50 FIRST DATES
About The Production
Originally the story for 50 First Dates was set in Seattle. It was Sandler's
idea to move the story to Hawaii. "Once Adam talked about moving the story
to Hawaii," recounts Ewing "it just seemed like the very best possible
place to do it for many different reasons. You don't see many movies shot there,
so it was a great experience to film in a different locale. And it is such a
spectacularly beautiful place for a romantic comedy."
The movie shot for six weeks in Hawaii, but the other six weeks were shot in and
around Los Angeles. Like a huge circus coming into town one night and leaving at
dusk the following day, the 50 First Dates production roamed Los Angeles County
filming at the Cabrillo Beach Bath House, the American Cetacean Society, the
Brigantine Boatworks in San Pedro, the Ocean Trails Golf Course in Rancho Palos
Verdes and Leo Carillo State Beach in Malibu, as well as the Unocal Building in
downtown Los Angeles.
In all, 50 First Dates filmed at more than a dozen locations on Oahu, beginning
with Marlin's house in Waikane and ending on Henry's boat in Heeia Kea Harbor in
Kaneohe. In between, the company criss-crossed the island for six weeks filming
at such remote locations as the Kualoa Ranch in Kaaawa Valley, on dirt roads in
Wahiawa and Waialua, the pineapple fields of the Dole Food Company, at Makapuu
Lighthouse, at Sandy Beach - where only the bravest mount their boogie boards,
on the Dillingham Ranch and on the beach made famous in From Here to Eternity.
Other locations included Honolulu's Hawaii Film Studios and Island Seaplane
Airport and, perhaps most importantly, Henry's workplace, the Sea Life Park in
Although the scenes in Henry's office were filmed on stage in Los Angeles, most
of the exteriors were shot at Sea Life Park. Situated on Oahu's east shore
overlooking the Pacific, Sea Life Park is known not only as a refuge for sea
mammals who have been injured but as a facility to educate the public on the
importance of marine ecology. Among the areas used in scenes for the movie were
the Sea Lion Pool and the Dolphin Cove, where the playful dolphins showed off
for the cameras.
Upon returning from Hawaii, the company flew to Napa Valley for scenes in the
Walrus Cove and Shark Tunnel at the Six Flags Marine World in Vallejo,
California, and then to Whittier, Alaska, for a final day of filming at sea in
Prince William Sound.
There were three major sets built on stages at the Culver Studios and at Sony
Studios. The first was the interior of the Hukilau CafĂ©, the interior of the
Whitmore house and the interior of Henry's office. Comments producer Giarraputo,
"We were lucky enough to be able to work with a lot of wonderful people,
many of whom we had worked with before. It makes it easier when you know the
team and can speak in shorthand."
Production designer Alan Au, who had collaborated with Segal and Happy Madison
on Anger Management, returned to oversee the design and construction of the
interior sets. "The biggest challenge for the art department," he
relates, "was that we were filming exterior scenes at actual Hawaiian
locations and needed to match the buildings on stage in Los Angeles.
"In my initial talks with Peter Segal, he was clear that he wanted to show
the 'other side' of Oahu, not just the resort side," Au continues. "He
wanted to show a more rural, countryside. When we began to scout, we found that
most of what we wanted was on what's called the Windward side of the island,
which has beautiful beaches and is very green and lush."
Adds art director Domenic Silvestri, "We researched traditional Hawaiian
buildings rather than the modern structures you find in Waikiki. We discovered
that because of the warm and humid climate, to capture the breezes, there is an
incredible openness to Hawaiian
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