In addition to backlots, most of the major movie studios used to own ranch properties where they could film grand vistas, cowboy stunts, or Scarlett O’Hara in front of a glorious sunrise. The Lasky ranch became Forest Lawn cemetery, the RKO and Iverson ranches were subdivided into tract homes, and the Paramount and Fox ranches became part of the park system.
Some of those old film and TV sets, though, have remained intact. Next time you’re hiking in Malibu Creek State Park, keep an eye out for remnants of the set from the TV series M*A*S*H. If you drop in to the California State Parks administrative office there, you’ll be inside a set built for the 1948 film Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House.
If you love hiking, old movies, and archeology, you can join retired park ranger Mike Malone at the Hollywood Heritage museum on Wednesday night for a presentation on famous outdoor locations preserved on film. Malone will share rare photographs and film clips like this 97-year-old glamour shot of Mary Pickford filming Daddy-Long-Legs at Malibu Creek State Park. I wonder if there are still fish in that pond?
Evening at the Barn: A History of Film Locations in and Around the Santa Monica Mountains
March 9, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
Hollywood Heritage museum
2100 N. Highland Ave., Hollywood