave, is on her way to see her rival for Dave’s affections, Gwen French. Gwen and her father, Robert, are prominent citizens of Parkman. Robert is a professor at the local university and Gwen is a schoolteacher who is a big fan of Dave’s two books. Anxious to meet Dave and discuss his work, Gwen and Dave are immediately smitten with each other. Gwen encourages Dave regarding his third story, and helps to get it published.
Ginny is on her way to (nicely) confront Gwen about her intentions with Dave and to back out if Gwen wants Dave. Gwen, fearing a commitment to Dave due to his lower class associates, drinking, and gambling, falsely assures Ginny she has no interest in Dave, other than professional.
This scene was filmed at Hanover College, just west of Madison in Hanover, Indiana. From the same spot, trees now obscure the Parker Auditorium, visible in the above scene. I have also included a photo of Parker Auditorium, below.
Main Street (SR 56), Madison, Indiana
Bama and Dave are driving through town, while preparation is underway for a local carnival.
The scene was shot on the east side of Madison, along Main Street.
Ohio Theatre, Main Street, Madison, Indiana
Moffett Cemetery, Milton, Kentucky
In the interest of not revealing the ending, I won’t discuss the plot details any further…though it is obviously a funeral scene. It was filmed across the Ohio River in Milton, Kentucky, at the Moffett Cemetery.
It didn’t take us too long to find the area of the cemetery where this was filmed, it was fairly small, we could see it was close to the edge of the cliff, and there was a prominent monument in one scene, though we weren’t sure if it was a prop. There is a monument in the shot with Dean Martin that was a prop.
It was a lot neater, with no overgrowth 51 years ago!
We looked out for this area, unsure of whether this monument was also a movie prop.
It was real!
This view overlooks the Ohio River, with the Madison-Milton Bridge (US 421) to the right.
Pat did the honors of stepping into Frank Sinatra’s role.
The monument behind Dean Martin is a prop.
Main Street (SR 56) – Madison, Indiana
As we headed back into Madison, we noticed this marker commemorating “Some Came Running” and its stars.
And for those looking for some interesting tidbits, I have read where Frank Sinatra dreaded his time in Madison. He was not comfortable or happy with the idea of being stuck in such a small “hick” town. To help him tolerate his time in Madison, Frank wanted his best friend, Dean Martin, to accompany him and play professional gambler, Bama Dillert.
Dean was more than happy to oblige for his friend, and in fact, greatly enjoyed his time in Madison. Hailing from Steubenville, Ohio, Dean felt very much at home in the small, Midwest town of Madison. I have been to Steubenville also, and it is very similar to Madison.
Joliet Correctional Center (aka Joliet Prison) – SR IL 171, Joliet, Illinois
Dixie Square Mall – Harvey, Illinois
Quality Inn – 3801 North Mannheim Road, Schiller Park, IL
In trying to put the band back together, Jake and Elwood discover that many of their former band members are now in a band called “Murph and the Magic Tones” and playing at the lounge at a Holiday Inn. Jake and Elwood are horrified to find them in red velvet suits, singing “Quando Quando Quando.”
August 2009: Of course, all of the glorious Holiday Inn “Great Signs” have gone away, and even the iconic Holiday Inn font is gone too. Holiday Inn has of course, deemed it too dated, and replaced it with a “fresh, modern” look. (In other words, a boring, generic corporate logo).
This location is now a Quality Inn. My photo is not at the same angle as the one above, I was on the opposite side of the street, but it is in the same direction. If you click on the screen capture above and view the full-size version, you should be able to see the interstate overpass more clearly. The traffic signal on the right is just visible as well.
Illinois SR 59, West Chicago, Illinois
Jake and Elwood run out of gas, and arrive at this gas station (also out of gas!).
August 2009: This location is nothing more than a concrete foundation overgrown with weeds. In some ways, it’s difficult to identify this location as the correct one, but upon closer look, it’s obvious. The curve of the road, the power lines, and even the billboards are in the correct location. There are also several cuts in the curb for the entries.
West Wind Motel – IL SR 38, West Chicago, Illinois
Elwood propositions the Chic Lady (Twiggy) to meet him at a nearby motel, and surprise…she shows up! But Elwood will not, so here she is, waiting (and waiting) at the West Wind Motel.
The West Wind Motel is located at 28W721 Roosevelt Road (IL SR 38) in West Chicago, Illinois. The location doesn’t look too different now, with the exception of a change of color of the bottom portion of the motel, and a sign on the building appears to have been removed, along with the phone booth. The old neon sign is still there, though!
My daughter Amber documented the following series of photos from “Men in Black II”
New York Subway – 81st Street Station / Museum of Natural History
Hayden Planetarium – New York, New York
Famous Ben’s Pizza of Soho – New York, New York
Here’s a random collection of movie filming locations, of which I don’t have enough photos to warrant a separate page.
FAO Schwarz, 5th Avenue & 58th Street, New York, New York
12-year old Josh Baskin, frustrated at his slight stature, turns into a grownup after making a wish with a fortune telling machine called Zoltar. After frantically searching for the Zoltar machine to turn back into a kid, Josh has some time on his hands, while waiting for information from the Department of Consumer affairs as to the location of a Zoltar machine, and gets a job in the data processing department at MacMillan Toys. One Saturday, Josh spends a little time browsing at New York’s famous toy store, FAO Schwarz. Many locations of the store were used here, and I visited the store many times with my then 4-year old daughter. (She was very much into “Hello Kitty” stuff and FAO Schwarz had a huge area dedicated to this cute kitty). At that time (around 1991-1992), the store had changed very little since the movie was filmed.
In one of the movie’s most memorable scenes, Josh runs into his boss, the owner of MacMillan Toys, who spends his Saturdays at FAQ Schwarz observing what toys kids are into. He and Josh spend a little time bonding as Josh explains his likes and dislikes of various toys (much to the bemusement of Mr. MacMillan). They stumble about a large floor model “piano,” where Josh starts to play “Heart and Soul.” Mr. MacMillan joins in, and together they do a well-coordinated routine consisting of Heart and Soul and Chopsticks. Having not had so much fun in a while, MacMillan taps into Josh’s knowledge of toys and makes him vice president….one of them, anyway – they have a hundred of them!
From the movie:
FAO Schwarz, approximately 1991 – 1992:
In May 2013, when the photo below was taken, the clock was no longer in this location, as the store was completely remodeled/renovated. It was hung on a wall above an escalator leading to the lower level. It still played “Welcome to Our World of Toys” every 15 minutes. The store closed on July 15, 2015.
Rye Playland, Rye, New York
Two scenes in Big were filmed at the location below, which is Rye Playland Amusement Park in Rye, New York. It was depicted in the movie to be “Seapoint Park” New York. In one scene, Josh goes to Seapoint Park on a date with his co-worker, Susan.
At the end of the movie, Josh returns to Seapoint Park after discovering that a Zoltar machine is here, so that he could make a wish to turn back to a kid again.
Rye Playland Boardwalk, taken approximately 1991:
Palisades Interstate Park – Fort Lee, New Jersey
Where Josh wishes he were “big” with the Zoltar machine at the carnival.
The site below where the carnival was held and where Josh rode the next day to find the site looking basically like we did.
Hotel St. James, 109 W 45th St, New York, NY
After finding himself “big” Josh needs a place to stay and selects the Hotel St. James. During our stay here in May 2009, we did not find it at ALL in the condition from the movie. Rooms were pretty small, but that’s about it. I should’ve taken some interior lobby photos, as those scenes were filmed there.
Jingle All the Way
Mickey’s Dining Car – St. Paul, Minnesota
36 7th St W, St Paul, MN
Bethesda Fountain in Central Park – New York, New York
This is from a scene from “The Producers,” in which down-and-out Broadway producer, Max Bialystock (Lane) is trying to convince his mousy accountant, Leo Bloom (Broderick) to participate in a get-rich scheme. They will oversell shares in a Broadway show, keep the additional money and go to Rio. But in order for the scheme to work, the show must be a “surefire flop.” Leo is too scared to do it, and runs away as Max desperately convinces him that it will work (“We Can Do It”).
Planes, Trains and Automobiles
The Sun Motel – Braidwood, Illinois
Del Griffith (John Candy) and Neal Page (Steve Martin) are two very different businessmen who met by chance in New York City when Del “steals” Neal’s cab to the airport. Unfortunately, the simple, short flight from New York to Chicago just before Thanksgiving turns into a two-day ordeal, bringing Del and Neal together as they make their way from New York to Chicago by way of Wichita, Kansas.
In this scene, they are waiting for a ride to the “people” train station, 40 miles away, which they will make sitting in the back of a pickup truck. They just spent the night sharing the last motel room in town, at the fictional “Braidwood Inn.” This motel is actually in Braidwood, Illinois along I-55.
From the movie
A Christmas Story
The house in the movie “A Christmas Story” is located in Cleveland, Ohio. For more information, click the link for the official site. You can visit it and go on a tour! The house was being restored when we passed through Cleveland in July 2007, we just took a couple of exterior photos.