Iverson Movie Ranch consisted of 500 acres located about 20 miles north of LA, near Simi Valley. It started making movies in 1912 and later added TV programs for a total of about 3,500 shoots, making it the most photographed movie location in history. Leading actors to work there included Richard Burton in” The Robe,” John Wayne in “Stagecoach,”and the Lone Ranger. Untold B-Westerns, the Republic Serials of the 1940s, and six seasons of Bonanza were filmed there. In 1967 the Simi Vally Freeway came through and, along with housing and condo development, spelled the beginning of the end for the property. Adding to that was a devastating fire in 1970 that burned 100,000 acres in the area fueled by 80-mile-an-hour winds. However, the last movie wasn’t made until 1997–the not to be missed Motorcycle Cheerleading Mamas. The photos for this month and the next show a range of then and now as some areas are unchanged, some are modified, and others are all but gone. The least changed is Garden of the Gods, now a 23-acre public park.
” Richard the Lion Hearted” at Garden of the Gods (1923)
Note the painting of the top of the castle, which was superimposed on film, has been removed in this photo:
A scene from ” Stagecoach” at Garden of the Gods
Old Man of the Gorge in a 1956 Film