Plagued by production problems, a relatively unknown young child actor and a famously petulant Joe Pesci to contend with, the original ‘Home Alone’ went on to become one of the most iconic movies of the 1990s, defying expectations at the box office and becoming a staple of holiday television even today, three decades later. Everything about the film, including the hilarious performance of villainous duo Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern, the charming Macaulay Culkin, and the memorable soundtrack by the legendary John Williams is iconic. It is a testament to the film’s timeless appeal that ‘Home Alone’ held the record for the highest grossing live action comedy film of all time for over two decades until it was finally dethroned by ‘The Hangover Part II’ in 2011.
The story line of ‘Home Alone’ follows the mischievously resourceful little boy Kevin McCallister, who has a proclivity for creating trouble, much to the chagrin of his harried mother and absent-minded father. Kevin’s entire extended family is taking a vacation to Paris, France. However, trouble is afoot in the neighborhood as a couple of robbers start casing the houses, with their eye on the McCallister house next. Little do they know that Kevin is no ordinary kid, and they are about to walk into a whole new world of pain inside Kevin’s heavily booby-trapped home in some truly uproarious sequences.
If you were wondering where was ‘Home Alone’ filmed, here’s everything we know.
Where Was Home Alone Filmed?
The entirety of the story line of ‘Home Alone’ takes place in and around the McCallister family house and neighborhood in a suburb in Chicago. While the vast majority of the scenes take place in the McCallister house itself, certain other scenes also take place in numerous other locations including a church, a skating park, and a grocery store.
The filming for ‘Home Alone’ took place both on location and on set in a number of venues across the state of Illinois, including Chicago, Winnetka, Highland Park, and Oak Park. Principal photography began in February of 1990 but was wracked with production issues after distributor Warner took issue with the film’s ballooning budget. However, 21st Century Fox stepped in with principal photography concluding in May 1990.
The primary filming location for ‘Home Alone’ is located over at 671 Lincoln Avenue in the charming village of Winnetka in Cook County, north of Chicago. This is the location of the multi storied McCallister house, which serves at the playground for Kevin’s creative home defense traps. The Murphy house, where the mouthy young Mitch Murphy lives is also located nearby at 656 Lincoln Avenue.
The treehouse where Kevin escapes to during the film’s climax was constructed especially for the movie. However, many of the interior shots of the house, particularly the basement and the attic were recreated on set in the New Trier High School. Other filming locations in Winnetka include a Panera Bread Company establishment at 940 Greenbay Road, as well as the Hubbard Woods Metro Station in Gage Street.
Check out this picture of the iconic ‘Home Alone’ house:
The Home Alone House in Winnetka now has a fence around it. pic.twitter.com/RpK7MjXhNJ
— Chicago History ™️ (@Chicago_History) October 25, 2015
Winnetka is one of the wealthiest regions in the entire United States in terms of household income, and with its placid suburban character is the ideal backdrop for a movie like ‘Home Alone’. The region has also served as a filming location for several other high profile Hollywood movies including ‘Ferris Bueller’s Day Off’, ‘Ocean’s Twelve’, ‘Meet the Parents’, and ‘Sixteen Candles’.
Various Locations Across Illinois
Filming for certain scenes in ‘Home Alone’ also took place on location across various venues in Illinois. For instance, the exterior of the church where Kevin has a heart to heart talk with the old man Marley was filmed at the Trinity United Methodist Church on West Lake Avenue, Wilmette, while the interior scenes of the church were shot at the Grace Episcopal Church in Lake Street, Oak Park.
Check out these pictures posted by a fan on Twitter:
Yesterday we passed a few Home Alone filming locations pic.twitter.com/72yXgWBnfl
— Mike Piwko (@MikePiwko) September 14, 2019
The airport sequence where Kevin’s family hurries to make their plane and the subsequent scenes at Paris Airport were all filmed at the O’Hare International Airport in Chicago.
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