Thousand Oaks in popular culture
Thousand Oaks has been immortalized in the silver screen countless of times. The city is often used by the entertainment industry for movies, TV shows, and commercials due to its proximity to Hollywood and its innate natural beauty. Here are some of the films and TV series that shot scenes in this picturesque location.
Wildwood Regional Park
Thousand Oaks and its neighboring areas are popular filming locations for various dramas. This is mostly due to the region’s landscape, which fits the exterior specifications well without having to venture far from Hollywood. Perhaps the most famous
TV production that filmed in Thousand Oaks is Gunsmoke, which ran from 1955 to 1975. This well-received classic TV series filmed extensively at the 1,700-acre Wildwood Regional Park, which also occupies land in southern Moorpark and northern Newbury Park.
When you explore Wildwood Regional Park you’ll understand why a Western drama series like Gunsmoke was filmed in such a location. This sprawling park has a wide range of attractions, from rock formations to waterfalls. The park also has a wildlife corridor, and the local flora and fauna in the area flourish within the facility.
Wildwood Regional Park was a top choice for TV and movie productions during the 1930s to 1960s. You might recognize some of the following movie and TV series titles:
- Davy Crockett, King of the Wild Frontier
- The Grapes of Wrath
- Duel in the Sun
- Wuthering Heights
- Dodge City
- The Rifleman
- Flaming Star
- The Big Valley
The perfect location for Western dramas
Filming isn’t isolated in Wildwood Regional Park. Thousand Oaks and its neighboring areas were frequently used by TV and film production crews. The region’s rural appearance and rolling hills definitely contributed to its fame as one of the top choices among location scouts when it comes to western settings easily accessible from downtown LA or Hollywood.
If you’re thinking Thousand Oaks is only popular with old movies and TV series, think again. The city remains a popular destination for filming movies and TV productions. Here are some of the more recent movies that filmed in the area:
- Doctor Dolittle (1998) – This American comedy film was directed by Betty Thomas and starred Eddie Murphy as the famous Dr. Dolittle. Inspired by the Doctor Dolittle series by Hugh Lofting, the actual movie made no use of the source material aside from the same name and Dr. Dolittle’s ability to talk to animals.
- American Pie (1999) – A cult favorite, American Pie served as the directorial debut of brothers Paul and Chris Weitz. Although the film was set in Michigan, the production was actually shot in Southern California, particularly in Long Beach. American Pie’s success led to three sequels, the latest of which was released in 2012.
- Memoirs of a Geisha (2005) – The film adaptation of Arthur Golden’s novel, Memoirs of a Geisha told the story of Chiyo, a girl who eventually became the geisha Sayuri. The production was filmed in several locations, including Kyoto (Japan) as well as northern and southern California. Most of the film set shot on a ranch in Thousand Oaks.
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