Saturday, April 14, 2007

Bronson Canyon AKA The Batcave (Part 1)

(GPS: N34 07.271 W118 18.882)

Sometime back I visited Bronson Canyon in Los Angeles. It is actually in Griffith Park near the Hollywood sign. By itself, it really isn't that impressive. The area was used to get rocks for paving the streets of Hollywood and the San Pedro Breakwater. One just parks, takes a short elevated walk to a closed off area for vehicles, then goes around a corner, and you reach the area where it culdesacks. The reason the area is significant is because the area has been filmed so many times in all sorts of different movies. It is one of the most filmed places on the planet. It is most popular for this old tv series:
That is the batmobile popping out of the batcave. The old 1960's Batman tv series used the part of the area in most of the episodes when it showed them coming out of the batcave. Here it is today:
It is the same area, but looks like it has been cleared out a bit, or what you see in the Batman picture is a lot of prop bushes. Either way you can see that it is not a cave, but really a tunnel. I went through the tunnel and ended up on the other side. There are actually a few other outlets nearby the main end of the tunnel. Look at the climatic moment in the following picture from The Searchers.

The stunt doubles for John Wayne and Natalie Wood have just run down the mountain on the other side and ended up here. Funny, most of the movie took place in the Monument Valley, but here is the most important scene taking place in lowly Bronson Canyon's caves. The angle may not be right, but here is the area:
In the alternative ending of the movie, Army of Darkness, the exact same area is used. If you were to move out of the tunnel and look back this is what you would see:
In the Army of Darkness movie's alternative ending, you see Ash's (Bruce Campbell) car being taken into the cave from this angle. In my next entry I will show more from this area and its relation to movies and tv.