14 Films Sets You Can Visit at Universal Studios Hollywood

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Cream coloured suburban style home with green lawn in the front and a large tree to the left. There is an American style post box outside as well.
Did you know many of your favourite films were filmed at Universal Studios Hollywood?

Universal Studios Hollywood is an amazing theme park, but it’s also a real-life movie set too, with dozens of films being shot there over the last 50 years. As part of the park’s Studio Tram tour, you can visit and even walk around some of the most iconic sets from film history. Check out our guide to some of the films you’ll have definitely seen but may not realise were filmed at the park, and below you’ll find our list of 14 films sets that you can experience as part of the Studio Tour ride.

As with our Orlando attraction tickets, make sure to book your studio tour tickets in advance to avoid disappointment. 

 

1.  Jurassic Park

 

Jurassic Park Set at Universal Studios Hollywood

 

 This incredible science fiction adventure featured ground-breaking CGI of the time and life-sized animatronic dinosaurs

Despite the title of the film, Brachiosaurus and Dilophosaurus are the only dinosaurs featured that are from the Jurassic period; all other species featured did not exist until the Cretaceous period. Somehow, we think that the film “Cretaceous Park” may not have been as successful!

The well informed tour guides will also explain to you how the sounds included in the box office hits are made. Did you know the T-Rex’s roar is a mixture of the sounds made by baby elephants, tigers and alligators!

 

2. Jaws and Jaws 2

 

Jaws 2 set at Universal Studios Hollywood

 

The Jaws event at Universal Studios Hollywood opened after the release of the 1975 film. During your Studio Tour, you will pass by the huge animatronic shark from the movie. The movie was entirely shot on location at Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts, but parts of the set were recreated exactly for the Studio Tour.

 

 

As you can see, during the tour, Sheriff George the diver, is unfortunately eaten by the huge shark. Whilst you hide from the beast behind a row of oil drums, they unexpectedly catch fire. But don’t look too closely into the water as a deadly surprise awaits!

 

3. King Kong

 

King Kong set at Universal Studios Hollywood

Pass within feet of the incredible Kong: Skull Island set and experience a scene straight from the blockbuster! Then, as you head into Skull Island, it’s time to put your 3D glasses on, as you will encounter the world’s largest 3D experience.  Brace yourself for a 360-degree immersive experience as deadly dinosaurs leap out of the jungle all around you, and an epic fight scene breaks out between Kong and a fearsome T-Rex!

 

4. Transformers

 

Transformers set at Universal Studios Hollywood

 

Despite Transformers being released by Paramount Pictures, a substantial part of the climactic battle in Mission City was shot on New York Street at Universal Studios Hollywood. Additional parts of the city were added in with CGI post-production, and you have to look quite hard to spot the New York style buildings but they are there!

For even more Transformers action, experience “The Greatest Battle You'll Ever Ride” with the Transformers™: The Ride-3D. Start off on foot as you walk through the corridors of the military base N.E.S.T, then ride through an incredible battle between the Autobots and the Decepticons.

 

5. Home Alone 2 

 

Most of the movie was shot on location in New York City, as the film is set there. However, due to the nature of a lot of the stunts and special effects that take place in the house, some exterior scenes were filmed in Brownstone Street at Universal Studios Hollywood. 

 

The New York area of the Backlot has been used many times in different products over the years. It was partly destroyed in the 2008 fire, but Brownstone Street is still available to see during your Studio Tour.

You may not know that Donald Trump makes a cameo in the film! He gives Kevin directions to the lobby!

 

6. Young Sheldon

 

Young Sheldon, the spinoff show from the hugely successful show The Big Bang Theory has found great success since its initial release in 2017, with season 7, its final season, ending in May 2024. On the studio tour you can spot multiple filming locations from the show, including the college in Texas Sheldon attended.

 

The actors from this hit show in the past had been spotted by eager-eyed fans during their studio tours, with the actors sometimes stopping to grab photos with their fans during their busy filming schedule!

 

7. Back to the Future

 

Back to the future set at Universal Studios Hollywood

 

This cult classic from the 80’s is ranked as one of the top 100 greatest movies of all time and one of the 50 films you must see before you die. The scenes with Marty McFly skateboarding are credited as the top catalyst for the popularity of the sport.

One of the places you can explore on the Universal Studios Hollywood Studio Tour is the Court House Square where some of the most iconic scenes from Back to the Future were set. If you take the VIP tour, you can even get off the tour bus and have a walk around the set, with a stop for a photo on those famous courthouse steps!

 

8. Psycho

 

Set of Psycho at Universal Studios

The Bates Motel is one of the key locations on the Universal Studios Hollywood studio tour, where you’ll spot the sign swinging eerily in the wind and the original car from the movie parked outside. Next door is the set of the Psycho House, with creepy steps leading up to the spooky mansion located on the hill. You’ll have the chance to get up close and personal on all the main sets of the movie… if you dare of course.

 

9. Gilmore Girls 

 

Step into Stars Hollow on this studio tour! Gilmore Girls, a popular TV series which follows a single mother and her daughter, Lorelai and Rory Gilmore, was first released in 2003 and has found immense success. If you are a fan of this hit TV show, you must visit the Universal Studios Hollywood studio tour, where you will be able to walk around Stars Hollow, visit Luke’s Diner and stand inside the Gilmore’s house! The tour guides will explain interesting facts as you look around the set which looks quite different from the original TV series as it has been reused for programmes such as Pretty Little Liars.

 

10. War of the Worlds

 

War of the World set at Universal Studios Hollywood

 

One of the most iconic sets created at Universal Studios Hollywood was for the aeroplane crash scene in the Hollywood epic War of the Worlds, starring Tom Cruise. To create this set, the Universal creative scene bought a real-life 747 ex-commercial jet for a whopping $60,000, before chopping it into pieces to create the dramatic apocalyptic set. During the VIP tour, guests can exit the tram and check out the crashed 747 up close, walking in the footsteps of stars such as Tom Cruise and director Steven Spielberg.  

 

11. Bruce Almighty

 

Screenshot from Bruce Almighty

 

Universal Studios Hollywood was the setting for a lot of the scenes in Jim Carey’s 2003 film Bruce Almighty. A lot of the scenes were shot on Brownstone Street, a set in Universal that aims to look like a generic street in the US and which plays home to Jim Carey’s character Bruce and his girlfriend in the film. There’s also the scene in the film where Bruce walks on water, which is shot on Falls Lake, somewhere Jim Carey will recognise from his time shooting The Truman Show!

 

12. Wisteria Lane from Desperate Housewives

 

Wisteria Lane set at Universal Studios Hollywood

 

Most commonly known now as Wisteria Lane from Desperate Housewives, Colonial Street is part of the backlot sets at Universal Studios Hollywood. Since the series ended, the street has undergone a small makeover to remove the famous white picket fences and wisteria, in order to allow for filming of other productions.

Colonial Street has also been used as a film set for: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Beethoven, Gremlins, Sabrina The Teenage Witch, and music videos from The Offspring’s Why Don’t You Get A Job?, Smash Mouth’s All Star, and Nelly and Kelly Rowland’s Dilemma.

If you opt for the Universal Studios Hollywood VIP Experience, you can even walk along the street rather than viewing it from the tram during the Studio Tour!

 

13. Pirates of the Caribbean

 

Mexican Street, April 2016 (c) theStudioTour.com

 

The incredible swashbuckling epic is based on the ride at Walt Disney World and Disneyland® Paris and premiered at Disneyland California. Released in 2003, the first Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl was a huge success despite many journalists predicting it was going to be a flop. Whilst a lot of the film was mostly shot on location across islands in the Caribbean, namely St Vincent and the Grenadines, the Backlot at Universal Studios Hollywood was used for parts of Port Royal, Will's workshop and Tortuga. Pictured above is Old Mexico, used for shots of Port Royal, and you can visit this set during your tour!

 

14. Jupiter’s claim

Universal's studio tour debuted a brand-new set in 2022 based on Jordan Peele’s new horror epic Nope. The set showcases the film’s fictional theme park, Jupiter’s Claim, which is “predicated on the white-washed history and aesthetics of the California Gold Rush”. However, everything is not as it seems!

 

Thinking of visiting Universal Studios Hollywood? Don't miss the Studio Tour and, if you're a huge film buff, make sure you check out the VIP tour which gives you the tour, private guide, the chance to get off the tram and interact with the sets, a peek at the props department and a VIP breakfast and lunch.

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