Sunset Boulevard is a classic black comedy film from 1950. It starred Gloria Swanson as Norma Desmond, a past-her-prime actress looking for a big comeback, and William Holden as Joe Gillis, a scriptwriter who is hired by Norma.
In addition to being produced by Paramount Pictures, Sunset Boulevard actually filmed some scenes on the lot as well. Since the movie’s script called for scenes to take place on a movie lot, it made sense to use their own facilities.
The Bronson Gate
As Norma Desmond arrives to the studio, we see her driver pull up to the Bronson Gate. The Paramount lot is larger now, and they own the property up to Melrose Avenue, but at the time, the Bronson Gate was one of the main entrances.
Norma’s car pulls up to Soundstage 18 where she is greeted by director Cecil B. DeMille. She then goes inside to visit the set of the movie he is filming.
Just across from Stage 18 is a row of offices used by writers on the lot. In the movie, Joe had an office located in this row. These offices are actually attached to soundstages 8 and 9.
Joe Gillis’ Apartment
At the start of the film, we see Joe departing his apartment. The building used is the Alto Nido apartments in Hollywood. The building has not really been changed since the movie was filmed, and looks remarkably the same as it did in 1950.
Gloria Swanson’s Mansion
The mansion used as Gloria Swanson’s home was located on Wilshire Boulevard. The house was sadly torn down in 1957 to allow construction for an office building.
Schwab’s Drug Store
Schwab’s Pharmacy was an iconic Hollywood location, well known for it’s ice dream bar and as a place to spot celebrities.
Sadly, the pharmacy closed down in and the building was demolished in . Check out this great article for a look back at the pharmacy.Follow me: