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Guide to the Best Filming Locations in Los Angeles

The Best Filming Locations in Los Angeles

Location, location, location.

The setting of your video can be as important as your cast or your messaging.

It can amplify your message, showcase your product, illustrate your cause, or set the mood to warm up your audience. 

Location is everything.

When it comes to location diversity and opportunity, Los Angeles offers an embarrassment of riches. You’ll find iconic film locations, the unmatched natural beauty of California beaches, luxurious mansions, dream-worthy beach homes, or plenty of the grittier side of Los Angeles. It’s all there to star in your production, or provide the perfect backdrop. 

When filming in the City of Angels, it’ll be easy to scout your perfect location.

A good production company will know what’s available and will have the right connections with location scouts and venue owners to make it happen.

And they will build that perfect location into your storyboards early in the process.

Maybe your cause is local, and you need to establish a sense of place.

What says LA like the Hollywood sign?

Or your ultra-luxury swim line needs to be showcased in the perfect location. If your video production company is hooked up, they’ll know how to find the ideal secluded beach or exotic pool to showcase your stuff.

Prefer something off the beaten path?

Your video production agency can hook you the perfect ultra-modern enclave in the hills, or take you to a secluded spot on California’s beaches. 

Set up shop in a sun-drenched loft or an industrial warehouse if that better tells your story.

Regardless of where you set your masterpiece, you’ll want to harness the magic of Los Angeles. Take advantage of gorgeous natural light, atmospheric smog over the city, or the city’s raw sounds. 

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Got your heart set on a Los Angeles beach location?

We don’t blame you at all!

With the sunny weather and gorgeous and scenic coastline, a beachside shoot is a no-brainer.

There are tons of oceanfront spots to choose from, whether it’s a seaside town or a secluded beach stretch. 

Here are some top coastal locations that have made their debut in films or TV shows. 

Check them out; they were chosen for a reason!

1. Malibu and Malibu Pier

Nothing screams “LA Beach” like iconic Malibu. 

Rent out a rustic beach shack, oceanfront beach house, or an oceanfront estate. 

Showcase historic Malibu Pier that juts out 780 feet over well-known Surfrider Beach, and sports an observation deck and fishing spot that the locals love. 

Are you looking for the perfect seaside shack for your backdrop? 

Check out Neptune’s Net or one of its neighboring spots. 

The options in Malibu are unlimited. 

2. Westward Beach

Westward Beach, located on the northwestern side of Point Dume, offers amazing views of a dramatic 200-foot cliff. The beach, also known as Point Dume State Park is a half-mile long and has been featured in many films and music videos. Maybe you recognize it from one of Taylor Swift’s 22 music videos that have been filmed there. 

3. El Segundo Beach

If you’re looking for something less crowded, El Segundo Beach may just be your location. It usually is less crowded than some of its neighboring beaches. You’ll find volleyball nets, plenty of surfers, and a bike path with some great views. The LAX plane traffic overhead or the El Segundo, Power Plant smokestacks, could add a powerful and unique touch to your production (or not). 

4. Venice Beach

The world-famous Venice Beach Boardwalk is a bustling and iconic spot and famed for its people watching. If you want eclectic, this is it. Choose from one of the many hangouts on the boardwalk or just let the boardwalk be the star. 

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5. Lee Carrillo State Park

Carrillo State Park has all the diversity you can want in a beach location. Its 1.5-mile coastline features breathtaking rocky cliffs, reefs, tide pools, and caves. Cast this seaside wonderland in your next production.

6. El Matador State Park

For sheer beauty, El Matador State Park is unmatched. 

With sparkling azure waters, large rock formations, scattered boulders, and caves, it’s a stunner and known as one of LA’s most picturesque sites. You will have to haul yourself and equipment down a steep dirt path to get to the sand – but it’s well worth the hike. 

How do you get access to the Best filming location in Los Angeles?

You know how LA works. “It’s all in who you know.”

And a good production company will know the right people.

Los Angeles, the film industry hub, is full of location scouts, some good, and some, well. You know.

Location scouts understand how vital location is to production and work very hard to build a spectacular and interesting database. They can be useful in finding just the right spot if you have a unique request that’s not in their database. They will negotiate access to filming locations on behalf of photography, filming, or advertising professionals. 

Many amazing locations are made available for photoshoots, commercials, and film shoots. 

Property owners will often list their property for quick shoots or longer projects with booking agents just as they would list a property rental with AirBnB. Production professionals from film, TV, and advertising will scout the locations and book through these agencies. 

Your location scout or production professional will be responsible for insurance and filming permits. Be sure that’s in place!!

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Tips to scouting your perfect location

  • Budget

“Money talks” – sometimes.

Many of the key locations will require that your location scout or agency “sell” your project, convincing the owners or managers that your agency is responsible, trustworthy, and low-risk.

This is where relationships and reputation rule.

Unless your location budget is unlimited (doubtful), you may need to make some concessions. A $1000 budget in West LA won’t go far, while it may get you what you want in the San Fernando Valley.

  • The details

Your agency will need to share the details of the shoot upfront. 

Will you be shooting late at night, will it involve pets, stunts, or require exterior lighting rigs or noise? This may preclude you from securing some locations.

  • House rules

Many locations have very specific house rules, and your production company will need to be sure that you can adhere to them without jeopardizing your production or adding costs. 

When you’re ready to shoot your production in the “City of the Angels,” be sure to work with a reputable and experienced agency that will take their knowledge and connections into consideration when fulfilling your vision for your production. 

Check out some of our previous work filmed in Los Angeles

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