San Francisco has a long history of being a phenomenal filming location. Some of the greatest movies of all time were shot in our fair city (including Academy Award winners such as Forrest Gump and classics like Dark Passage starring Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall). We decided to take a closer look. Below is data pulled from the City of San Francisco containing information about every film permit ever filed in the city.

1994—The Most Prolific Year for Filmmakers Using San Francisco Locations

Fun fact: among the movies that were shot in San Francisco are Mona Lisa Smile, The Parent Trap (the Lindsay Lohan version) and City of Angels (go figure).

Clint Eastwood and San Francisco Seem to Go Together

Eastwood is to acting in San Francisco as Hitchcock is to directing in San Francisco —that is, both happened quite often. Here is a list of popular actors and actresses who made frequent appearances in movies shot in San Francisco. Note that our former governor shot three films in our beautiful city.

The Fairmont is a Surprisingly Popular Filming Location 

Below are the most popular filming locations in the city.

Location

Total

Golden Gate Bridge

27

City Hall

21

Fairmont Hotel (950 Mason Street, Nob Hill)

18

Chinatown

10

Coit Tower

10

St. Peter & Paul Church

10

Treasure Island

10

Alcatraz Island

8

Bay Bridge

8

Golden Gate Park

8

Grace Cathedral Episcopal Church (1100 California Street)

8

Hall of Justice (850 Bryant Street)

7

Palace of Fine Arts (3301 Lyon Street)

7

Postcard Row (Alamo Square, Hayes Valley)

7

Ferry Building

6

Fort Point (Presidio, Golden Gate National Recreation Area)

6

Steinhart Aquarium

5

Union Square

5

Seeing this data makes us nostalgic about some of the great—and some of the not-so-great—movies shot in the city.