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About The Production
Principal photography began November 11, 1996 in Los Angeles

Principal photography began November 11, 1996 in Los Angeles. "The film's locations are a tour of Los Angeles architecture," says production designer David Gropman. "You identify L.A. and it makes you feel that the film could only have been shot here. It completely personifies the world that the characters live in." Benton agrees, "for me the location of a film is always like a part of a character. It becomes a kind of invisible, informing spirit of the whole movie."

The former home of Cedric Gibbons/Delores Del Rio was one of the film's key locations. It became the setting for the Ames house, inhabited by the characters portrayed by Susan Sarandon and Gene Hackman. "The Ames house is virtually a character in this film. It is my child's idea of what a Hollywood house should be like," Benton adds. Gibbons was the Academy Award™ winning art director, head of the legendary MGM art department from 1924 until 1958 and the designer of the Oscar® statuette. In 1929, he designed (with the help of architect Douglas Honnold) a sleek Moderne-style home in a Santa Monica cul-de-sac for his new bride actress Delores Del Rio. The interior, with its use of lustrous materials and indirect lighting, makes visitors feel they are stepping onto a 1930's Art Deco movie set. As Gene Hackman sat in the adjoining tennis pavilion, he reflected, "I'm always fascinated by the history of Hollywood and the idea that Delores Del Rio could have been sitting right where we are today. These hills were full of the old movie stars of that era and that's what attracted me to the business in the beginning."

A never completed Frank Lloyd Wright project was the locale of Ames ranch house. The 120 acres, in the hills above Malibu overlooking the Pacific ocean, were originally owned by Arch Oboler, a major figure in the golden age of radio and producer of the first 3-D film. Construction began on the property in 1940 with Wright incorporating ideas from recent Taliesin West projects, using native rocks and masonry as a transition between the natural site and the other materials used in the buildings. Work came to a halt in 1946 with the death of one of Oboler's young sons in a tragic accident on the site. After Oboler's death in 1987, the property was sold. The main house was never built, but today the gatehouse, children's wing and studio still stand.

The site of the Raymond Hope house was a John Lautner designed home built in 1947 in the Hollywood Hills overlooking the San Fernando Valley. In an unusual coincidence, Lautner, then one of Wright's apprentice's, had worked on the aforementioned Malibu property.

The film also shot on the sound stages at Paramount, Raleigh and Sunset Gower Studios where interiors of the Gibbons and Lautner homes were meticulously recreated.

The "TWILIGHT" troupe was also the first film company to receive permission to shoot in a working police station - the Hollywood/Wilcox police station. Many of the station's officers and detectives were put to work as background in the scenes filmed over a five day period throughout the facility.

Other local locations included the Santa Monica pier and the Mandalay Beach Resort in Oxnard, California doubled as the film's Mexican location.

For award-wining cinematographer Piotr Sobocinski "controlling the light on this story is of the utmost importance. It's vital to give each actor the opportunity to step into or out of the light. What you see, or don't see, has a great deal to do with your perception of what is going on. I need rich blacks and dark


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