Sunday, September 3, 2017

Sleeping With The Enemy (1991)

Laaaaauuuuuuura!  A template for Lifetime movies to come, Sleeping With The Enemy is a guilty pleasure for the masses.  Julia Roberts plays a battered housewife held prisoner in an idyllic beachfront property on The Cape.  She's found the perfect opportunity to escape when she and her abusive OCD husband Martin are invited to go sailing with a neighbor who makes Gilligan look like Sir Francis Drake.  Thought to have drowned, Laura relocates to Cedar Falls, Iowa to start a new life and be closer to her ailing mother.  She gets over her abuse alarmingly fast and begins a relationship with the semi-creepy guy next door.  Just as her life is back on track, Martin gets clued in that his wife is still alive.  Laura soon finds her bath towels and food cans perfectly aligned again before finally blowing Martin away.    

Sleeping With The Enemy has plot holes you can drive a truck through.  I can't TELL you how many times I've rented a place with no ID or a credit check.  Another favorite is Martin not using the toilet after Laura dies, but then deciding to bleed out into it instead of washing his hands. Julia Roberts picks up the baton from Halloween II (1981)'s Jamie Lee Curtis for most obvious wig in a movie.  Only to cut her hair, don another wig later used in a Goddess segment from Showgirls (1995), and then have her hair appear longer again.  And if you're confused by the cutesy, yet out of place, props department montage, don't be.  Pretty Woman (1990) was released just prior to filming, and the producers realized they had a rom com star in the making and decided to sandwich in the block of Velveeta. 

Sleeping With The Enemy was filmed in Clinton, Abbeville, Waterloo and Spartanburg, SC and Wrightsville Beach, Kure Beach and Wilmington, NC

Location: Martin & Laura's Cape Cod House
Address: 2700 Lumina Avenue, Wrightsville Beach, NC

Just like Bernie Lomax's house from Weekend At Bernie's (1989), Martin & Laura's house was a facade built specifically for the film and then torn down right afterwards.  Maybe it's a requirement of the North Carolina Film Office, but it saddens me to know two sweet pieces of real estate don't actually exist.  The Shell Island Resort now stands in it's place...

Location: The "Welcome to Iowa" Sign
Address: Highway 221 South, Waterloo, SC

The exact spot is not known but somewhere along Highway 221 close to The Rolling S Golf Club is where the bus passes the "Welcome to Iowa" sign...

Location: Cedar Falls Town Square
Address: Court Square, Abbeville, SC

This area is seen again when Laura/Sara calls her mother...

And during the 4th of July parade...

Location: Laura/Sara's House
Address: 404 Magazine Street, Abbeville, SC

In the movie, the address of the house is actually 408...

Location: Ben's House
Address: 402 Magazine Street, Abbeville, SC

Location: The University of Northern Iowa
Address: 503 S Broad Street, Clinton, SC  Presbyterian College

My trip to the Carolinas began with an early spring monsoon.  Luckily, the rain let up for a few minutes upon my arrival in Abbeville, but when I got to Clinton, it was pouring so some shots are not exactly matched up.

The Library where "Sara" worked is Edmunds Hall...

Georgia Hall is seen when the drama teacher Martin mistakens for Ben walks back to his car...

After pistol-whipping the gay drama teacher, Martin is seen walking past Jacobs Hall...

It is seen again later when Ben exits the building...

Location: The Carnival
Address: 1739 Hewlett Drive, Wilmington, NC 
Cape Fear Fair & Expo

Oddly located at The Wilmington Airport...

Location: Laura Takes Center Stage
Address: 100 Court Square, Abbeville, SC  Abbeville Opera House

Many thanks to fine folks at The Abbeville Opera House for letting me take a peak...

Still Need To Visit:

Laura's Funeral
Laura's Swimming Lesson
The Iowa Nursing Home

Still Need To Locate:

The Minnesota Nursing Home

Locations Visited: April 2016


  1. Thx for this site. I enjoyed much. Maybe I have a info for you according the 'Minnesota Nursing Home':

    A section of the old Spartanburg County Nursing Home, on New Cut Road, was remodeled for filming scenes of the movie. The building was later torn down and is now part of Spartanburg Community College's property. (Thank you Jayne Marsh for sharing this tidbit and for also letting us know that Julia Roberts stayed at the Residence Inn on Fairforest Road.)

    This I found under


    1. Glad you enjoyed the pics! I actually came across that website when I was doing research for the locations. I was under the impression they were talking about the nursing home where Laura visits her mother. I couldn't find any information on the building seen when Martin visits the nursing home she was transferred out of.

  2. Hey! The picture location you attributed to Neville Hall on Presbyterian College's campus is actually Georgia Hall, a residence building. Great job with the article!

    1. Thank you and thanks for the correction! I updated the page.

    2. The modern picture is showing Neville hall, I could send you a picture of Georgia hall if you would like to update the photo as well!