The bright lights, poker tables, the beauty and glamour – there is no doubt that Las Vegas is one of the most favorite filming locations of directors. There are over a hundred movies shot in Sin City’s classy casinos and breathtaking Strip sceneries. Some of these filming locations are now gone and others only happened on a Hollywood stage. However, there are still a few places in the Strip and in downtown Vegas where you can visit scenes from iconic movies, old and new.
Read on below and check out some of the most famous filming locations in Las Vegas.
Begin your tour of Las Vegas’ most iconic filming locations at the south of the Strip with The Tropicana. The hotel is one of the city’s first casinos established in the 1950s and has seen the most unforgettable events in Las Vegas. Although there had been few renovations at the place, it has kept its vintage designs including the iconic 1957 red Chevrolet parked in front of the hotel.
The Tropicana had been linked to The Mob both on film and off screen during its vibrant history. The hotel’s casino had been featured in the first Godfather film. The Tropicana’s casino was also the venue for the French show Folies Bergère for over 40 years. The show’s barely naked showgirls were included in films such as Viva Las Vegas and the James Bond film Diamonds Are Forever.
Most of the scenes in the hit 2001 film Oceans 11 was filmed at the Bellagio thanks to a special contract between the current hotel owner Steve Wynn and the film producer Jerry Weintraub. Because of the two’s friendship, Wynn allowed the movie’s cast and staff 24-hour full access of the hotel’s grounds and services. The contract even allowed the film crew to halt valet parking and turn off the Bellagio fountains for a few days.
In the movie, after the thieves have successfully robbed the hotel’s vault, they walked together on Las Vegas Boulevard and watched the Bellagio Fountain Show. This scene is greatly credited for making the Bellagio Fountains as popular as today. The fountains make a great stopover after a tiring day of doing adventurous shenanigans in the city. The hotel is also listed as one of the best things to see in Las Vegas.
Although the 2009 crazy comedy The Hangover was shot in various areas in Las Vegas Valley, including the famous pub Atomic Liquors, the location that had the most screen time was Caesars Palace. This was the place in the movie where they held a bachelor party and eventually lose the groom. The movie featured Caesar Palace’s lobby, main entrance, hallways, elevators, pools and even the roof. Sadly, the suite where the actors stayed in the movie is non-existent in real life and was only made in a stage at the Warner Brothers Studios. However, the suite was modeled to look after The Forum Tower’s Emperor Suite which was featured in another movie called Rain Man.
The best place you can have some photo ops inside the hotels is in its hotel registration desk. We strongly suggest taking a selfie at their breathtaking marble and gold lobby. After taking a few photos, you can head straight to Madame Tussaud’s where you can pose for photos with life-sized wax statues of your favorite celebrities from the film’s franchise.
Have a taste of Italy by visiting the Venetian hotel located at the Strip. The hotel features replicas of popular Venetian landmarks such as the Piazza San Marco, Doge’s Palace, Rialto Bridge and St. Mark’s Campanile along with serenading by gondoliers. It is found on the old site of the former Sands casino which was one of the main filming locations of the 1960 hit film Oceans 11. The Venetian itself was featured in the 2001 comedy movie Rat Race starring John Cleese and Rowan Atkinson. One of the hotel’s suites was also showcased in Sandra Bullock’s Miss Congeniality 2 in 2005.
Circus Circus in undoubtedly one of the most amazing attractions in Las Vegas. It caters the biggest top in the world where you can watch classic circus shows such as clowns, flying trapeze, jugglers and tightrope artists in free live shows. Although the place was mentioned in the book Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, the place never made it the movie version because the owners refused to give permission to shoot in the area. However, Circus Circus was featured later in two various action films – Diamonds are Forever and Austin Powers.
Finally, head on to the Neon Museum and daze your eyes in amazing lights. The best time to visit here is during the night but it is not a totally safe neighborhood so we suggest you take a taxi if you are going alone. This is the place where old signages from old casinos spend their retirement after being replaced. The place is home to over a hundred signs that date back to the early 1900s.
The original boneyard location was where Danny DeVito’s character came to an end in the comedy movie Mars Attacks! Ever since, some of the signages were moved to a new place which was featured in a 2013 movie of Michael Douglas called “Las Vegas” and in various music videos. The museum’s entrance was also used in the film Casino.