Back in the day when television screens were grainy and one had to wait for the weekend to be able to watch a movie, Elliot Silverstein’s ‘The Car’ gained a cult following of its own. With its release, the whole idea of malevolent, evil cars became an actual horror trope, and in some ways, later also lead to the creation of Stephen King‘s ‘Christine.’ While many have forgotten the film and would even find its one-dimensional plot a bit too silly, the ones who grew up watching it will be able to appreciate its thrilling atmosphere.
In its opening scenes itself, the film gives you some schlocky terrors with its graphic depiction of two cyclists getting run down by a strange black car. With the series of hit-and-run murders that follow, you can’t help but wonder where the filming of its gritty, desert-like setup took place. So if you wish to know all about its filming locations, read on further.
The Car Filming Locations
Often labeled as an unintended parody of Steven Spielberg’s ‘Jaws’, ‘The Car’ is literally about a car that goes around killing people. The evil car that one can spot in the movie is a highly customized version of 1971 Lincoln Continental Mark III which was designed by George Barris. Even the Batmobile used in the Batman TV series of the 60s was designed by him. In a span of six weeks, four such cars were built for the filming of the movie, out of which, three were used as stunt mules. All three stunt mules were destroyed during the filming. As its official copyright entry suggests, the film was shot using a 35mm Panavision camera. When it comes to its filming locations, the movie was shot primarily in the Western US state of Utah.
The star of the 1977 movie – "The Car."
The evil, black car in the film was a highly customized 1971 Lincoln Continental Mark III designed by famed Hollywood car customizer George Barris. 😎 pic.twitter.com/ZE01ELJbv0
— Bobby Field (@Bobby_Field) November 19, 2019
Anyone remember the 1977 movie, THE CAR w/James Brolin?
Check out this addition to my haunted toy box: George Barris “The Car” 1/18 Scale Die Cast Replica that I got from the folks at @MonstersMotion — it looks EXACTLY like The Car—right down to hellish red of the windows 😈 pic.twitter.com/St6oDQIA0c
— Jeremy Wagner (@JeremyXWagner) June 19, 2019
Utah, United States
‘The Car’ walks you through several renowned locations of Utah including Snow Canyon, St. George, Dixie Downs Track, Hurricane, LaVerkin Bridge, Springdale, Zion National Park (Zion Tunnel), as well as Kanab, Glen Canyon, and Red Rock Canyon State Park. On August 16, 1976, it was reported that ‘The Car’ began its filming on July 28, 1976 in Kanab. Soon after this, on September 20, 1976, it was reported that the film’s location had been moved to Universal Studios on September 8, 1976, after being filmed in St. George and Kanab. Out of all the filming locations mentioned above, many would be quite familiar with Zion National Park as that’s the location where the filming of Academy Award Winner ‘Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid‘ also took place.
A Youtube user also posted a video that covers all the major filming locations of the movie at the Zion National Park. In the opening scene of the video itself, you can spot the Zion tunnel which hasn’t changed much over the years. Check it out below:
Even after being thrashed by critics, the film later gained some popularity and was even featured on ‘Simpsons‘ Treehouse of Horror episode. Check it out below:
Read More on Filming Locations: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid