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Author Topic: Unforgiven Filming Locations?  (Read 20479 times)

« on: January 24, 2006, 10:36:12 PM »

This year I am going to Alberta for a few days, while there I am planning on seeing both filming locations to Open Range and Unforgiven. As for Unforgiven, these are the only areas I have found in Alberta,

Brooks, Calgary, Drumheller. High River and Longview. I know the train sequence was shot in California, but other then that am I missing any spots? I'm sure there are some of you that have been to the various filming locations, can you tell me in detail the exact spots and if their viewable, meaning are they ranch land that you cannot enter and are their any sites to see, thanks, please give as much detail as possible.
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« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2006, 05:01:40 PM »

  Relax man, no one is obligated to respond to you.  Give it a few days, as you did post this pretty recently.

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« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2006, 06:29:51 PM »

Orion, I saw your question and searched both this site and my files to see if I had any more details to offer you; I couldn't find much. I think there were more posts on the old Board about the Canadian locations, but it looks like I didn't save them when the board changed formats a few years ago.

I can only offer this, which you probably already know and which won't help you in your quest to find specific touristic information:

Posted on 05-24-99 at 07:59 AM  by KC

The film was financed by Warner Bros. and shot on location in Longview, Drumheller, Brooks and High River, Alberta, Canada, in the fall of 1991; the train scene was shot in Sonora, California, where there's a historic railroad. The town of Big Whiskey and the other buildings (Munny's, Ned's and Little Bill's houses) were built on the site and demolished afterwards. All the buildings in Big Whiskey were "practical," i.e. you could go inside them—no false fronts. Eastwood didn't allow motor vehicles in the town, and all cast and crew members had to ride in or come in on horse-drawn vehicles. Much of this information is to be found in Richard Schickel's 1996 "authorized" Eastwood biography, Clint Eastwood.

And a quote from the "Production information" handout in the Warner Bros. presskit for Unforgiven that I posted in that same thread:

Filmed entirely on location in Alberta, Canada, and Sonora, California, "Unforgiven" brings an unsentimental, realistic view of the American West to the screen. The film, written by DAVID WEBB PEOPLES, encompasses an elemental view of life, revealed by characters whose destiny is determined by events out of their control. It is a spare, revisionist look at the making of heroes and legends.

    About the Production...

    The filming of "Unforgiven" required construction of a town which would realistically reflect the 1880s. All indications of modern life had to be absent, not just on the immediate premises, but for an uninterrupted 360-degree vista.

    Producer, director and star Clint Eastwood insisted that the locations be an extension of the story. Familiar with the area surrounding Calgary, Alberta, Canada, from previous visits, he knew that the rugged, sparsely settled terrain of the area closely resembled the American West of the late 19th century.

    Working in cooperation with Bill Marsden, the film commissioner for the province of Alberta, Eastwood personally chose the site for the town of Big Whiskey, as well as the placement of Bill Munny's and Ned Logan's farms and Bill Daggett's lakeside house.

    Once the sites were selected, two-time Academy Award-winning production designer HENRY BUMSTEAD ("To Kill A Mockingbird" and "The Sting") began designing and overseeing the construction of the various farms and the town of Big Whiskey. Working closely with executive producer DAVID VALDES, he spared no detail and, remarkably, filming began approximately two months later.

    During the same pre-production phase, Western technical consultant, director, and dean of stunt coordinators BUDDY VAN HORN insured that all the actors could ride, that all stunts were properly choreographed, and that real cowboys were used as extras and background whenever possible. Van Horn's 30-year experience in these areas was Eastwood's guarantee of accuracy.

    Out of roughly 11 weeks of filming, nine weeks took place in Alberta with a predominantly Canadian crew. Specific locations included Brooks, home of the Munny hog farm; Drumheller, site of the Logan farm; and Longview, where Little Bill Daggett's house and the town of Big Whiskey were built. The remaining two weeks of work were filmed in Sonora, California, primarily to take advantage of a 19th century narrow-gauge train which still operates in the area.

I do know that all evidence of the filming was removed when the production was completed, so there's nothing to see in that regard.

Here is one more tidbit:

(posted 04-02-2001 07:35 AM  by KC)

Has anyone ever been to Longview, Alberta, one of the places where Unforgiven was filmed? If you go, here's where you should eat. (I found this in the Calgary Herald, April 1, 2000.)

Memories Inn Restaurant may be out in what some might call the Boonies—Longview, Alberta—but famous faces aren’t all that rare when a movie is being shot.

    When they’re not making a movie, they get to hang out with Rudy Vallee, the live wire who runs the place.

    Vallee is what your grandfather would have called “a card,” a slightly eccentric fellow full of tall tales, amusing anecdotes, corny jokes and one-liners.

    He had a good time with the cast and crew of the 1992 film Unforgiven, though he’s still not sure what Clint Eastwood’s then-girlfriend Frances Fisher was doing with the testing kit she applied to her hunky mate’s meals. The food must have checked out OK, because the pair and their entourage—which included Morgan Freeman, Gene Hackman and Richard Harris—kept coming back.

    After the movie left town, the red vinyl chair Eastwood always sat in got the hang-’em-high treatment, suspended from the ceiling in one corner of the restaurant. It’s kind of a makeshift memorial for devoted fans who make the pilgrimage to Longview.

I've never been to any of these places, though I'd like to go someday. If you do get there, please report back to us.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2006, 04:31:03 PM by KC » Logged

« Reply #3 on: January 25, 2006, 06:55:05 PM »

Thank you for the information and your reply KC, its appreciated, look for my detailed post in the fall...
« Last Edit: January 28, 2006, 07:48:59 PM by Orion » Logged
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« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2006, 01:00:16 PM »

Hi Orion, have you got back from Alberta yet? I used to live near Longview,(Olds) but I never stopped in at Memories, wish I had, I'll be going there next time I'm down for sure! The scenery is beautiful around there,if anybody is wondering! The Rocky Mountains are beautiful! Alot of movies get filmed near there.

Every Day is a Good Day!! -CL
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