Most Filmed Universities In The World

While most universities are just academic institutions, some have a secret life moonlighting as movie stars. It’s common to see university architecture, lecture halls or yards as filming locations for some of the most famous movies ever.

We wanted to find the most filmed universities in the world. So, hyped up on popcorn and pick n mix, we set about building a web crawler, and instructing it to explore the filming locations of over 5,000 movies on IMDb.

After we got the data, we sorted university filming locations by the movies and TV series shot on their campuses, coming up with a comprehensive list of the most filmed universities in the world.

We’ve discovered everything including stories about students stumbling upon Oscar-winning actors on their way to lectures, colleges who banned filming after fake snow damaged their campuses, and the university which hosts a weekly televised wrestling match. So sit back and press play on the most filmed universities in the world.

What are the most filmed universities in the world?

The most filmed universities in the world are:

 

University of Southern California (USC)

Movies and TV series filmed: 177

Is USC an academic institution or a famous Hollywood film set? Trick question! It’s both. USC’s redbrick and graceful arches, just 20 minutes from Hollywood itself, have appeared in as many as 69 films, 85 TV shows (including Gilmore Girls and the iconic Beverly Hills 90210) and 115 commercials1.

When it comes to USC. films are like a box of chocolates and you never know which one you’re gonna get. Yes, USC was indeed a film set for the famous 1994 film Forrest Gump, as well as The Graduate, Princess Diaries 2, and The Social Network.

USC are definitely raking in those Hollywood star fees for the privilege of using their campus, too2. It costs over $1,000 an hour to film on USC’s baseball stadium, and $750 an hour to film in the university’s Bovard auditorium, plus extra for USC security, site representatives and lifeguards if you’re filming in the pool. Let’s look at USC’s starring role in some of the most well-known films ever.

Legally Blonde (2001)

Elle Woods might have gone to Harvard, but Legally Blonde was filmed at USC. Blonde, bubbly and beautiful, Elle Woods – whose accomplishments include a 4.0 GPA and a place as first runner in up in the Miss Hawaiian Tropics competition – is dumped by her sleazy, Harvard-bound boyfriend Warner for not being ‘serious’ enough to be the wife of a future lawyer. So, she (and her chihuahua dog, Bruiser) get into Harvard Law School to win him back.

USC’s Bovard Administration Building serves as Elle’s ‘Harvard’ dormitory, where Elle’s new love interest, Emmett, drops her off, and she defends nerdy Law student David Kidney from some mean girls, by pretending she dated him. You can also see USC’s Bovard Auditorium and Trousdale Parkway in parts of the film.

Forrest Gump (1994)

Remember that scene in Forrest Gump where Forrest graduates from college, after his mother was told he’d never be able to attend a regular school? That was shot right in front of USC’s Bovard Administration Building. And let’s face it, we were all right there with Forrest’s mother as she sniffled into her flowery handkerchief, watching her son graduate from the ‘University of Alabama’.

Low in IQ, but high in emotional intelligence and love, Forrest grows up from a child in leg-braces who is constantly told he’s different by everyone except his mother, to a college football player, Vietnam soldier, professional ping pong player, owner of a shrimp company and, eventually, someone who runs the length of the country, always thinking back to his childhood love Jenny.

In fact, that famous scene outside Jenny’s dorm room, where Forrest interrupts Jenny’s make out session by punching her boyfriend in the face, takes place in front of Marks Hall3, on USC campus.

Matilda (1996)

USC was also the film location for the heart-wrenching film Matilda, about a girl who takes refuge in books and learning to escape from her dreadful family.

Mr Wormwood, Matilda’s dad is a swindler of second-hand cars which he fills with sawdust to cut costs, and Mrs Wormwood, Matilda’s mum, leaves Matilda home alone multiple times a week to play Bingo.

Both of them are obsessed with TV and hate books, so Matilda, at the tender age of four, takes herself off to the public library, which is…. you guessed it, is filmed in USC’s very own Doheny Memorial Library.4 Beautiful and cavernous, this library is almost unbelievable when you think about the gum you had to pick off the seats just to sit down at your local town library.

 

University of British Columbia

Movies and TV series filmed: 165

The University of British Columbia (UBC) is one of the most widely filmed universities in the world. When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, nearly six productions had to stop filming at UBC5, according to the university’s Manager of Film and Events, which gives you a sense of just how much UBC is involved in film production. Movies filmed at UBC include The Butterfly Effect (2004)6 about a boy abused in childhood, who finds out he has a propensity for time travel. The main character in the film, Evan, actually studies at UBC in the movie. He sits an exam in the Geography Building in Robson Square Campus at UBC, and gets a drink at the local student bar (which is still there) – the Blarney Stone Pub, on 216 Carrall street.

The university rakes in significant filming fees, which it shares with the UBC Theatre and Film department.

She’s the Man (2006)

In a nod to Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, this movie follows a girl who plays competitive soccer and poses as her brother to play in a boys’ team at a match, after her girls’ team gets cut. UBC’s Thunderbird Stadium7 becomes the Illyria Stadium in the film, where Viola (dressed as Sebastian) is put through her paces in the boys’ soccer team.

X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)

UBC’s Buchanan Tower8 makes an appearance in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, as the grey and grim looking Lagos tower, which flashes into Agent Zero’s eyes as the team assemble to attack.

University of Toronto

Movies and TV series filmed: 99

One of the stars of Hollywood North, the University of Toronto has been a filming location for movies including Cocktail (1998), starring a young Tom Cruise and Enemy (2014). The University of Toronto’s brutalist architecture is a favourite for futuristic and science fiction movies, such as Urban Legend (1998).

Mean Girls (2004)

Shut up. Instead of filming car commercials in Japan and insuring her hair for $10,000 it looks like Regina George, as well as Kady, Karen and the rest of the crew from Mean Girls have been hanging out in the University of Toronto9. Or, at least, the University of Toronto’s Convocation Hall was the filming location for Kady’s Mathletes competition at the end of the film.

The Incredible Hulk (2008)

When Bruce Banner tries to find a cure for… well, turning into the Incredible Hulk all the time, he goes to a place called Grayburn College in the film. This is actually the University of Toronto, just outside Convocation Hall. The University of Toronto’s King College Circus with its distinctive gothic tower was also used to for the Biological Sciences Building at the fictional Culver University in the film.

Resident Evil: Afterlife (2010)

Most famously, the University of Toronto’s Robarts Library played a massive prison that gets infected with a Zombie invasion during Resident Evil: Afterlife10. Its very brutalist look might not be the prettiest, but it certainly adds to the apocalyptic atmosphere.

Harvard University

Movies and TV Series Filmed: 46

Harvard University has a fascinating relationship with film, and actually banned filming on its campus since the 1970 filming of the movie Love Story15 caused significant damage to campus.

Despite this, Harvard still gets around five requests a week for movie or documentary filming, and about five calls per day to use the Harvard seal for commercial purposes, according to University spokesperson Joe Wrinn16. According to Wrinn, “the campus could turn into a soundstage given the interest”.

And let’s not forget the huge amount of movies that are set in Harvard, even if they can’t be filmed there, including Soul Man (1986) and Legally Blonde (2001).

Love Story (1970)

Love Story is one of the rare movies that actually got to be filmed at Harvard University. It follows the story of Oliver and Jennifer, two lovers from opposing backgrounds. A lot of the scenes were filmed at Harvard Yard and Harvard’s Tercentenary Theatre. There’s a lot of kissing in the rain, library scenes and wandering romantically around Harvard Yard, and later on, deathbed scenes. This is also the movie that coined the famous line: “Love means never having to say you’re sorry”. I’m not sure we all agree with that, after nearly a year cooped up in the house with our loved ones during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Paper Chase (1973)

The movies that did get to be filmed at Harvard really have a theme of forbidden love. The Paper Chase is a surprisingly prescient look at the pressure that top-tier schools and intense professors can have on your mental health. The library shots in this movie were filmed in Harvard’s Andover Library and Divinity School, and exterior shots of the Harvard Law School buildings in the film were directly filmed in front of Harvard Law School.

University of Pennsylvania

Movies and TV Series Filmed: 39

The University of Pennsylvania has been the backdrop of many famous films, including Transformers 2: Revenge of the fallen (2009) and a 1993 film about AIDS discrimination starring Tom Hanks19. This movie, called Philadelphia, follows the story of a gay lawyer who is fired for having AIDS, who then sues the law firm he used to work at. Scenes for Philadelphia were filmed at The University of Pennsylvania’s Anne & Jerome Fisher Fine Arts Library

If you want to film commercially on the University of Pennsylviania Campus, you’ll need to contact Ron Ozio at the Office of University Communications. We spoke to Ron Ozio ourselves, and he said that the university does not generally encourage filming on campus during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Transformers 2: Revenge of the fallen (2009)

Transformers 2 was the first big studio motion picture filmed on campus at the University of Pennsylvania20. By all accounts, the filming crew were made extremely welcome on-campus. The movie was filmed at the Psi Upsilon fraternity house, also known as ‘The Castle’. As the director camoflauged the university’s distincitve ‘Love’ sculpture during filming and moved to film at Princeton later that summer, there were rumours that the movie directors were swapping out the University of Pennyslvania for Princeton, as well as scripting Princeton’s name in the movie. However, the college named in Transformers 2 was neither Pennyslvania nor Princeton, as both universities did not allow their name to be used, especially as there was a scene involving marajuana brownies.

Full Sail University

Movies and TV series filmed: 38

Full Sail University isn’t just famous as a filming location: many of its film graduates go on to work on award-winning film projects, and snag OSCARs and EMMYs21

WWE NXT

Full Sail is famous as the location for the wrestling show WWE MXT, which is currently filmed weekly at Full Sail University22. Some truly unforgettable matches were captured at the university, including the NXT North American Title Match between Velveteen Dream (who can forget his glamorous, purple lightning leggings) and Roderick Strong, as well as the Women’s Championship Number One Contender Fatal Four-Way Match involving Bianca Belair, Candice LeRae, Io Shirai, and Mia Yi. Once, a match even burst out of the Full Sail Venue and into a backlot at the university.

University of Oxford

Movies and TV series filmed: 37

Apart from being one of the world’s most prestigious universities, Oxford is in high demand as a filming location for some of the most well-known movies and television series. From Sherlock Holmes to X-Men, and vintage films such as Accident (1967) and The Italian Job (1969), Oxford proves that it is as talented an actor as it is a dazzling centre of academic prestige.

Oxford is in especially high demand as a filming location because of its striking architecture, ranging from gothic spires to medieval walls, that you can see in many famous movies and TV series. Most recently, Oxford was a filming location for the series A Discovery of Witches23, where its backdrop of dreaming spires gave a sense of mystery and magic to the storyline about a history of science professor who realises she is descended from witches.

Oxford’s Bodleian Library was also painstakingly copied as a film-set in Cardiff’s Bad Wolf Studios, as many scenes in A Discovery of Witches take place in this library.

The Golden Compass (2007)

Oxford University was famously the film-set for The Golden Compass24, based on Philip Pullman’s bestselling trilogy His Dark Material (the first book of which is the Northern Lights).

Pullman himself attended Exeter College, Oxford, and the college itself was used as the location for the fictional Jordan College in the movie. Exeter College Gardens were used to film the scene where Lyra and Lord Astriel walk around the gardens.

Harry Potter

Oxford University is so famous as the filming location for the Harry Potter movies, that the institution and the series have become inextricably intertwined.

The Harry Potter Films: Philosopher’s Stone (2001), Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002), and Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005), were largely filmed at Christ Church College at the University of Oxford. Christ Church College’s Bodley Staircase is the staircase where Professor McGonagall first meets Harry, Ron and Hermione, and the famous gothic Divinity School, was used as Hogwarts’ hospital wing where Harry always seems to end up, recovering from multiple fights with Voldemort.

In fact, Christ Church’s Great Dining Hall (which is in the tudor style) was the inspiration for Hogwarts dining hall in the film, with its splendid feasts and self-clearing magical plates. The corridors of Christ Church were also used to film the scene where Hermione shows Harry the Quidditch trophy his father won, and tells him that Quidditch is “in his blood”.

Christ Church isn’t the only Oxford college that can play claim to Harry Potter fame though. The cloisters and courtyard of New College were used as a filming location for the Goblet of Fire movie, where Malfoy taunts Harry from a gigantic oak tree (also on the grounds of New College), and gets turned into a ferret by Mad-Eye Moody.

Oxford University’s Duke Humfrey’s Library was used by directors to film the scene where Harry walks through the Hogwarts library in his invisibility cloak, to steal a book from the restricted section.

Northwestern University

Movies and TV Series Filmed: 37

Northwestern University is leading US institution in engineering and science, but it also has a starring role in some of the most iconic movies.

Road to Perdition (2002)

The movie Road to Perdition, about a gangster called Mike son whose accidentally witnesses his father committing a murder, was partly filmed at Northwestern university.17 Running through the action-packed scenes, where Mike and Michael Jr (Mike’s son) go on the run, is the desperate desire for redemption, not just on earth, but in eternity.

With Honours (1994)

The movie With Honours, about a brilliant student at Harvard University who unwittingly makes friends with a homeless man who has stolen his thesis, is partly shot at Northwestern18 (remember, Harvard banned most filming on their campus in 1970!). The scene where Simon, the student, and his professor debate American politics was filmed in Northwestern Law School’s Lincoln Hall.

Donetsk National University

Movies and TV series filmed: 35

Donetsk National University in Ukraine has been the centre of many fiction films, documentaries and music videos over the years, including The Prisoner’s Dilemma (2012), and Twenty Years of Boredom.

Perhaps most memorable is Donetsk National University’s role as the filming location for several music videos by the band Errors in Geography, including Fat Duck Surprise (described as ‘a surreal music video about a duck and luck’)11 and The Seeker of Autumn, a surreal music video about a man who ‘scorched by summer, waits for autumn to come’12. Clearly, ‘surreal’ is a theme here.

Stanford University

Movies and TV series filmed: 29

Stanford isn’t just a famous, Ivy League university, it’s also the filming location for many fascinating films. A movie based on the notorious Stanford Prison Experiment (which of course also took place at Stanford) was filmed at Stanford in 201525. The Stanford Prison Experiment documents an experiment intended to investigate the psychological effects of power in the relationship between prisoners and prison guards. Led by psychology professor Philip Zimbardo, the student volunteers split into ‘guards’ and ‘prisoners’ to see what would happen. However, the experiment was stopped after just a few days, as some guards already started to inflict authoritarian control and even psychological torture.

Stanford was also the filming location for the movie A Teacher’s Obsession (2015)26 about the alarming, abusive relationship between a pupil and a manipulative teacher.

University College London

Movies and TV series filmed: 28

University College London (UCL) is the alumnus of Christian Nolan, director of academy winning awards like Inception (2010). So, it’s no surprise that he chooses to shoot many of his films here.

UCL has also been a filming location for movies including The Mummy Returns (2001), where the Front Quad served as the British Museum in the film. UCL’s Front Quad also transformed into Ancient Rome for the film Gladiator, so you can’t say it’s not versatile27.

The movie Batman Begins (2005) also uses UCL as a filming spot. UCL’s DMS Watson library was Gotham’s Print Room, and the outside of the Medawar building formed part of the police department headquarters. UCL’s National Institute for Medical Research also served as the filming location for Arkham Asylum.

UCL is clued up when it comes to charging for the privilege of filming on its premises. When the English pop group Take That filmed a music video on campus, UCL charged £3500 plus VAT. An additional £648 was charged for staff covering the shoot28.

Inception (2010)

Scenes from the famous movie Inception were captured using UCL’s Front Quad, Gustave Tuck Lecture Theatre and the Main Library. The film features Leonardo DiCaprio as a thief of information from people’s dreams. Filming for inception also took place in the Flaxman Gallery, with its ornate, pale stone and soaring statues. Apparently some students randomly stumbled on Leonardo DiCaprio on their way to lectures. Jealous.

Atonement (2007)

The movie Atonement, based on Ian McEwan’s hugely successful model of the same name, used UCL’s Physics Yard to shoot the casualty cleaning area of St Thomas’s hospital, where the character Briony works.

University of Adelaide

Movies and TV Series Filmed: 26

The University of Adelaide in Australia charges up to $2,000 per day of commercial filming, and if you want permission to film on-campus, you should contact Marketing and Recruitment at [email protected].13

Oranges and Sunshine (2010)

The University of Adelaide is particularly famous for its role as a filming location stirring film Oranges and Sunshine14, which is an unflinching look at the scandal of ‘home children’, who were poor children relocated to Australia from the UK. The home children were promised a better life, but they got hard labour, life in institutions and worse.

Filming for Oranges and Sunshine took place in the University of Adelaide’s Barr Smith Library, which is home to a beautiful reading room.

Fordham University

Movies and TV series filmed: 22

Some of the world’s most famous directors have used Fordham University as a backdrop to their movies, from horror movies to real-life dramas. You can see Fordham University in the unnerving film The Exorcist, where the basements in Fordham’s Keating Hall and Hughes hall were used as part of the set. Imagine literally attending lectures every day above the set for the world’s most terrifying horror movie.

Fordham University also makes an appearance in the Adjustment Bureau, starring Matt Damon. Fordham students were also used as extras in this movie.

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps (2010)

In “Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps” (the sequel to Wall street)32, which stars actors including Shia LeBeouf, Carey Mulligan and Josh Brolin, the directors filmed a scene on campus in Fordham’s Keating Auditorium. Some students were even used as extras, and you can see them in the lecture hall scene in Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps. this sequel to “Wall Street”, Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas) finds himself recently out of prison and trying to repair his relationship with his daughter. This movie has an all star cast of Douglas, Shia LaBeouf, Carey Mulligan and Josh Brolin. The movie only filmed one scene on campus in Keating’s auditorium. In this scene, Gekko is giving a lecture to students, many of whom were actually Fordham students that got to be extras.

A Beautiful Mind (2001)

Fordham also has a role in one of the most beautiful and stirring movies ever: A Beautiful Mind. Based on the true story of genius mathematician John Nash, who struggled with schizophrenic delusions all his life, A Beautiful Mind shows Nash being called for top secret work in the Pentagon. Again, Fordham’s Keating Hall (which probably deserves an Oscar for all its acting work) makes an appearance as the Pentagon.

University of Arizona

Movies and TV series filmed: 20

The University of Arizona also has a famous film history, including as the set for as Flashpoint (1982), a movie about two Texas border guards finding a jeep in the desert with a skeleton, and a box with $800,000 in it.

Revenge of the Nerds (1984)

The University of Arizona transformed itself into ‘Adams College’ for the comedy Revenge of the Nerds in 198430. The movie was filmed both at the University of Arizona and the area around it, and is about two freshmen who start college, only to be thrown out of their dorm by some arrogant football players whose own fraternity house has burned down in a fire. With nowhere to go, the ‘nerds’ take refuge with other misfits in the school gymnasium. They eventually form their own fraternity and become popular. Conchise Hall at the University of Arizona was used as the dorm the two young men are kicked out of, and the Bear Down Gymnasium was the gym where they had to take refuge. Other sites that appear are the Computer Center, the Arizona Stadium and the Memorial Fountain in front of Old Main. Interestingly, the filming of the movie almost didn’t happen at the University of Arizona, because the university was concerned that it would be a ‘raunchy’ movie and throw the institution into disrepute. However, they decided that the benefits to the local community – including increased jobs – outweighed the risks.

A Kiss Before Dying (1956)

This movie about a university student who murders the future mother of his child and her sister was also shot at the University of Arizona. Student Bud Corliss is dating Dorothy Kingship for her money alone, but when she becomes pregnant and her father disinherits her, he looks for a way to get rid of her. The film was partly shot that the University of Arizona’s Administration Building (now called the Robert Nugent building), and the scene where Gordon uses a phone booth to call the chief of police is captured at the University of Arizona’s Main Gate.

University of Maryland

Movies and TV series filmed: 20

The University of Maryland is both a well-respected university, and the set for quite a few unnerving slasher films, including the movie: The House of Sorority Row (1982)33 which follows seven sorority sisters unduly controlled by their house mother, Mrs Slater. When Mrs Slater refuses to let the girls hold a graduation party, they retaliate with a prank that goes disturbingly wrong. Filming to create the university campus in The House on Sorority Row took place at the University of Maryland, in 1981.

Smashed: Toxic Tales of Teens and Alcohol (2004)

Equally cheery is the documentary Smashed: Toxic Tales of Teens and Alcohol, which was filmed at the University of Maryland’s R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Centre. The scenes of alcohol abuse and drinking and driving depicted in the documentary were a day-to-day normality for those who supported teens at the Shock Trauma Centre. The producers of Smashed simply filmed the events that were happening while they were at the Shock Trauma centre, which is a mixture of bloody patients struggling in the grip of addiction, and the family and friends who love them.

Other movies filmed at the University of Maryland include National Treasure: Book of Secrets, which involves a character called Ben Gates (Nicholas Cage) clearing his ancestor’s name after he is accused of assassinating Abraham Lincoln back in the day. In the movie, the character Emily works at College Park in the University of Maryland, and the building you see is the real University of Maryland, although its interiors were filmed using a soundstage.

University of North Carolina

Movies and TV series filmed: 19

The University of North Carolina’s campus has appeared in many films over the years. The state university – which was the only one to award degrees to its students during the 18th Century – has been used to film movies including King Kong Lives (1986)34 and House of Cards (1993).The movie version of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing (2013)35, was also filmed partly at North Carolina.

If you want to film at the University of North Carolina (UNC), for example, for motion pictures, documentaries or video productions, you’ll need to make a request to the university. You’ll also have to submit a copy of the final script and the production’s storyline, as UNC may deny you the right to film on their campus if the subject includes racism, sexism, violence or alcohol use, for example. UNC does not usually allow you to film commercials or advertisements on campus.

The Roommate (2011)

The University of North Carolina was also used to film the spectacularly creepy movie The Roommate, which premiered in 2011. The Roommate involves a freshman called Sara in her first year of college in Los Angeles. Her new roommate Rebecca develops an attachment with her that darkens into obsession. The more obsessed Rebecca becomes with Sara, the more preoccupied she is with taking out anyone who comes between them…

University of Minnesota

Movies and TV series filmed: 19

A state university by day and a film-star by night (or, you know, probably during the day at the same time), the University of Minnesota has had a key role in many movies. This includes the 1980 classic Foolin’ Around, where boy meets rich girl, girl is richer than boy and boy must compete with other rich boy for girl’s affections.

The University of Minnesota isn’t playing around when it comes to the privilege of filming on their campus, either. They charge $1,000 per full day of commercial filming, and $2,500 overtime. These fees are for anything from theatrical motion pictures to television programmes and commercials.

Dear White People (2014)

In this movie, Samantha White, student at the fictional Winchester University, makes waves with her radio show (also called Dear White People), throwing light on the racism at her university. The University of Minnesota is the borrowed setting for the Ivy League Winchester38, with many scenes shot on campus. But the University of Minnesota isn’t the only higher education institution to have an acting role in this franchise (Dear White People is both a movie and a TV series). According to a sharp-eyed Reddit user, you can see the University of California Los Angeles’ Royce Hall in Season 2 of the Netflix series.

The primary setting of both the movie and the show is a fictional Ivy League University named Winchester University. According to the series, the university was established in 1826 and was initially only known for providing high education to white students. While many scenes depicting the university in the movie were shot at the University of Minnesota.

With Honors (1994)

The University of Minnesota also has a starring role as Harvard University in the film With Honors. As we know, With Honours is the story of a Harvard PhD student and a homeless man who steals his thesis. The University of Minnesota is clearly into method acting, going as far as to have artificial branches and leaves stapled onto its trees, as the local weather at the time meant that leaves hadn’t bloomed naturally on trees. The University of Minnesota’s Northrop Auditorium stood in for the role of Harvard’s Widener Library during the film.

University of Central Florida

Movies and TV series filmed: 19

If you want to film commercially at the University of Central Florida (UCF)36, you’ll have to call several weeks ahead in advance. UCF says that any television shows or filming commercials to be filmed on campus must be approved by the university.

SeaQuest DSV

Episodes of the 1990s series SeaQuest, which is part a Science Fiction, part Treasure Island exploration of life on a high-tech submarine, in an underwater world, were filmed at UCF. The series takes place in far distant time of 2018 (truly futuristic), when humankind has wrecked the planet’s natural resources (not too inaccurate) and is surviving on the ocean floor.

Incidentally, SeaQuest DSV also filmed at Florida Southern College (FSC), just over an hour’s drive from UCF. Seaquest filmed the episodes “Symphony for the Deep” and “Playtime” at FSC37. FSC alumni’s comments include: “I remember the film crews all over the campus. It was fun to watch” and “Loved the show and identifying where they were on campus…”.

University of Chicago

Movies and TV series filmed: 16

The University of Chicago has formed the backdrop of many films. Not only did famous, fictional professor Indiana Jones (of the films Raiders of the Lost Ark and the Temple of Doom) work at the University of Chicago, the university actually received a package addressed to him in 2012!40 The mysterious package contained the journal of Abner Ravenwood, the imaginary University of Chicago professor who was Jones’ mentor. The official story is that the journal was a movie prop that lost its original packacking, but I think we all know the truth … Indiana Jones is real, and you’d better watch out for that crystal skull.

As well as being the alma mater of Indiana Jones, the University of Chicago has a starring moment in another Harrison Ford film: The Fugitive41. The university’s John Crear Library was used as the Fugitive as the Chicago Memorial Hospital that Dr Richard Kimble (David Janssen) visits.

When Harry Met Sally (1989)

“I love that it takes you an hour and a half to order a sandwich. I love that you get a little crinkle above your nose when you’re looking at me like I’m nuts….”

That’s right, the University of Chicago is also the film-set (and the literal setting) for the iconic love story: When Harry Met Sally42. Even if you don’t know the movie, you’ll know its quotes, stitched into popular culture like a persistent thread.

When Harry Met Sally starts off in the actual University of Chicago Quad, when Harry picks up Sally for a drive to New York City. A blogger at the University of Chicago reminisces about this scene and writes: “Cars actually aren’t allowed to drive on the quad (maybe they were when the movie was shot, but not anymore!)”.

Emory University

Movies and TV series filmed: 14

Emory University, with its blazing red roofs are tucked into the surrounding hills of Atlanta, has served as a film-set for everything from the Vampire Diaries series, to films like Gifted (2017), which follows the story of child genius Mary, and the relatives who compete for custody of her.

Marvel classic Ant Man and the Wasp also buzzed to life on-campus at Emory University. Emory’s White Hall was transformed into Ant Man antagonist Bill Foster’s lab and classroom. A famous legal battle between an Emory university professor and a holocaust denier came back to life on Emory University’s campus in 2016, as part of the documentary “Denial”.

Hidden Figures (2016)

‘We’re shooting a human into space and it’s never been done before’ says Kevin Costner’s character in the film Hidden Figures. And who does it? Katherine Johnson, a Black female mathematician in Jim Crow-era America, who does the coding to get the first man on the moon. Despite her mathematical genius, Johnson still has to fight for recognition in the male-dominated, racially segregated NASA of the 1960s. Hidden Figures was partly filmed at Emory University. Emory’s Briarcliff Building A was used to create Kevin Costner’s 1960s research office and laboratory.43

So, that’s a wrap! We’ve gone through all of the most filmed universities in the world. If you ever visit one of these institutions you could be walking in the footsteps of actors as famous as Tom Hanks, Lindsay Lohan and Leonardo DiCaprio. And if you’re heading to one of these universities to study, get ready for stardom! You’re obviously cut out for a life in the spotlight.

References

1https://thetab.com/us/usc/2016/12/20/definitive-list-usc-tv-movies-31922https://campusfilming.usc.edu/fees/

3https://www.movie-locations.com/movies/f/Forrest-Gump.php

4https://www.iamnotastalker.com/2018/11/09/doheny-memorial-library-from-matilda/

5https://planning.ubc.ca/news/filming-returns-ubc-campus

6http://movie-locations.com/movies/b/Butterfly-Effect.php#:~:text=The%20Odeon%20is%20gone%2C%20but,in%20Vancouver’s%20Gastown%20district.

7https://planning.ubc.ca/news/filming-returns-ubc-campus

8https://dailyhive.com/vancouver/movies-tv-shows-filmed-at-ubc-2018

9https://magazine.utoronto.ca/campus/places/16-movies-you-probably-didnt-know-were-shot-at-u-of-t/

10https://juliekinnear.com/toronto-filming-locations/resident-evil-apocalypse-afterlife (toronto police received hundreds of calls)

11https://www.imdb.com/title/tt6015710/

12https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5975178/

13https://www.adelaide.edu.au/marketing-recruitment/make-a-request/filming-on-campus

14https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1438216/

15https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0066011/trivia

16https://www.thecrimson.com/article/2002/2/21/harvard-explained-every-director-has-license/

17https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Road_to_Perdition

18https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/With_Honors_(film)

19https://www.movie-locations.com/movies/p/Philadelphia.php

20https://www.thedp.com/article/2008/08/summer_recap_transformers_2_filmed_on_campus_in_june

21https://uk.advfn.com/stock-market/stock-news/84407888/125-full-sail-graduates-contributed-to-nominated

22https://www.fullsail.edu/about/full-sail-stories/wwe-debuts-nxt-on-usa-network-produced-weekly-at-full-sail

23https://www.atlasofwonders.com/2018/08/a-discovery-of-witches-where-filmed.html24https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Locations_in_His_Dark_Materials

25https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0420293/

26https://www.imdb.com/title/tt4248188/locations

27https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Filming_at_University_College_London

28Take that music vid – https://uclpimedia.com/online/ffs-how-much-did-it-cost-take-that-to-shoot-a-music-video-at-ucl

29https://www.ucl.ac.uk/news/2016/nov/7-ucls-best-throwback-photographs

30https://speccoll.library.arizona.edu/news/when-was-university-arizona-known-adams-college

31https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0049414/locations

32https://fordhamobserver.com/22507/features/a-film-history-of-fordham/

33https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0991032/

34https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0091344/

35https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0107148/

36https://thecinemaholic.com/where-is-netflixs-dear-white-people-filmed/

37https://www.ucf.edu/news/reporting-on-ucf/

38https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0106126/locations

40https://news.uchicago.edu/story/indiana-jones-materials-appear-display-oriental-institute-museum

41https://collegeadmissions.uchicago.edu/uncommon-blog/chicago-tv-and-movies

42https://collegeadmissions.uchicago.edu/uncommon-blog/chicago-tv-and-movies

43https://emorywheel.com/26443-2/