1. Los Angeles: Self-Guided Tour of Iconic Filming Locations
With an app that functions as your guide, audio tour, and map all in one, this self-guided driving tour of Los Angeles Filming Locations is flexible and customizable. Choose which spots you want to see most and go right to them. To get started, simply download the app, then follow the audio instructions and route. As an added perk, most stops along the tour have animated videos allowing you to visualize what you cannot see, such as snapshots of interior rooms. Visit the site where Joe Mantell uttered the famous words “Forget it Jake, it’s Chinatown” in Roman Polanski’s all-time classic, “Chinatown,” and take in some striking scenery while you’re there. See a courthouse from “The Dark Knight Rises,” a police station from “Blade Runner,” and a bank from “Catch Me if You Can," all the same building: Union Station. If old-timey sci-fi is more your speed, check out the Los Angeles City Hall, featured in “War of the Worlds” and “The Adventures of Superman.” Take some time to check out the Bradbury Building, where the climactic final showdown takes place in “Blade Runner.” Discover some surprising facts about that famous scene. Banks tend not to fare too well in Hollywood, and this couldn’t be truer of the next stop, where Doc Oc wreaked havoc in “Spiderman 2” and Jim Carrey was robbed in “The Mask.” If you’re into surrealism, you’ll find it at the Palace Theater, which doubled as the mysterious Club Silencio in David Lynch’s mind-bending “Mulholland Drive.” Fans of the supernatural can’t miss the Cicada Club, the setting of one season of “American Horror Story.” Stop at Millennium Biltmore, where the ghostbusters catch their first ghost (and break a few things in the process). If you’ve ever wondered how Hollywood gets away with all its destruction, you’ll get a glimpse of that here. Travelers needing a meal break can dine like Denzel at the Pacific Dining Car, where Denzel Washington’s character takes Ethan Hawke for a meal in the cop thriller “Training Day.” Those with a bad case of nostalgia will definitely want to stop by Echo Park Lake, home to none other than the lagoon from “Gilligan’s Island.” For the contemporary film-lover, this park is also home of Dom’s house in the “Fast and Furious” franchise. Take a step back in time at the Music Box Steps, where Laurel and Hardy performed one of their most iconic bits. Head to The Virgil for a more contemporary musical landmark. This was where Lady Gaga first performed in “A Star Is Born.” Most high schools never see a serious film crew, but it’s part of the culture at John Marshall High School, which has served as a set for everything from “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” to “Nightmare on Elm Street.” Finally, pay a picturesque visit to Griffith Observatory. This observatory wasn’t just a filming site for movies like “Rebel Without a Cause” and “La La Land,” it also offers the best views of Los Angeles anyone could ask for. Finish off your tour by getting close to the famous Hollywood sign and seeing the whole city sparkling below.