ACCESS SALEM'S LOT TRIP 01: 16-31/05/2015

As part of a fantastic holiday with my wife Jaine driving up the Pacific Coast Highway (California Route 1), I got to meet a very special Salem’s Lot person and visited as many of the filming locations as possible.

With stops of never less than two nights in Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Monterey, Sausalito, Ferndale, and a final night in San Francisco, it was a once-in-a-lifetime chance for us to visit the West Coast of the USA, and for me to undertake some well overdue location photography.

Los Angeles and Ferndale were the SL-related stops – everything else was pure holiday, and we both thoroughly enjoyed the time away. Although we drove over a thousand miles, it never felt like anything other than the great escape we had both planned.

Here’s a run-down of the SL-location-hunting I did:

In the morning we visited the following locations as part of the Warner Bros. Studios VIP STUDIO TOUR. (Please note that their website has been updated since we went on the VIP Tour and it is now known simply as The Studio Tour. There are big changes coming on JULY 16.)

The non-SL-related highlight for me was visiting the set of THE BIG BANG THEORY. Sheldon Cooper, I've been/seen where you live!

Of course, there was nothing SL-related left inside either of the two Sound Stages used back in 1979, and no internal photography was allowed anyway, but this is where many of the interiors and special effects were shot:

Sound Stage 09
02: THE MARSTEN HOUSE Location 02.02
15: THE PETRIE HOUSE Location 15.03

©2015 Ian S. Bolton
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Notes: Sound Stage 9 plaque. SL is in bottom left column.

Sound Stage 12
05: CROCKETT REALTY Location 05.01
14: CUSTOM HOUSE WHARF Location 14.01
15: THE PETRIE HOUSE Location 15.01 & 15.02
17: THE GLICK HOUSE Location 17.03
18: THE HOSPITAL Locations 18.01, 18.02, 18.03 & 18.05
22: THE BURKE HOUSE Location 22.01 & 22.04
23: THE JAIL CELL Location 23.01
25: THE FUNERAL PARLOR Location 25.01

©2015 Ian S. Bolton
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Notes: Sound Stage 12 without its plaque (which should have been positioned under the grey lamp, but is in the process of being updated).

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Notes: The old plaque under the shadow of the grey lamp - SL at absolute bottom left (please excuse image quality).

In the afternoon we visited and photographed the following location:
01: XIMICO, GUATEMALA Location 01.02

I went to meet SL Producer Richard Kobritz and was privileged enough to be given complete access to the two leather-bound volumes of his SL production notes. I was also allowed a Q&A session with him afterwards (more like an interrogation - sorry Richard). A very well spent day out.

Please see MEETING... RICHARD KOBRITZ for details.

©2015 Ian S. Bolton
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Notes: The two hallowed volumes of production notes (they are both significant, weighty tomes, approximately 2½ inches thick).

I visited and photographed the following locations:
02: THE MARSTEN HOUSE Location 02.01
03: ROADS IN THE LOT Locations 03.01, 03.02, 03.03, 03.05, 03.06, 03.07, 03.11, 03.12 & 03.15
04: BARLOW & STRAKER FINE ANTIQUES Location 04.02 & 04.03
05: CROCKETT REALTY Locations 05.02 & 05.03
06: EVA MILLER’S BOARDINGHOUSE Locations 06.02 & 06.03
10: THE NORTON HOUSE Location 10.02
12: THE SCHOOL Location 12.02
18: THE HOSPITAL Location 18.06
21: THE HANGOUT Location 21.01
22: THE BURKE HOUSE Location 22.06
27: THE CHURCH Location 27.02

Whilst walking the streets of Ferndale I bumped into Caroline Titus, the editor of the FERNDALE ENTERPRISE. The 137-year-old newspaper, and her AIR BNB accommodation, are based in the same building used as the exterior of Barlow & Straker Fine Antiques (and you can stay there - if you dare - for about £100 per night)! She hails from the UK originally, and, having both been in touch via email over several years, she immediately arranged to interview me about my SL obsession. Along with our other halves we met that evening at the bar of the VICTORIAN INNGo HERE to see what (gory) details she found out!

©2015 Ian S. Bolton
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Notes: 'The Marsten House' as the location looks today (from an angle not seen in the film).

All in all, we had a great time. Thank you California!


Dear David,

I can't believe you're no longer with us.

I had to go back to this article of yours, which seems so long ago.

I eventually got to visit Ferndale after all (in 2015), and have dedicated the trip to you, my friend.

You will always be one of my 'Salem's Lotties'.

©2015 Trine Landsem