Seeing Stars: Where the Movies Were Shot (on Location)


"ALMOST FAMOUS" told the story of a 15-year-old journalist's adventure traveling across the country with a rock band, based on the life story of director Cameron Crowe. Early on in the film, we see 'Penny Lane' (Kate Hudson) and young 'William Miller' (Patrick Fugit) run across Sunset Blvd to the Continental Hyatt Hotel - which they refer to as "The Riot House."

This is a very real hotel on the Sunset Strip, with a long history of wild rock & roll hijinks from heavy-duty partiers such as Led Zeppelin, Jim Morrison of the Doors and Little Richard (who lived in the hotel's penthouse.) But for the film, the front of the Hyatt was "digitally rebuilt" to match pictures of the Sunset Strip in the early '70s. And Cameron Crowe had the set decorators re-do the lobby of the Hyatt to look just like it did back then.

In this scene from the movie, Penny & William wander the hotel's hallways, where they encounter a young, eccentric Led Zeplin fan, and end up in the band's hotel room, where ''Penny Lane' delivers her "the smoking sign is out" speech and uses William as an excuse to meet up with 'Russell Hammond' (Billy Crudup) again.

The hotel's rooftop pool has also been in the movies. It was featured in the 1984 film "This is Spinal Tap." The party scenes from a Dwight Yoakam video, "These Arms," were also filmed up there, in 1998.

The Hyatt Hotel is located at 8401 W. Sunset Blvd., in West Hollywood, right across the street from the House of Blues.  

Later in the same movie ("ALMOST FAMOUS"), William, Penny and the band Stillwater arrive in what's supposed to be Tempe, Arizona and enter what's supposed to be the "King of the Road Motor Lodge." Only it's not Tempe. It's downtown Hollywood. And that lobby might look familiar since it's actually the lobby of the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, right across the street from the Chinese Theatre, at 7000 Hollywood Boulevard. They added a potted cactus and a few suits of armor, but anyone familiar with the hotel will recognize those Moorish arches, not to mention the baby grand piano 'Russell' plays while his friend warns him about not trusting the kid (because "he's the enemy.")  (Buy the movie)

[Other "Almost Famous" locations in L.A. include the Million Dollar Theatre in downtown Broadway (at 307 S Broadway), the Olympic Auditorium (at 1801 S Grand Ave.), the Hollywood Palladium (at 6215 Sunset Blvd.), the old Ambassador Hotel (at 3400 Wilshire Blvd) and the Western Dunes Motor Hotel (at 4300 Wilshire Blvd).]

  • The third installment of the movie thriller series, "SCREAM 3," (starring Courtney Cox & Neve Campbell) opens with a scene at an apartment house where a talk show host, 'Cotton Weary' (Liev Schreiber) and a young woman named 'Christine' (Kelly Rutherford) are murdered by the masked killer. That actual apartment house is located at 1336 Harper Ave., in West Hollywood, between Sunset Blvd and Santa Monica Blvd.

  • Another location seen in "SCREAM 3" was a sidewalk cafe where Courtney Cox & David Arquette had a conversation on restaurant's porch. That scene was shot on the porch of the Replay Cafe, an actual restaurant and store located at 8607 Melrose Ave. in West Hollywood (at the N.W. corner of Melrose and Westbourne Dr.)

  • Also in "SCREAM 3," the cast spent a lot of time being chased around 'Sunrise Studios', a fictitious studio where they were filming "Stab 3". Those scenes were really shot on the back lot of CBS Studio Center, located at 4024 Radford Ave. in Studio City.

  • In the 2000 comedy "BIG MOMMA'S HOUSE," (and it's 2006 sequel) Martin Lawrence's drag character lived in a small town in Georgia.

    But in reality, Big Momma's house was really located in the O.C., at 192 NShaffer Street, in Old Town OrangeCA.  

  • [ Warning: This is a private home.  Do not trespass on their property,
    knock on their door, or do anything else to disturb the residents. ]

    Don't miss our full pages on locations for 2000's
    "Charlie's Angels" and "End of Days"


    1920's - 1930's - 1940's - 1950's - 1960's - 1970's - 1980's - 1990 - 1991 - 1992 - 1993 - 1994
    1995 - 1996 - 1997 - 1998 - 1999 - 2000 - 2001 - 2002 - 2003 - 2004 - 2005 - 2006 - 2007- 2008
    2009 - 2010 - 2011 - 2012 - 2013


    * Locations marked by an asterisk (*) may be located in areas with high crime rates.
    Exercise reasonable caution.

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