Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California.

A ‘Western’ Surprise!

Westerns – we all know of them as movies of the American Old West with all that swag! But driving cross country on a trip to see the Californian National Parks, a Western was the last thing on our minds. 

It was just after dusk when we entered the small town of Lone Pine, 3.5 hours drove from LA and 93 miles from America’s beautiful Death Valley National Park. We were shaken with the cold weather and stirred by the joy of being so close to a destination that topped our bucket list, and were gearing to visit it first thing the next morning. Knowing little that there was a charming little museum of Western Film History right in our backyard. As the server in the diner mentioned the museum, we could suddenly hear Ennio Morricone’s everlasting theme of The Good, Bad and Ugly ring in our ears, remembering Heston’s sassy one liners, the cowboy hats and the whistles. Now our hearts were pounding with excitement as though we discovered a little gem. Well, what do you expect from filmmakers anyway ? 

In the high desert town of country boys, with a Museum of Western Film History, Lone Pine, and charming locations of Alabama Hills around us, it was all that we could ask for to get distracted. Just for a little worthy while. 

Alabama Hills
Alabama Hills. The beautiful location for many a Western Film.
Film History Museum
The Film History Museum at Lone Pine, California.
Paintings of film shootings. Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California.
Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California.
Paintings depict scenes from Classic Western Movies shot here around Lone Pine, California.
Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California.
Shikha strikes a pose. Ladies and Gentlemen, the Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California.
Technicolor 3 Strip Camera
I was fascinated to see a 3-Strip Technicolor at the Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California. In the early days of Colour movies, 3 strips of B/W film (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow) were shot to create the colour.
Param was fascinated to see a 3-Strip Technicolor at the Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California. In the early days of Colour movies, 3 strips of B/W film (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow) were shot to create the colour.
Panavision Camera
Meanwhile I check out a Panavision Camera. These cameras have been used till day to shoot some of the most loved movies ever.
Movie Posters at Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California.
Posters of all the movies shot at Lone Pine. It has been one of the favourite locations for Western Movies.
Actor Portraits at Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California.
Another exhibit featuring famous actors that have shot in Lone Pine, California.
Yellow Sky Movie Poster
Gregory Peck shot here too! The poster of Yellow Sky. I feel like revisiting these old westerns.
Costume at Lone Pine
Costumes, memorabilia etc at the Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California.. It is a wonderful museum to spend a day in.
Tracking Vehicle
A classic ‘tracking vehicle’ at the Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California. You can see how lights and scaffoldings have been affixed to make moving shots possible. Today, in movie shoots, the principals are the same, only the gear is more ‘sophisticated’.
Hateful Eight Crew
Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Hateful Eight’ was also shot in Lone Pine. Here, the main cast and director’s autographs added to the exhibits at Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California.
Since 1920
Lone Pine, California and the surrounding area has been one of Hollywood’s favourite locations for westerns since the 1920s. And we landed here quite by a pleasant surprise.

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