Thursday, April 14, 2016

Grease (1978)

Rydell High School was tough.  You walked in looking like a spring chicken at fourteen but you graduated looking like you got your diploma ten years ago.  Stockard Channing still holds the crown for the oldest actor to portray a high school student (at age 33) which she almost had to relinquish in 1990 to Gabrielle Carteris on Beverly Hills, 90210 (1990-2000).  Aside from the obvious age difference of the cast, Grease is a classic and a bit of a conundrum.  Despite being filled with sexual references, most kids were allowed to watch this movie.  I didn't get half the things in the Greased Lightning number until many years later.  And the incredible soundtrack will keep karaoke bars in business forever.

Grease was filmed in Malibu, Venice, Los Feliz, Huntington Park and Los Angeles, CA

Location: The Beach
Address: Leo Carillo State Beach, Malibu, CA

This location was also used in Less Than Zero (1987)The Karate Kid (1984) and Beverly Hills, 90210 (1990-2000)

Location: Rydell High School
Address: 13000 Venice Boulevard, Venice, CA   Venice High School

The Pink Ladies arrive...

Those summer nights...

Danny Zuko… turns jock?

Rizzo belts it out...

School's out forever!

Location: Frenchy's House
Address: 4525 Kingswell Avenue, Los Feliz, CA

Location: Make Out Point
Address: 16221 Mulholland Drive, Los Angeles, CA

This is actually the parking lot for The Bel Air Presbyterian Church.

Location: The Frosty Palace
Address: Paramount Studios Backlot - New York Street, Los Angeles, CA

Gotta love when Vi misses the light switch by a country mile.

Location: Thunder Road
Address: Under 6th Street Bridge looking to 4th Street Bridge

This 6th Street Bridge was closed so this is actually looking in the reverse direction.

This shot is looking toward the 1st Street Bridge:

Location: The Carnival
Address: 3939 Tracy Street, Los Feliz, CA  John Marshall High School

Rydell High switches locations at the end for the carnival and where the gang collects their social security checks yearbooks...

John Marshall High School has been featured in several movies and television show including Girls Just Want To Have Fun (1985)Boy Meets World (1993-2000)Like Father Like Son (1987) and A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984).

Locations Visited: March 2016, October 2016


  1. These are FANTASTIC! I REALLY enjoyed seeing these locations as they appear today. THANK YOU for sharing your experience with us.

    1. Thanks, Pastor Scott! I'm glad you enjoyed them!

  2. Great site - love all the location info! Frosty Palace and the street the greased lightening car drives up from is actually the east/west street north east of the photo. The car comes from the building which is now used as the police station in "Rizzoli and Isles," and turns north where the Frosty Palace facade is set up in the street east of stage 32. The Frosty Palace entrance is in the street where there is a subway entrance, and near where Madonna sat in the chair at the beginning of her Gap commercial.

    1. Thanks! On the tour they showed clips of scenes that were shot on the blocks we stopped off at so that's why I thought it was that street. Next time I take the tour I'll try and grab a photo.

    2. That actually was not Greased Lightning, it was the Scorpions car. They came from the north on New York street on the lot heading south, turning west. On Google images of the lot from the '70's, there is an aerial shot and you can see the theater that the car passes by and the cemetery is north of the lot. Cool shots Brian, you are correct.

    3. For clarification, the last post signed anonymous (Nov. 27) was mine, not the the original from June 10. Sorry.

    4. Thanks for the clarification, Leester!

    5. You got it Brian. I've been to Paramount too, very cool.

    6. The part of the Paramount backlot that appears in “Grease” was the original "New York Street" set, dating from about the late 1920s. On Thursday 25 August 1983, the Paramount lot was struck by a large fire, destroying most of its standing outdoors sets, including the "New York Street" set. The fire occurred while “Star Trek III: The Search for Spock” was being filmed on soundstages nearby.

      "New York Street" also appears briefly in “War Of The Worlds” (1953), “G.I. Blues” (1960) and “Breakfast At Tiffany’s” (1961), among many other films and TV shows.

      Adjacent to the "New York Street" set were ”McFadden" and "Boston" streets, which can be seen in the original Star Trek episode "A Piece of the Action" (1967).

      The area which was destroyed by fire in 1983 was rebuilt in 1991-1992, although the buildings are all very different from the pre-1983 buildings and on a quite different layout, with few (if any) of the new streets following the arrangement of the old backlot.

      The 2016 book Paramount: City of Dreams by Steve Bingen & Marc Wanamaker details this with photos and maps.

  3. You missed Huntington Park High School. The office scene in the beginning when Sandy is trying to find her classes. The hall scene right after that when the guys are already late for class, and the most well known the dance battle took place in the basketball gym. Source, I went there and I recognize each area.

    1. Every trip I try and get down there. Next time for sure.