July 19, 2018
Bryce Canyon National Park and its surrounding areas are so beautiful and unique that movie producers can’t stay away. Throughout history, this hoodoo-filled area has been a movie hot spot. Here are six films in which Bryce Canyon has been the scenic backdrop.
“The Deadwood Coach” (1924)
“The Deadwood Coach” was Hollywood’s first production in Utah. It was filmed in Cedar City, Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon National Park. An article written by Dan Clark, cinematographer, in the October 1924 AmCin described filming in Bryce Canyon as “gorges, pinnacles and minarets of all descriptions.” The terrain required the crew, along with lead actor Tom Mix, “to build stairs and trails down the walls of this canyon in order to enter it to photograph.”
In the “Bonneville”, three women decide to honor the last request of one of the woman’s recently-deceased husband to scatter his ashes at places they visited throughout their twenty-year-long marriage. Along the way, the women visit Bryce Canyon National Park and Lake Powell among other Utah sites.
“Thunderhead – Son of Flicka” (1945)
“Thunderhead: Son of Flicka” is a 1945, Technicolor, family film directed by Louis King. It is a sequel to the 1943 film “My Friend Flicka,” which was remade in 2006 as “Flicka.” This western feature is about a boy who tries to train Thunderhead to be a champion race horse. Filming many outdoor western scenes with Bryce Canyon National Park as the backdrop.
“Sergeants 3” (1962)
“Sergeants 3” was a popular film featuring classic actors such as Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin. Based in 1870, this motion picture is about three brawling U.S. Cavalry sergeants stationed in Indian Territory. Bryce Canyon is the great western scenery, as the characters Mike and Chip strives to prevent Larry from fulfilling his decision to leave the Army and marry his love, Amelia Parent.
“Outlaw Trail: The Treasure of Butch Cassidy” (2006)
The movie “Outlaw Trail: The Treasure of Butch Cassidy” is loosely based on the legends of Butch Cassidy. Three boy scouts, one a great-nephew of Butch Cassidy, and a girlfriend hunt for the famous outlaw’s lost treasure in Utah. Bryce Canyon National Park along with multiple other Utah locations were used in the filming process.
Other popular movies filmed in Bryce Canyon Country include Snowfire (1957), The Dude Ranger (1934), Soldiers Three (1951), Arizona Bound (1927), The Big Cat (1949) and The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing (1973). As Hollywood has shown us time and time again, Bryce Canyon with its bright orange, white, red and yellow hoodoos make a fantastic movie setting.