From the lakes of Minnesota to the hills of Tennessee, across the plains of Texas from sea to shining sea, movie magic happens all across the good ol' U-S-of-A. Wonderwall.com is taking a look back at the most popular film shot in each of the 50 states — from Alabama to Wyoming. Keep reading to see which states the sets of "Dirty Dancing," "Jurassic Park," "The Avengers" and more beloved films once called home…
The surprise 2017 hit "Get Out" was filmed in Alabama in early 2016. The Jordan Peele-directed thriller centers around a black man (Daniel Kaluuya) who visits the family of his white girlfriend (Allison Williams) at an eerie, isolated estate where racial tensions abound. The Oscar-nominated 2014 biopic "Selma" and the 2003 Tim Burton-directed fantasy-drama "Big Fish" were also shot in the state.
The opening sequences in the 1990 Jack Ryan movie "The Hunt for Red October," in which Sean Connery and Alec Baldwin starred, was reportedly filmed in Alaska. The thriller, which centers around a Soviet Union submarine captain and his attempts to either start or thwart a war with the United States, won an Oscar for best sound effects editing and earned two more Academy Award nominations. Two more popular adventure films — the Sean Penn-directed biopic "Into the Wild" and the big-screen adaptation of Jack London's novel "White Fang" — were also shot in the state.
Many films have been shot in Arizona over the years, but perhaps the most famous is the 1968 sci-fi classic "2001: A Space Odyssey." Director Stanley Kubrick reportedly shot the epic in several countries, but the alien planet depicted in the movie is actually Arizona's Monument Valley — at least in part.
Though the 1993 thriller "The Firm," in which Tom Cruise starred as a young lawyer working for a shady legal firm, was predominantly shot in Tennessee, some scenes were also filmed in Arkansas. Holly Hunter earned an Oscar nomination for her performance in the film.
It's a safe bet that most of the films you've seen in your life were shot in California, the home of Hollywood. Our personal favorite is 1967's "The Graduate," in which Dustin Hoffman starred as a college grad who has an affair with an older married woman. Mike Nichols won an Oscar for directing the drama, which earned six more Academy Award nominations, including best picture, best lead actor for Dustin, best lead actress for co-star Anne Bancroft and best adapted screenplay.
Director Steven Spielberg shot several scenes from the 1989 action flick "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" in Colorado. The third installment in the popular "Indiana Jones" franchise — in which Sean Connery and Harrison Ford starred — won an Oscar for best sound effects editing and earned two more Academy Award nominations.
Julia Roberts scored her big break when she starred in 1988's "Mystic Pizza," which was shot in various towns near the real Mystic, Connecticut. William R. Moses, Annabeth Gish, Lili Taylor, Vincent D'Onofrio and Adam Storke also starred in the coming-of-age rom-com.
The 1989 drama "Dead Poets Society," in which Robin Williams starred as a controversial English teacher at an all-boys school, was reportedly filmed at several locations in Delaware, including St. Andrew's School in Middletown. The film won an Oscar for best original screenplay and scored three more Academy Award nominations, including best picture, best director and best lead actor for Robin.
Though Los Angeles doubled for Miami in certain scenes in the 1983 drama "Scarface," much of the Brian De Palma-directed gangster flick was shot in Florida. Critics originally trashed the movie, which earned three Golden Globe nominations — including best actor in a drama for star Al Pacino, who had the title role — and went on to become one of the most iconic films in cinema history.
Georgia has become a popular filming location in recent years due to its tax incentives for filmmakers. Among the most popular movies shot in the Peach State are the second, third and fourth installments in the "Hunger Games" franchise: "Catching Fire," "Mockingjay – Part 1" and "Mockingjay – Part 2."
Director Steven Spielberg shot the 1993 action-thriller "Jurassic Park" predominantly on the Hawaiian island of Kauai. The iconic dino-flick won three Oscars: best sound, best sound effects editing and best visual effects. It's also one of our all-time favorite films!
The 2004 comedy "Napoleon Dynamite," in which Jon Heder starred, was reportedly shot around Franklin County, Idaho, in mid-2003. The 1997 disaster flick "Dante's Peak," parts of the 1999 action-comedy "Wild Wild West" and scenes in the 2001 rom-com "Town & Country" were also shot in the Gem State.
Writer-director John Hughes shot the iconic 1985 coming-of-age drama "The Breakfast Club" predominantly within Maine North High School in Des Plaines, Illinois, which had been shut down a few years before filming kicked off in early 1984. Ally Sheedy, Judd Nelson, Anthony Michael Hall, Emilio Estevez and Molly Ringwald starred in the beloved movie.
The 1993 football drama "Rudy," which centers around a high school football player (Sean Astin) with big dreams of playing for Notre Dame, was shot in Illinois and Indiana, where the college is located.
Iowa isn't exactly the most popular state for blockbuster film sets, though director Clint Eastwood shot the 1995 love story "The Bridges of Madison County" in the real county where the story takes place: Madison County, Iowa. Meryl Streep earned an Oscar nomination for her performance in the film, in which Clint also starred. The 1996 disaster flick "Twister" was also shot in the Hawkeye State.
The 1973 Great Depression-set drama "Paper Moon" — in which Ryan O'Neal starred alongside real-life daughter Tatum O'Neal — was shot in several small towns in Kansas. The young actress won an Oscar for her performance in the film, which scored three more Academy Award nominations, including best adapted screenplay.
The 1988 road-trip drama "Rain Man" took place all over the United Stated but was shot primarily at locations in Indiana and Kentucky. The film, in which Dustin Hoffman and Tom Cruise starred as estranged brothers, won four Oscars — best picture, best director, best original screenplay and best lead actor for Dustin — and earned another four Academy Award nominations.
Like Georgia, Louisiana has become a popular shooting location in recent years due to the state's tax incentives for filmmakers. Though the 2015 blockbuster hit "Jurassic World," in which Chris Pratt starred, was shot partially in Hawaii like earlier installments in the franchise, the bulk of the film was shot at various locations in the Bayou state — from Raleigh Studios in Baton Rouge and swamps in Slidell to Louis Armstrong International Airport and the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans.
The lauded 2001 crime-drama "In the Bedroom," which centers around a married couple following their son's murder, was reportedly shot in several locations around Maine, where the film is set. Marisa Tomei, Sissy Spacek and Tom Wilkinson all earned Oscar nominations for their performances in the movie, which also earned Academy Award nominations for best picture and best adapted screenplay.
Director Joel Schumacher reportedly shot the 1985 coming-of-age Brat Pack drama "St. Elmo's Fire," which centers around a group of Georgetown grads, at the University of Maryland after Georgetown refused to allow the film to shoot on its campus. Ally Sheedy, Judd Nelson, Emilio Estevez, Demi Moore, Mare Winningham, Rob Lowe and Andrew McCarthy comprised the ensemble cast.
Director Gus Van Sant shot the 1997 drama "Good Will Hunting," which is set at MIT, in Massachusetts. The film won two Oscars — best supporting actor for Robin Williams and best original screenplay for writers Ben Affleck and Matt Damon — and earned seven more nominations, including best picture, best director, best lead actor for Matt and best supporting actress for co-star Minnie Driver.
Principal photography for the 2016 blockbuster "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice" took place in Michigan, though some scenes were also shot in Illinois and New Mexico. Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill starred as the titular members of the Justice League.
The 1970 disaster-drama "Airport" was shot primarily at the Minneapolis–Saint Paul International Airport in Minnesota. Helen Hayes earned an Oscar for her performance in the film, which earned nine more Academy Award nominations, including best picture. Barry Nelson, Van Heflin, George Kennedy, Burt Lancaster, Dean Martin, Jean Seberg, Jacqueline Bisset, Maureen Stapleton and Lloyd Nolan rounded out the rest of the cast.
The 2011 drama "The Help" was shot in the state where it's set: Mississippi. Octavia Spencer won an Oscar for her performance in the film, which earned three more Academy Award nominations, including best picture, best lead actress for Viola Davis and best supporting actress for Jessica Chastain. Emma Stone and Bryce Dallas Howard also starred.
Though some scenes were shot in Los Angeles, principal photography for the 2014 David Fincher-directed thriller "Gone Girl" took place in Missouri, where the film is set. Rosamund Pike earned an Oscar nomination for her performance as the titular girl opposite Ben Affleck.
Many of the rafting scenes in the 1994 action-thriller "The River Wild" were reportedly shot on the Kootenai River in Montana. Meryl Streep and Kevin Bacon both earned Golden Globe nominations for their work in the film.
The 1995 comedy "To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar" was shot in several cities in Nebraska, including Loma, Lincoln and Omaha. Patrick Swayze and John Leguizamo both earned Golden Globe nominations for their work in the film, in which Wesley Snipes also starred.
Principal photography for 2009's "The Hangover" — in which Zach Galifianakis, Bradley Cooper and Ed Helms starred — took place in Nevada, predominantly at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, where the film is set. The movie won fans around the globe and even scored a Golden Globe nomination for best musical or comedy.
The 1995 action-adventure film "Jumanji," in which Robin Williams starred, was shot primarily in Keene, New Hampshire, which doubled for the fictional town of Brantford, New Hampshire, where the beloved family flick is set.
Though director Christopher Nolan shot scenes for 2012's "The Dark Knight Rises" — the third installment in his Batman trilogy — in several cities across the globe, a handful of super-important sequences were filmed in Newark, New Jersey.
Director Joss Whedon shot the bulk of the 2012 ensemble action-flick "The Avengers" in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlett Johansson, Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth and Jeremy Renner starred.
Like California, New York state is a hub for film sets. One of our favorite movies shot within the Empire State is the 1961 rom-com "Breakfast at Tiffany's," which is named for the Tiffany & Co. jewelry store on New York City's Fifth Avenue — though many of the film's interior scenes were shot in Hollywood. The movie won two Oscars back in the day and earned another three Academy Award nominations, including best lead actress for Audrey Hepburn.
The 1987 love story "Dirty Dancing," in which Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey starred, is set at the fictional Kellerman's resort in New York's Catskill Mountains. But the film was actually shot in two different states: Many of the most iconic exterior scenes were filmed at North Carolina's Lake Lure, though additional scenes were also shot at Virginia's Mountain Lake.
Only a handful of films have been shot in North Dakota over the years. The most famous, of course, is the 1996 Coen Brothers film "Fargo," which wasn't actually shot in the titular North Dakota city but rather in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area in Minnesota, as well as in parts of eastern North Dakota. The black comedy won two Oscars — best original screenplay and best lead actress for Frances McDormand — and earned five more Academy Award nominations, including best picture, best director and best supporting actor for William H. Macy.
The Ohio State Reformatory in Mansfield, Ohio, doubled as the fictional Maine-set Shawshank State Penitentiary in the 1994 Frank Darabont-directed film "The Shawshank Redemption," which is based on the Stephen King novella "Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption." The drama earned seven Oscar nominations, including best picture, best adapted screenplay and best lead actor for Morgan Freeman. Tim Robbins also starred.
The 1940 big-screen adaptation of the 1939 John Steinbeck novel "The Grapes of Wrath" was shot partially in Oklahoma. The drama won two Oscars — best director and best supporting actress for Jane Darwell — and earned five more Academy Award nominations, including best picture and best lead actor for Henry Fonda.
Though most of the cave scenes were shot on sound stages in California, the bulk of the beloved 1985 adventure flick "The Goonies" was shot in Oregon. (One of the film's sets, the old Clatsop County Jail, has since been converted into the Oregon Film Museum.) Anne Ramsey, Kerri Green, Ke Huy Quan, Josh Brolin, Sean Astin, Martha Plimpton, Corey Feldman and Jeff Cohen comprised the ensemble cast.
Sylvester Stallone's 1976 sports-drama "Rocky" was shot in the city where it's set: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The film won three Oscars, including best picture and best director, and scored another seven Academy Award nominations, including best original screenplay and best lead actor for Sly.
Director Wes Anderson shot the bulk of his 2012 coming-of-age comedy "Moonrise Kingdom" in Rhode Island. (The film is set on the fictional island of New Penzance in New England.) He scored an Oscar nomination for writing the screenplay.
Director Nick Cassavetes shot the bulk of the 2004 love story "The Notebook," which is based on the Nicholas Sparks novel of the same name, in South Carolina. Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams starred.
Kevin Costner shot the bulk of the 1990 Western "Dances with Wolves" — in which he also starred — in South Dakota. The drama won seven Oscars — including best picture, best director and best adapted screenplay — and earned another five nominations, including best lead actor.
Tennessee State Prison doubled as the fictional Louisiana jail Cold Mountain Penitentiary in the Frank Darabont-directed 1999 big-screen adaptation of Stephen King's 1996 novel "The Green Mile." The drama, in which Tom Hanks starred, earned four Oscar nominations, including best picture and best supporting actor for Michael Clarke Duncan.
Director Paul Thomas Anderson shot the bulk of the 2007 drama "There Will Be Blood" in Marfa, Texas. Daniel Day-Lewis took home an Oscar for his work in the film, which also won an Academy Award for best cinematography and earned six more nominations, including best picture, best director and best adapted screenplay.
The 1984 dance film "Footloose," in which Kevin Bacon starred, was shot primarily in Utah. Two original songs from the iconic musical-drama scored Oscar nominations: "Footloose" and "Let's Hear It for the Boy."
Director Tim Burton reportedly shot the exterior scenes in the 1988 horror-comedy "Beetlejuice" in Vermont. The movie, which won an Oscar for best makeup, is one of only a few projects to have been filmed in the Green Mountain State. Alec Baldwin, Michael Keaton, Winona Ryder and Geena Davis starred.
Director Steven Spielberg shot the bulk of the 2012 biopic "Lincoln" in Virginia. (The Virginia State Capitol even doubled as both the White House and the Capitol Building.) Daniel Day-Lewis took home an Oscar for his performance as the titular American president in the drama, which also won an Academy Award for best production design and earned 10 more nominations, including best picture, best director, best supporting actor for Tommy Lee Jones and best supporting actress for Sally Field.
Director Catherine Hardwicke shot the 2008 vampire drama "Twilight," in which Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson starred, in Oregon and Washington state, where the film is set. While the movie may not have won many awards, it's beloved by a legion of diehard fans around the globe and launched one of the most successful film franchises in cinema history.
The bulk of the 1991 thriller "The Silence of the Lambs" may have been shot in Pennsylvania, but some scenes were also filmed in West Virginia. The drama won five Oscars — best picture, best director, best adapted screenplay, best lead actress for Jodie Foster and best lead actor for Anthony Hopkins — and scored two more Academy Award nominations.
Though director Paul Feig shot the bulk of 2011's "Bridesmaids" in California, several scenes were also filmed in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where most of the film is set. The beloved comedy scored two Oscar nominations: best original screenplay and best supporting actress for Melissa McCarthy. Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Rose Byrne and Ellie Kemper also starred.
The badlands of Hell's Half Acre in Natrona County, Wyoming, served as the "bug planet" in the cult 1997 sci-fi flick "Starship Troopers," which actually scored an Oscar nomination for best visual effects. Casper Van Dien starred.