As the center of the film and television industries, Los Angeles hosts countless productions just about every day of the year. And because not all of them can be shot within the confines of a studio, there are more than a few famous backdrops scattered all over the city. Here are ten places you can check out without feeling too much like a tourist.
The Prince Restaurant doubled as the ‘Brown Derby’ when J.J. Gittes (Jack Nicholson) met with Evelyn Mulwray (Faye Dunaway) in Chinatown. It’s also been used as Merchants of Death hangout ‘Bert’s’ in Thank You for Smoking and ‘Clyde’s Bar,’ where Nick Miller (Jake Johnson) plies his trade in New Girl. The famous red vinyl booths were also frequented by Don Draper (Jon Hamm) and friends throughout Mad Men. Several other films and television shows have shot there as well.
The Prince Restaurant & Bar, 3198 W 7th St, Los Angeles, CA +1 213-389-1586
The Formosa Cafe was where Detective Ed Exley (Guy Pearce) famously told Lana Turner that ‘a hooker cut to look like Lana Turner is still just a hooker’ in L.A. Confidential. The popular nightspot has also appeared in Swingers, The Majestic and Still Breathing, and has been a favorite hangout of A-listers for generations. It’s also the spot where Eddie Murphy picked up a transvestite prostitute and Shannen Doherty broke a beer bottle on an unfortunate patron’s car.
Formosa Cafe, 7156 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood, CA +1 323-850-9050
Boardner’s is the location where Ed Wood (Johnny Depp) searches for encouragement while reading unfavorable reviews of his work in Ed Wood. It’s also the bar where Captain Smith (James Cromwell) gives Bud White (Russell Crowe) his gun and badge back in L.A. Confidential. Several other films and television shows, including Leaving Las Vegas and Beverly Hills 90210, have filmed there as well. They also claim to be the last place the Black Dahlia ever bought a drink.
Boardner’s, 1652 N Cherokee Ave, Los Angeles, CA +1 323-462-9621
Point Dume State Beach is probably best known as the location where George Taylor (Charlton Heston) spotted the remnants of the Statue of Liberty in the original Planet of the Apes. It’s also the site of the bonfire scene in The Big Lebowski, Dr. Evil’s volcano island in Austin Powers: The Spy who Shagged Me and Seth and Summer’s farewell in The OC. Dozens of other productions, including Iron Man, Modern Family and Entourage have filmed here as well.