Actual Southern California Locations where the
2007 movie, "Nancy Drew",
Drew", the 2007 movie version of
the classic girl sleuth's adventures, starring Emma
Roberts, is a virtual treasure trove of
Los Angeles filming locations.
That might seem odd, since
the original Nancy Drew stories took place in Nancy's fictional Midwestern home town
of River Heights.
But in the movie, Nancy and
her Dad temporarily leave River Heights and move to Hollywood, where Nancy gets caught
up in an old mystery surrounding the death of a movie actress.
Among the L.A. locations in
the film are:
The movie opens with Nancy in a River Heights church, negotiating with two bungling burglars who were attempting to rob it.
This is an actual church, but far from the midwest. This is actually Calvary Presbyterian Church, at 1050 Fremont Avenue,
in South Pasadena, California.
As the name
suggests, the city of South Pasadena is just south of the city of
Pasadena, California, the home of the annual Tournament of Roses Parade
and the famed Rose Bowl.
has a midwestern look to it, right down to the architecture of the
homes and the kind of trees that line its streets, so the town is a
frequent filming spot for movies and TV shows that are set in the
[0:03:27]. They didn’t bother to change the church name on the sign out front for the movie. As you can see in the screencap above, it still bears the actual name of the South Pasadena church.
Which is somewhat odd, since when we see the church's interior [at 0:04:23], there are numerous statues of Mary and other saints, and Presbyterian churches generally do not allow statues...
Given the clergyman's collar, Irish accent and name of "Father Murray", my guess is that they meant it to be a Catholic church, and just didn’t think about changing the sign out front.
- The short scene where the cop cars (and fire trucks) are racing to
the church was shot with those cars
heading west on Mission Street (across train tracks) at Meridian
Avenue, in South Pasadena.
(That also happens to be the current
location of the 'Meyers House' from the original movie “Halloween”. The
camera is first looking south in this scene, then swings west as it follows the cars speeding
by. But if it had swung around a bit farther and looked north, you
could have seen the Meyers house.)
The church is about a quarter mile southeast of this intersection <– which means the cop cars were heading in the wrong direction. ;)
The sign is on the southwest lawn, which is on the same south side of the church where Nancy rappels down from the church roof, to the applause of onlookers [0:05: 37].
- Next, we see Nancy’s father driving her along a
tree-lined street (in a vintage blue convertible) and up to the front
of a suburban house (that appears to be the Drew family home in River
You'll find this house at 1002 Highland Street, in South
Pasadena. That’s the northeast corner of Highland & Meridian.
If the house looks familiar, it may be because it appeared in the 2007
reboot of "Halloween", where it appeared as the Strode house.)
[Warning: Remember that this is a private home. Do not trespass on their property,
knock on their door, or do anything else that might disturb the residents.]
- As Nancy and her father drive out of River Heights (and the locals
wave goodbye), we see a sort of town square, with a grassy area, a
smooth stone structure and a large green clock.
This scene was actually
shot immediately south of the intersection where they filmed the police
cars speeding past.
We are looking north on Meridian Avenue, from just south of
Mission Street, around 913 Meridian.
The Drews are
driving north up Meridian Ave.
grassy area is a curved center divider, and the
green clock is located on that divider. That rocky structure is a local
landmark known as the "Watering Trough and Wayside Station", and back
in 1906, when it was erected, it served as a resting spot for those
They put up a fake sign reading “River
Heights” in the center of that waystation (although you can’t really read it well).
( If you zoom in on this shot, you
can actually see the 'Meyers house' from "Halloween" in the background - it’s the blue
building with the gray roof, across the street to the right.)
- Next, we seethe high school which Nancy attends while she's in L.A., as well as the sports track behind
the school, where Nancy outraces her jealous classmates.
This is Hollywood
High School, at 1521 N. Highland
Ave,in Hollywood (at the northwest corner of Sunset & Highland).
Despite the Highland Ave address, this particular entrance, which we see in the film, actually faces Sunset Blvd.
The scene opens looking east down Sunset, as
students walk towards the high school, then the camera pans north to
show the school's south entrance steps (which is where the other girls
first see Nancy and give her odd looks because of the way she's dressed).
[0:21:58] - The scenes of Nancy running track were shot on the school track behind (northwest of) Hollywood High. The
camera is looking west/northwest.
[0:34:02] - She and Corky are seen walking south down an unusual street. Nancy wants to ask a question of someone working on a movie being shot there.
This is L.A.'s famous Olvera Street (after dark) - which is located just north of downtown L.A., and right across the street from Union Station.
Olvera Street is the historic, original Mexican plaza
where the city of Los Angeles was born over 200 years ago. It contains some of the oldest buildings in L.A.
The official address is 845 Alameda Street,
but that is somewhat deceptive. Alameda Street actually runs along the
east side of Olvera Street, while Main Street runs along its west
side. Olvera Street is sort of an alley in between those two
streets, which has been transformed into a colorful celebration of the
city's Mexican heritage - and a tourist mecca.
In that opening shot, they are at the south end of Olvera Street, where it opens up into the Plaza. Just as they walk out into the Plaza (in front of the Methodist church), they are accidentally swept up in the period movie that is being shot there, by an assistant director who assumes that Nancy is a movie extra.
[0:34:34] - Nancy is herded east, away from the Plaza (across Alameda Street) to the movie set on the steps of Union Station, where Nancy has an encounter with Bruce Willis (who plays himself, making a movie).
Bruce is filming a scene set in the 1950's, where he is reading the
Miranda rights to a crook he just arrested. But Nancy butts-in and tells Bruce that police didn’t read Miranda rights to suspects until 1963.
While there, she spots a major clue in the shadow of two crossed palm trees.
Union Station is L.A.'s central train station, an Art Deco treasure located at at
800 N. Alameda St., in downtown