Andrew Niccol’s directorial debut ‘Gattaca’ is a science-fiction drama film revolving around a “genetically inferior” man named Vincent Freeman struggling to realize his lifelong dream of traveling into space due to the prevalent genetic discrimination in the future society. His desperation and determination for his goal, make him assume the identity of a superior man so as to go to space. The 1997 movie stars some big names, including Ethan Hawke, Uma Thurman, Jude Law, Xander Berkeley, and Gore Vidal, giving brilliant performances in a futuristic setting.
The dystopian science fiction movie consists of some impressive and futuristic backdrops that are enough to make the audience wonder about the locations used to match the theme and setting of ‘Gattaca’. Well, you can stop wondering because we are here to provide you with all the facts you need about the filming sites used in this movie!
Gattaca Filming Locations
One major location was utilized to film the entirety of the movie — California. The filming was carried out in different regions of California in order to make use of distinct locations of the city and perfectly capture the dynamics of the backdrops that were to be used for the movie, set in the future. On top of the filming locations, the unique use of colors also played a prominent role in giving the movie a more advanced and modern outlook.
The filming of ‘Gattaca’ was carried out from April 22, 1996, to July 16 of the same year. To support the futuristic themes in the science fiction film, futuristic cars based on the 60s car models such as Studebaker Avanti, Citroen DS19, and Rover P6 were used. Over the years, California has been used as the filming site for several movies like ‘Free Guy‘ and ‘Ghostbusters’. Let us fill you in with the details of all the specific locations where this movie was shot!
San Rafael, California
Situated in Northern California, San Rafael was one of the many sites that were used for the filming of ‘Gattaca’. The famous Marin County Civic Center located at 3501 Civic Center Drive, between North San Pedro Road and Avenue of the Flags, was used as the headquarters of Gattaca, a space exploration agency, where many exterior and interior shots were filmed.
Los Angeles County, California
Pomona, a city in Los Angeles County, California, was used to shoot various sequences involving the exterior of Vincent’s apartment, specifically at the CLA Building on the campus of California State Polytechnic University, situated at 3801 West Temple Avenue.
Inglewood is another city in this county, where several scenes were filmed. Several shots for the movie’s DNA testing center were filmed around The Forum located at 3900 West Manchester Boulevard.
Several scenes in ‘Gattaca’ used Barstow, a city in San Bernardino County in California, as their backdrop in order to add more dynamics to certain sequences in the film. Various classics were shot in this particular location, such as ‘From Dusk Till Dawn’ and ‘Lost Highway.
Marin County, California
The production team also visited Marin County to film a few scenes. The panoramic landscapes of Marin County, located in Northern California, were used as cinematic backdrops for the filming of various scenes for the dystopian science-fiction movie. Movies like ‘Jurrasic World’ and ‘American Graffiti‘ also used this site for production.
Los Angeles, California
Out of all the filming locations used in California, Los Angeles was the city where a majority of the sequences were shot. The scene in which Irene reveals to Jerome her heart condition was filmed at Sepulveda Dam, located in Encino. Los Angeles City Hall situated at 200 North Spring Street, Downtown, is another location that was used to film certain scenes, including the twelve-fingered pianist concert.
The scene where Irene and Vincent are stopped at a police checkpoint in a tunnel and made to undergo a DNA test on their date was shot using the backdrop of the 2nd Street Tunnel that lies between Hill and Figueroa. The Fancy Hall that was shown in the movie during the date between Irene and Vincent that gets interrupted by a police raid was filmed at the Los Angeles Theater at 615 South Broadway in Downtown.
Apart from all these locations in Los Angeles, Otis College of Art and Design at 9045 Lincoln Boulevard is another site used to film parking lot scenes, including the one wherein Anton parks his car outside the police building after discovering that the killer has been caught.
Culver City, California
Several pre-school and middle school scenes portrayed in ‘Gattaca’ were filmed in Culver City High School located at 4401 Elanda Street. It was only apt for the crew to use an actual school to shoot the school sequences as it made the movie seem more realistic, even though it is set in the future.
Kramer Junction, California
The solar power plant where Irene takes Vincent to witness the sunrise together after their date was filmed in Kramer Junction, Solar Electric Generating Station at Pipeline Road, Boron. The contrasting colors of the setting sun and the solar station in the scene make for an extraordinary sequence.
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