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Fall 2008 | Queer Horror Movie Locales

Fall 2008 | Queer Horror Movie Locales

Just in time for Halloween, Matthew Link takes us on a tour of our favorite "Queer Horror" movie locales, where gay sensibilities and the dark unknown campily converge…

Notable quotable:?Mother, please!?
The most famous trans horror movie ever made, this low-budget thriller was shot primarily on Universal Studios? Los Angeles back lot (the shower scene was filmed in studio 18). Ever since 1964 the intact Bates House has been a major draw on the public tram tour. (The Bates Motel was added to the tour later.) Marion Crane (Janet Leigh) escapes Phoenix by driving on California?s Route 99 between Fresno and Bakersfield, and in the town of Gorman, northwest of L.A. off Interstate 5, she?s stopped by the menacing highway patrolman.

The lot where she switches cars still exists as Century West BMW (4245 Lankershim Blvd.), just north of Universal.

Notable quotable:?But ya are, Blanche, ya are in that chair.?
This film relaunched the careers of Bette Davis and Joan Crawford and gave birth to the ?Psycho-Biddy? genre of horror films starring over-the-hill hammy actresses in tales of extreme dysfunction.

The sisters? decaying mansion still stands at 172 S. McCadden Pl. between West First and West Second streets in L.A.?s Hancock Park area, south of Hollywood.
The beach where Joan finally croaks is Paradise Cove on Zuma Beach, north of Malibu.

Notable quotable:?You?re a vile, sorry little bitch!?
Another Bette Davis Psycho-Biddy classic, nearly all shot at Houmas House (40136 Highway 942 near Darrow, La.), a Greek Revival mansion that was once one of the richest and largest plantations in the world. Now gay-managed and open to the public, the haunted ?Sugar Palace? has 16 rooms filled with Louisiana artwork and strange antiques like a vampire-killing kit! The interiors were studio-filmed, but the tour guides gleefully reenact murderous exterior scenes and gush gossip while touring the room where Bette crankily resided during production.

Notable quotable:?She?s that kind of a woman. She?s?European.?
This punk?New Wave vampire flick is rife with homo vibes, from David Bowie to Catherine Deneuve bedding Susan Sarandon. Although set in New York City, the film was shot in London: The opening scenes where the vampires pick up their sexual victims is none other than London?s gay megaclub Heaven (located under the arches of Charing Cross station).

The impressive Art Deco Grand Hall of the University of London?s Senate House stands in for Susan?s medical clinic.

Notable quotable:?My invitation was open to anyone?. But it was a vampire that accepted it.?
This time-shifting tale of dandy-cum-vampire Lestat (Tom Cruise) pining after hunky Louis (Brad Pitt) plays like a queer love story. The exterior of Louis/Brad?s triangular ?St. Martin Hotel? is instantly recognizable as you cruise down Market Street, at the corner of Golden Gate Avenue and Taylor Street in San Francisco. Louis/Brad?s estate is the antebellum Oak Alley Plantation (3645 Highway 18 in Vacherie, La.), open to the public.

Spooky undead scenes were shot at Lafayette Cemetery #1 (1400 Washington Ave., New Orleans), and the opulent Parisian hotel where the queer vampire family lived is none other than the Op?ra National de Paris (Palais Garnier, 8 Rue Scribe).

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