Yuma Film History

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Lights, Camera, Action!
Yuma, Arizona Continues to Be a Prime Filming Location

Since the late 1920’s, Yuma has been an ideal location for filming movies, TV shows, and commercials. The region boasts ideal filming locations with diverse landscapes ranging from the Colorado River to the Imperial Sand Dunes National Recreation Area, Algodones in bordering Mexico, Fort Yuma-Quechan and Cocopah Indian Reservations, and different sites like the Yuma Territorial Prison, the Quartermaster Depot, the ‘ghost train’ at Pivot Point, acres of farmlands, and the historic downtown district. With an international airport, numerous hotel rooms, restaurants, parks, trails, and golf courses, the city has all the amenities to accommodate film crews, whether they are working on set or taking a break, and the historic Yuma Theatre is a popular site to host film screenings.

Hollywood movies filmed in and around Yuma, Arizona include:

  • 1930’s ‘Morocco’ starring Gary Cooper and Marlene Dietrich.
  • 1942's 'Road to Morocco', directed by David Butler, starring Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Dorothy Lamour, and Anthony Quinn.
  • 1943’s ‘Sahara’, starring Humphry Bogart, Lloyd Bridges, and Bruce Bennett.
  • The original 1957's version of '3:10 to Yuma', directed by Delmer Daves, starring Glenn Ford and Van Heflin.
  • 1977’s ‘Stars Wars’, featuring Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, and Mark Hamill.
  • 1987's 'Spaceballs’, directed by Mel Brooks, starring Mel Brooks, John Candy, Rick Moranis, and Bill Pullman
  • 1983’s ‘Return of the Jedi’, starring Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, and Mark Hamill.
  • 1987’s ‘Spaceballs’ starring John Candy, Mel Brooks, and Rick Moranis.
  • A remake of 'The Getaway' in 1993, directed by Ronald Donaldson, starring Alec Baldwin and Kim Basinger, with Michael Madsen, James Woods, Philip Seymour Hoffman, and Jennifer Tilly in supporting roles
  • 1993’s ‘True Lies’ with Arnold Swartzinegger.
  • 1993’s ‘Stargate’ with Kurt Russell and James Spader.
  • 2005's 'Jarhead', directed by Sam Mendes, starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Jamie Foxx, Peter Sarsgaard, and Chris   Cooper.
  • 2011's 'To Kill a Memory', filmed at Yuma's Territorial Prison.

On April 10, 2015, when the movie ‘Cowboy Zombies’ showed at the Historic Yuma Theater. Produced by the Winters Film Group, this film is a classic western film for kids with a twist… zombies! Set in the Arizona Territory, circa 1873, it is the story of a group of disparate people who band together to survive in a world gone mad. With a cast of unique and engaging actors (including our friend Lee Whitestar), zombies, and the back drop of Arizona's Sonoran Desert, this film is very entertaining. Learn more and watch the trailer at www.CowboyZombiesFilm.com.

Movies filmed in Yuma

Movie Posters on display.

Movie Poster from Cowboy Zombies.

Over the years, the historic Coronado Motor Hotel has been honored to accommodate a number of celebrities including: Tom Mix who won an Oscar for his role as Father O'Malley in 'Going my Way'; actor, USO and Oscar host Bing Crosby, Hattie McDaniel who won an Oscar for her supporting role as Mammy in 'Gone with the Wind', Bounty Hunter's Duane Lee "Dog" Chapman, Sr., and musician Collin Raye. Our on-site restaurant, the Yuma Landing, has a large display of historic photos of Yuma, including its rich film history.

In April 2014, as part of Yuma’s Centennial Celebration, the Coronado Motor Hotel was proud to sponsor the showing of ‘The Getaway’ in the ‘Made in Yuma Movie Marathon’. In January 2015, an Epic Star Wars Gathering was filmed in our nearby Imperial Sand Dunes, and we were happy to have some of the crew stay at the hotel and dine in the Yuma Landing Bar & Grill.

Have fun piecing together a picture of them in the jigsaw puzzle below, and later, watch their youtube video here.

Enjoy this online jigsaw puzzle of an Epic Star Wars Gathering.

To make the online jigsaw puzzle below, click on Ghost Icon in the lower task bar to make your workspace. You can click on Image to see the picture better. Click to make the image Fullscreen to make the puzzle easier. Click and drag the pieces where you want them and use your arrow keys or mouse roller to rotate the pieces. Have fun!

Epic Star Wars Gathering

Epic Star Wars Gathering

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