Clipped: Unveiling Filming Locations of the Hulu Show

‘Clipped’ follows the Los Angeles Clippers basketball team and their management as they attempt to win a championship while hindered by the increasingly troubling interventions of owner Donald Sterling. Coach Doc Rivers is brought in to help the team shine but soon realizes the unavoidable problem at its center, Donald Sterling. Sterling antagonizes the players and unduly pressurizes the coach while engaged in scandalous activities with his assistant Stiviano, revealing his bigoted nature.

The FX show created by Gina Welch is based on ESPN’s hit 30 for 30 podcast ‘The Sterling Affairs’ by Ramona Shelburne and chronicles the true story of Donald Sterling’s downfall. In addition to being a thrilling sports drama, the show presents a complex narrative about wealth, fame, privilege, and race. It also seems to perfectly recreate the environment and circumstances surrounding the scandal, prompting questions about the filming sites employed by the mini-series.

Where is Clipped Filmed?

Filming for ‘Clipped’ takes place in Greater Los Angeles, California. Shooting was carried out on location as well as in a studio across Los Angeles and Santa Clarita. Tentatively titled ‘The Sterling Affairs,’ the show began principal photography in late 2022 and wrapped up the first six episodes in a few months by early 2023. FX greenlit the series in April 2022, and the initial casting call for the show projected a shooting date of June 06, 2022, which was presumably delayed as another casting call was made in January 2023.

The team behind the show seems to have been in collaborative spirits behind the scenes and lauded the crew with praise. “I’ve never had more fun on a gig. Was just a blast from start to finish,” wrote actor Kelly AuCoin in the caption of a picture he uploaded on Instagram. “This was one of the most joyful and collaborative experiences I’ve ever been a part of, and that tone was set by our captain, Gina. My friend, it was a blast, and I‘d work with you again whenever you’d have me.”

Greater Los Angeles, California

The Greater Los Angeles area makes up the highest concentration of movie studios and filming lots in the world and encapsulates all the locations associated with classic Hollywood. It was also the backdrop for much of the real-life events on which the show is based. The basketball court scenes of the show are filmed at the Staples Center on 1111 South Figueroa Street. Currently called Arena and located in downtown Los Angeles, the center is known for hosting prominent sports tournaments and entertainment events. However, the arena holds special relevance to ‘Clipped’ as the home of the Los Angeles Clippers.

Image Credit: FX

While shooting took place on location across sites and neighborhoods in Los Angeles, the production team set up shop in a studio north of the city. Traveling to Santa Clarita, ‘Clipped’ created many of its backdrops using sets and spaces in Santa Clarita Studios, 25135 Anza Drive. Often abbreviated as SC-Studios, the facility was established in the 1980s and has a rich history of cinema attached to it. Since its inception, the studio has grown to enormous proportions with 35 sound stages of various sizes, a large Downtown LA backlot, and fully furnished production office spaces. Some noteworthy productions housed in the studio include ‘LA’s Finest,’ ‘Dollface,’ ‘Mighty Ducks: Game Changers,’ ‘Goliath,’ and ‘Promised Land.’

One of the key attractions of SC-Studios is its picturesque surroundings, which offer a variety of filming locations within close proximity to the studio lot. The Santa Clarita Valley boasts a diverse range of landscapes, including rolling hills, rugged canyons, and scenic vistas, making it an ideal backdrop for a wide range of film and television projects. Interestingly, roughly half of all permitted location shooting in Greater Los Angeles occurs in the Santa Clarita Valley owing to 2009 reforms enacted for film incentives, making the region boast the lowest permit fees in southern California.

While filming, Gina Welch was drawn to Coleman’s essaying of V. Stiviano and compared the character to an Edith Wharton heroine as being materialistic, vain, and ambitious. However, she also saw compassion in Coleman’s depiction of the woman, contrasting her calculating and manipulative nature with naivety and good-heartedness. This is in line with the real-life Stiviano, having allegedly profited from Sterling’s attention but also later adopted two young boys. “(Coleman) wanted to make sure that people still felt empathy for the character,” said Welch in an interview.

Read More: Clipped (2024): The True Story Behind the Hulu Show, Explained