Unsung Hero (2024): All Filming Locations Explored

‘Unsung Hero’ chronicles the faithful journey of the Smallbone as they immigrate from Australia to the US, hoping for a better life. David, his pregnant wife, Helen, and their six children share in the ups and downs of new beginnings in Nashville, Tennessee. While David and Helen had put aside their passion for music to provide for their family, the musical ability of their children stuns everyone, and Rebecca’s singing voice is called a miracle.

Against all odds, the Smallbones enter the local music scene to a cheering crowd, singing their own jubilant tunes. Directed by Richard L. Ramsey and Joel Smallbone, the musical drama film narrates a touching true story of family, passion, and faith based on the Smallbone family. Transporting us back to 1990s Nashville, Tennessee, the movie inspires questions regarding the real-world shooting sites utilized to recreate its settings.

Where Was Unsung Hero Filmed?

Filming for ‘Unsung Hero’ took place primarily in Louisville and Shelbyville, Kentucky, with a few shots of Nashville, Tennessee, added in. Principal photography was carried out over six weeks between October and November of 2022. The cast and crew seemingly had very positive experiences while crafting the story for the silver screen. Johnny Derango, the director of photography, took to social media and shared, “Over the years, I’ve made quite a few films that I’m truly proud of. This one though…it’s different. This one…it’s special. This one…changed my life.”

“Overcome with emotion when I think of all this project meant to me,” wrote Actress Kirrilee Berger, who enacts Rebecca, “When I got on a plane 6 weeks ago, I had no clue how many lifelong dreams would come true in such a short time. So deeply grateful for the new family I gained from this experience.” The film crew utilized a number of carefully curated sites in and around Louisville to create the nostalgic environments seen in the film.

Louisville, Kentucky

Filming for ‘Unsung Hero’ primarily took place in Louisville, sites around which stood in for 1990s Nashville. Steeped in Southern historical charm, the city became the ideal location to take us back in time. To achieve this, filming took place in locations such as the ones along the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, a renowned route that winds through the rolling hills and scenic countryside of central Kentucky. The team shot with these locales in the backdrop, evoking the sense of Southern nostalgia that fits in their targeted setting.

The cast and crew also set up shop at Bellewood, Kevin Granger’s estate, 1116 Bellewood Road. The estate can be seen in the film as the Smallbone family offers their cleaning services to the owners. Joel Smallbone vividly remembers all the work he and his siblings did, small jobs like the ones shown in the movie. Yet he and the family fondly recall all the time spent laboring together, as it had contributed to forging a close bond among them.

The Kevin Granger’s estate is a colonial-era property that is sprawled over 10 acres. The pearly white mansion at its center boasts a classical design, with its interiors handpicked by the Louisville restaurateur. It is surrounded by verdant landscapes with a stately garden and an antiquated fountain at the entrance. Louisville’s historic neighborhoods, such as Old Louisville and the Highlands, feature beautifully preserved Victorian homes like the estate, alongside charming local businesses. These neighborhoods are known to provide filmmakers with authentic settings for period dramas.

Shelbyville, Kentucky

A charming small town in the heart of Kentucky’s Bluegrass Region, Shelbyville became an important filming location for ‘Unsung Hero.’ Not as large as its neighbor Louisville, Shelbyville offered a quaint and picturesque backdrop depicting the home and community of the Smallbone family in the film. Surrounded by picturesque landscapes with lush green pastures, horse farms, and meandering country roads, it adds to Kentucky’s reputation as the Horse Capital of the World.

Nashville, Tennessee

The state capital, Nashville, is the location where the Smallbone family first arrived while migrating from Australia; thus, it became a mandatory shooting location for several scenes. Nashville’s cityscapes can be glimpsed in establishing shots as we are introduced to the settings. For musical dramas, it is an appropriate backdrop as its music scene is legendary, with a rich history that spans genres from country and rock to blues and gospel.

From Lower Broadway to the historic Ryman Auditorium, filmmakers can capture the energy and excitement of music performances, showcasing the city’s status as a mecca for musicians and music lovers alike. The city’s iconic musical history is captured in the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum situated at 222 Rep. John Lewis Way South.

Read More: Best Christian Movies on Netflix