Movies Made at Point Lobos

In 1914 the first movie to be filmed at Point Lobos was "Valley of the Moon" directed by Hobart Bosworth and starring Jack Conway and Myrtle Stedman. Thus began a long period of moving making. For the next twenty-six years over thirty films were shot at the reserve.

In 1920 the movie “Foolish Wives was filmed. At least three sets were built. One large set depicting “Monte Carlo” covered most of Sand Hill. This silent film, by Universal Pictures, was written and directed by Erich von Stroheim, who also starred in it. In 1928, the movie "Evangeline" directed by Edwin Carewe of United Artists, and starring Roland Drew and Delores del Rio, was filmed. Half the population of Carmel was out working as extras. During one scene the village was burned down. Some trees were burned in the fire with much brush and grassland was also destroyed. The after scars from the movie set that was built above Headland Cove remained until the late 1940s while the vegetation slowly recovered. This human erosion was one of the main examples that were shown as reasons why the State should purchase Point Lobos for the State Park System. For years after, people in the local community were opposed to film companies using Point Lobos. They wanted the landscape protected from damage.

Protection of the Park

On December 30, 1944, the State Park Commission passed the following resolution. "If any future applications should be made for the use of the park for making moving pictures a hearing will be held at which both the representatives of the moving picture industry and the residents of the vicinity of the park and others who object to the use of the park for moving picture purposes, can present their views."

On December 20, 1945, the "movie battle" began. The Point Lobos League was formed as a protective organization following the making of a motion picture in which considerable damage to foliage and terrain was caused. The President of the organization was photographer Edward Weston of the Carmel Highlands. Representatives of the Point Lobos League announced that they would send representatives to Sacramento to participate in a State Park Commission hearing in which Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studio was seeking permission to make a move at Point Lobos.

Presented at the meeting were personal views and letters on the pro and con reasons for having pictures made at Point Lobos. The Monterey Peninsula Associates entered their approval for movies as this added a shot in the business arm and brought the park to all the people instead of just to those who could pay to see it in person. After all views were expressed, the State Park Commission voted approval for filming. At this point, the Point Lobos League said they would become watchdogs and keep an eye on everything that the movie people did. "Movie crews from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer expected to be 'on location' at Point Lobos in the near future will do well to restrain any urge to monkey with the sea anemones or make off with decorative bits of Cypress bough."

Then on February 6th, MGM decided to tone down their original plans at Point Lobos which included "construction of a small cottage; importation of considerable topsoil and the planting of a Victory Garden and construction of two piers." The new plan was to let actress Greer Garson walk through the Cypress trees and along the rocks near the ocean.

This was approved by everyone and the great "movie battle" came to a sudden end. The movie "Desire Me" directed by George Cukor and starring Greer Garson and Robert Mitchum was completed in 1946.

With protection of Point Lobos as the key factor filming was allowed to continue. Eleven more films were filmed at or near Point Lobos between 1946 and 1989. Present-day filming includes many still fashion shoots for names like Eddie Bauer, Sports Illustrated, and Neiman Marcus.

Movies Made at Point Lobos - Films, Stars, Directors

* Point Lobos State Natural Reserve or adjacent locations were used for the filming of a scene or scenes.

Valley of the Moon
Director: Hobart Bosworth
Jack Conway, Mrytle Stedman

See America First
Director: Eugene W. Castle

The Isle of Life
Director: Burton George
Frank Whitson, Roberta Wilson
Universal Pictures

Pidgin Island
Director: Fred J. Balshofer
Harold Lockwood, May Allison

Beautiful Monterey
Prism Motion Pictures

A Man of Honor
Director: Fred J. Balshofer
Harold Lockwood, Bessie Eyton

Foolish Wives
Director: Eric von Stroheim
Erich von Stroheim, Mae Busch
Universal Pictures

Passion Fruit
Director: John F. Ince
Edward Earle, Coraldina
Metro Pictures

The Love Light
Director: Frances Marion
Thomson, Mary Pickford
United Artists

The Mistress of Shenstone
Director: Henry King
Roy Stewart, Pauline Frederick
Robertson-Cole Productions

Tess of the Storm Country
Director: John S. Robertson
Lloyd Hughes, Mary Pickford
Mary Pickford Company

Director: Tom Forman
Lon Chaney, Marguerite de la Motte, Preferred Pictures

The Eleventh Hour
Director: George Ridgwell
Charles Jones, Shirley Mason
Stoll Productions

The Sunshine Gatherers
Director: George E. Stone

Why Women Love
Director: Edwin Carewe
Robert Frazer, Blanche Sweet
Edwin Carewe Productions

Paid To Love
Director: Howard Hanks
William Powell, Virginia Valli
Fox Film Corporation

Director: Edwin Carwe
Warner Baxter, Dolores del Rio
United Artists

Married Alive
Director: Emmett Flynn
Lou Tellegen, Margaret Livingston
William Fox Film Company

Rose of the Golden West
Director: George Fitzmaurice
Gilbert Roland, Mary Astor
First National Pictures

Director: Edwin Carwe
Roland Drew, Dolores del Rio
United Artists

The Iron Mask
Director: Allan Dwan
Douglas Fairbanks
United Artists

Daddy Long Legs
Director: Alfred Santell
Warner Baxter, Janet Gaynor
Fox Film Corporation

Miracle Man
Director: Norman McLeod
Chester Morris, Sylvia Sydney

Peg O' My Heart
Director: Robert Z. Leonard
Onslow Stevens, Marion Davies
Hearst/MGM Pictures

Paddy The Next Best Thing
Director: Harry Lachman
Warner Baxter, Janet Gaynor
Fox Film Corporation

He Was Her Man
Director: Lloyd Bacon
James Cagney, Joan Blondell
Warner Brothers

Treasure Island
Director: Victor Fleming
Wallace Beery, Jackie Cooper

Captain January
Director: David Butler
Guy Kibbee, Shirley Temple
20th Century Fox

Maid of Salem
Director: Frank Lloyd
Fred MacMurray, Claudette Colbert

Director: Clarence Brown
Charles Boyer, Greta Garbo

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Laurence Olivier, Joan Fontaine
Selznick International

Edge of Darkness
Director: Lewis Milestone
Errol Flynn, Ann Sheridan
Warner Brothers

Lassie Come Home
Director: Fred M. Wilcox
Roddy McDowell, Elizabeth Taylor

Salome, Where She Danced
Director: Charles Lamont
Rod Cameron, Yvonne de Carlo

Desire Me
Director: George Cukor
Robert Mitchum, Greer Garson

The Woman on Pier 13
Director: Robert Stevenson
Robert Ryan, Lorraine Day

Japanese War Bride
Director: King Vidor
Don Taylor, Shirley Yamaguchi
20th Century Fox

Director: Andrew Stone
Louis Jordan, Doris Day

A Summer Place
Director: Melmer Daves
Troy Donahue, Sandra Dee
Warner Brothers

The Notorious Landlady
Director: Richard Quine
Jack Lemmon, Kim Novak

The Sandpiper
Director: Vincente Minelli
Richard Burton, Elizabeth Taylor

My Blood Runs Cold
Director: William Conrad
Troy Donohue, Joey Heatherton
Warner Brothers

The Graduate
Director: Mike Nichols
Dustin Hoffman, Anne Bancroft
Embassy Picture Corporation

The Big Bounce
Director: Alex March
Ryan O'Neal, Leigh Taylor-Young
Warner Brothers

Director: Hal Bartlett
Kent Lane, Michele Carey

Blind Date
Director: Blake Edwards
Bruce Willis, Kim Basinger
Tri-Star Pictures

Turner and Hooch
Director: Robert Spottiswoods
Tom Hanks, Mare Winningham
Disney Studios