El Dorado County’s self-guided movie-location tour wows
The El Dorado Lake Tahoe Film & Media Office has compiled an impressive lineup of films and locations into a map, guide and smart phone link promising a fact-filled film-oriented road odyssey that includes trivia and directions to exact locations.
Most of the locations are within ... the most picturesque scenery in the area, starting with Highway 49 between Cool and Coloma, and including Highway 193 to Georgetown.
Thirty locations are on the map and Kathleen Dodge, executive director of the El Dorado County film effort, pointed out that they’re all either on publicly accessible land or in private locations where owners have agreed to be part of the tour and all that entails.
Dodge is enthusiastic about a concept that blends the county’s movie-making past with present-day tourism opportunities.
Indiana Jones fans can get their Spielbergian juices flowing on the South Fork of the American river, where a scene was shot for 1984’s “Temple of Doom.”
“Memoirs of a Geisha” from 2005 made it to the Cronin Ranch for some South Fork shots near Coloma on a memorably rainy day. Dodge recalled that El Dorado County and the Cronin Ranch stepped in when the Pacific Northwest river initially tagged for filming flooded.
El Dorado County’s Tahoe area can claim filming locations for some hits such as 1998’s “City of Angels” with Nicholas Cage and Meg Ryan, including Fallen Leaf Lake and Emerald Bay. “The Bodyguard,” starring Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston also lensed in the high country.
Tucked away on the northwestern portion of the county, Georgetown was discovered by Hollywood in the mid-1990s, when East West Film Partners used its Main Street to stage a touch football game that served as a crucial plot element in 1996’s “Good Luck.” The townspeople served as extras as star Gregory Hines maneuvered a wheelchair during the shoot.
Nearby, the Middle Fork of the American River near Cool was the scene of an intense stunt crash into the water for “Breakdown.” Starring Kurt Russell, the thriller about rogue truckers was released in 1997.
“The tour should be super fun – especially if you watch the films before you go,” Dodge said.
Copies of the fold-out map are available at the El Dorado County Chamber of Commerce office in Placerville. Dodge said the number to call to have a copy sent out is (530) 621-5885. The app is coming soon at http://www.filmtahoe.com/guide/
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