When we think of where motion pictures are filmed, California and New York quickly come to mind. Scenes shot at the Golden Gate Bridge and the Empire State Building have become iconic in U.S. culture.
For the last 100 years, Hollywood — whose name is written in big, bold letters on the Hollywood hillside — has been the location for most of the films we have on our bucket list. Southern California became the mecca of films because of its favorable weather as well as the availability of cheap labor. And California was also beyond the reach of celebrated inventor Thomas Edison, who controlled all aspects of the film industry that was born on the East Coast.
If the movies aren’t filmed on the West Coast, the studios tend to go to New York to take advantage of some America’s enduring images, such as Central Park and the Statue of Liberty.
Even so, the film-going public, as well as the motion picture artistic community, demands authenticity. While going on the road comes with a price, there is no substitute for the screen-filling landscapes in Arizona and Utah that made westerns such as “The Searchers” unforgettable, or the gritty docks operated by longshoremen in Hoboken, New Jersey, that made “On the Waterfront” a classic. The film industry’s need for genuine locations also means more dollars in state coffers.
Each state has unique characteristics that make it attractive to filmmakers, and with that in mind, 24/7 Wall St. has tapped various resources to find out what is the best movie filmed in every state.