In honor of 90th Oscars, learn about films shot in Tahoe |

In honor of 90th Oscars, learn about films shot in Tahoe

Autumn Whitney
The 90th Academy Awards are held Sunday, March 4.
Getty Images/iStockphoto | iStockphoto

Where to watch

Looking for fellow entertainment enthusiasts to catch the 90th Academy Awards with? The Loft, located in Heavenly Village on South Shore, is hosting an Oscars party in its lounge — and it’s one you won’t want to miss, as all hi-def screens will be tuned to the festivities.

Doors open at 4 p.m. for red carpet viewing before the live broadcast starts one hour later. The event is family-friendly, and guests over the age of 21 receive a complimentary glass of champagne upon entry. Learn more about the event on The Loft’s Facebook page (@thelofttahoe).

The 90th Academy Awards are here — on Sunday, March 4, the biggest names in showbiz will flood into Los Angeles’ Dolby Theatre for the hottest night in Hollywood, hosted once again by Jimmy Kimmel. From the breakout thriller “Get Out” to coming-of-age stories “Call Me by Your Name” and “Lady Bird” to World War II pictures “Dunkirk” and “The Darkest Hour,” this year’s best picture nominees are all about drama.

In honor of the movie industry’s largest awards ceremony, we’ve brought a bit of the silver screen to our publication. While Lake Tahoe doesn’t necessarily have the glitz and glam of Hollywood entertainment, some of the industry’s most well-known faces have made the trip to our region for filming. Chances are you’ll recognize a few of the movies shot here in Tahoe.

Movies made prior to 2000

Charlie Chaplin starred in a 1925 film entitled “The Gold Rush,” in which he portrayed a prospector who travels to Alaska in search of gold. Truckee’s own Donner Summit was the site of production for a few weeks, and is seen in the movie as the Chilkoot Pass.

The 1935 film “The Call of the Wild,” which starred Clark Gable, includes views of Lake Tahoe’s Nevada side, which is also seen in the 1936 movie “Rose-Marie.” The latter film, about an opera singer who searches for her fugitive brother in the Canadian wilderness, was shot in a variety of places around the Tahoe Basin: South Lake Tahoe, Zephyr Cove, Emerald Bay State Park and Cascade Lake, to name a few.

One of the most iconic movies known to film in Lake Tahoe is 1974’s “The Godfather: Part II.” In the second installment of the Corleone saga, the family’s West Coast compound was located at the Kaiser Estate off Lake Tahoe’s West Shore.

Comedy legend Robin Williams visited South Lake Tahoe for the production of the 1983 movie “Survivors,” about two men who become heroes after preventing a hold-up at a bar, while Stephen King’s 1990 film “Misery” was shot across the lake in Truckee (Donner Summit portrays the Colorado Rockies).

In 1992’s “The Bodyguard,” Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston’s characters go on a retreat — and the scene was filmed at Fallen Leaf Lake, which is also seen in the 1998 movie “City of Angels” with Nicolas Cage and Meg Ryan (remember when she rode the bike through Tahoe?).

Movies made after the turn of the century

“The Deep End,” which debuted in 2001 and starred Tilda Swinton, was shot in a variety of places in the Tahoe Basin — in addition to Tahoma and Reno, Crystal Bay is seen as the casino where Margaret abandons Darby’s car.

Hallmark Entertainment movies “Straight from the Heart” and “A Place Called Home,” released in 2003 and 2004, respectively, were shot across El Dorado County. The former, a classic love story, filmed in South Lake Tahoe, Placerville and Sacramento. The latter features a young Shailene Woodley (star of “Divergent”) and the Tallac Historic Site.

The 2006 hit “Smokin’ Aces” shot primarily in Stateline at Caesars Tahoe (now MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa), which in the film went by the name “Nomad Hotel.”

Reno held a lengthy feature in 2011’s “The Muppets,” but Truckee’s Donner Summit was also featured in on-location driving scenes.

The 2014 movie “Last Weekend,” about a dysfunctional family who vacations in a lake house, shot on location around Lake Tahoe — largely in Tahoma and Tahoe City.

TV Shows

While these stories didn’t find homes on the big screen, episodes of “Modern Family” and “The Bachelor” were shot on Tahoe’s South Shore within the past year. The cast of the award-winning ABC comedy “Modern Family” filmed the season nine premiere back in August — the episode, which focuses on a family houseboat vacation, was primarily shot at Camp Richardson Historic Resort & Marina.

Two months later “The Bachelor” cast visited South Lake Tahoe and filmed at locations including Hard Rock Hotel & Casino and Valhalla Tahoe.

As fans of the long-running western television series “Bonanza” know, the show (which ran from 1959-1973) shot many of its scenes in and around the Tahoe Basin.

Information featured in this article was obtained through IMDb.

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