Our Visit to Wilmington for One Tree Hill Filming/Locations

Ok, this is going to be a very long post. I know most of you have seen pictures of all the filming locations and probably have been to a lot of them and even have been extras. So I apologize some of this is old hat to you guys, but for us, this was our first time, we’re excited and as always, we want to share it with other fans! So click below to read the whole thing! It’s very picture-heavy so give it some time to load.

IMG_4052 Unfortunately Heather and I could only go for one day. Heather has to work tomorrow morning so we left last night (Thursday 4-10-2008) and came back this evening (Friday). We didn’t get to the hotel until 11pm after we got lost a bit on the way to the hotel (Hampton Inn). We finally got settled in and found it to be a very nice hotel. Not quite as expensive as the Hilton and not downtown but we had a nice big room, free breakfast and free WIFI. Since this was a last minute trip we also had to share a King bed instead of our own since they had no more two bed rooms. Hey..we’re sisters, it’s ok. (“heading east” – left)

IMG_4064We were up before 7 and tried to get on the road as fast as we could. The filming was supposed to be 8-12 but it was already 8 by the time we left. And guess what? My car wouldn’t start! My battery was dead! We were shocked and had no idea what to do. Thankfully we found out they had a maintenance guy on staff with jumper cables. Whew! Anyway, we got to the cemetery (Bellview Cemetery) and they already had everything set up. We were anxious to see who was going to be in the scene since it listed 2 cast members and we know that Lucas and Peyton spend a lot of time visiting Keith and Peyton’s mom. We also figured there was a chance it was Dan. And lo and behold, after a few minutes we spotted Paul with a brown shirt and jeans on. (Hampton Inn Deluxe Room – right)

 

 

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(see him there in the middle-left of the picture)

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(you can see all the behind the scenes stuff. the table in the middle of the picture was the table with breakfast on it from what we could tell. i know, exciting stuff there)

So I don’t completely understand all “the rules” for what we can and can not post but just for the record, none of these were taken when they were actually filming. This next one is quite interesting though because you can see in the trees in the middle of the picture a crane holding a tombstone with the name Dan Scott on it. As we said earlier in our report, the scene was very simple and involved Dan standing at the end of a plot and watching his own tombstone being lowered. They did this several times. From what we could tell, he did not talk at all and didn’t really move either. Exciting stuff, huh??

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IMG_4084IMG_4085Well, it wasn’t the most exciting scene ever but it was cool to see what all went into just a few second worth of the show. It is really a lot of work and a lot of people that go into to making this show we love. I definitely came out with a lot more respect for the crew. By 10:00 they were all heading out though so it was short-lived. We didn’t get to speak to anyone as we were across the street trying to stay out of the way. I hate I forgot my Dad’s bigger lens or I could have gotten closer. But there wasn’t a whole lot going on and what you’re seeing in these pictures is basically all we saw. I’m still a little confused why it says 2 cast members because I personally didn’t see anyone else. We thought maybe we saw James but we didn’t see him filming anything if that was in fact him. There were 6 other fans watching the filming and if you guys are reading this, let us know if you have more info! (cool trees next to the cemetery – left and right.)

So we headed downtown to catch some of the festival action and then did our filming locations tour. So here we go with that….

Clothes Over Bros was the first place besides the cemetery we went. And, honestly, we were shocked. We really didn’t realize that it stayed set up this way. All the clothes and everything was still in place. They had some blankets thrown over the couches but besides that, it looked like a real store that was just closed.

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(on opposite corner with black awning)

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(front view – the front door has Karen’s Cafe painted on the front on a piece of wood)

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Next we headed to see the gym and where they film a lot of the outside school scenes where they’re walking down that corridor. You’ll recognize it in a second. This is actually called the Schwartz Center and is sitting beside something that has a maintenance garage in it. The parking lot is all for faculty and staff. It pretty much looks nothing like it does on TV except the columns are very recognizable. I was surprised to see it seemed so much smaller than it does on TV.

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Next up was TRIC. This one was exciting for some reason. I wanted to go up and see if the whole club was up there and I assume it is. I’m sure if you’ve been an extra before you know where they film the club scenes…so fill me in! This one was a little surprising as well as TRIC is just part of a bigger building that is used for other business(es).

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Next up was the river court. Heather was pretty excited to see that. We had seen it from Water Street on the other side of the river but we took the time to go over to see it in person. Something sort of cool though is that when we pulled up, several of what we’re pretty sure was the crew members were there at the court. When I saw them, some of them had stacks of papers with them and they were headed back to their vans. You can see them driving off here. I thought it was a little strange that they would go there since I’m guessing they know what the place looks like but I guess some things are easier to plan in person. Who knows.

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(view from the parking lot.)

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(walking up to it. The lights are in the middle of the picture. The basketball goals were not up)

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(looking across the river into Downtown Wilmington)

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(this is the view we normally don’t see. this is actually just some concrete in the field next to the NC Battleship. much, much less glamorous than you think.)

 

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(view from standing on the court looking to the left down the river)’

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(this is taken from Downtown)

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(also taken from Downtown. You can see the big tree at the court in the middle of the picture and you can see the Battleship to the right there.)

OK, wow, this is getting long!! Next was Brooke’s house and the famous red door. People really live here and in fact, the pizza delivery guy came as soon as we took the picture.

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OK, next is Nathan/Deb/Dan’s house. This house who has “real” owners was actually part of the Garden Tour for the NC Azalea Festival. You can see the girls dressed in their hoop skirts in the pictures. Someone please tell me their names (belles?) and the history on that if you know. We saw them all day all around the festival. Anyway, you could pay $20 a ticket to go tour the backyard gardens but this is really the only house we were interested in so we didn’t want to spend the money. Anyway, we got the front of it.

 

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Peyton’s house was next. Honestly, this house was a lot smaller than I imagined. And the grass patch in the front is smaller too. Did the bushes change or something? I’m pretty sure Brooke and Peyton fought in that front lawn and it just didn’t seem big enough to do it right there.

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Front of Peyton’s

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Side of Peyton’s

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(back of Peyton’s)

At this point we went to see Keith’s Body Shop but the camera flaked on me and I couldn’t get a picture. It looked like an absolutely normal body shop. Bigger building but smaller parking lot than I imagined.

Next was Karen and Lucas’s house. This house was WAY smaller and more rundown than I thought (don’t mean any disrespect to the family that lives there!!). Just saying it’s different than I thought. You can see Lucas’s bedroom door to the right side of the house.

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(side of the house. that window would be Lucas’s room)

Next is the bridge from the opening. The bridge is actually downtown but a little hidden a few streets down. I imagined it out in the country somewhere but it’s right downtown with everything else.

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(just a cool picture i took on the bridge)

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And lastly we took some time to shop downtown. Glad we did too because we found CD Alley, Max’s record store, with the help of one of the vendors. It wasn’t listed on OTHFans.com’s map so I was happy to find that. It looked EXACTLY like it does on the show. That was the one filming location that I felt was the most authentic.

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And lastly, here’s a general picture of Water and Market right downtown. CD Alley is a couple stores up the street there on the right. The boardwalk and river are right behind us.

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I’d like to give a big thanks to OTHFans.com and their filming locations map. We’d have been lost without that!! Like I mentioned, the only thing that I think may have been missing was the record store. Also, we kept driving around looking for the church from Lucas and Lindsey’s wedding but we never did. If anyone has that info, I’d be curious to know where it was to see if we might have seen it and not realized it. Oh, and we were curious about Nathan and Haley’s house from this season but didn’t see any info about that.

I really fell in love with Wilmington even on a such a short visit. Downtown is beautiful and very unique. I would love to be able to spend a few days just enjoying the city. I can see why many of them have houses there!

In closing, I’d just like to say if you EVER get a chance to do this, do it!! My advice is to plan on being there on a Saturday so you can do the studio tour which we did not get to do. I would also try to plan a day when they are filming (some good scenes where people are actually talking and there is more than one person LOL) and see if you can be an extra. I wish we could have seen or met one of the core cast members but it just didn’t happen.

If you have gotten this far, give yourself a pat on the back! Whew! I think blogging this took longer than the actual trip!

 

Leave a Reply

  1. Oh! I also wanted to ask what airport is the correct one/closest to hotel etc? Thanks soo soo much!

  2. hello!!!!! i can’t believe it! it’s great! i’m planning to go next year, i’m really exited! as you have more experience i want to ask you if i would be able to visit all during 3 days. because that are the days i ‘m going to stay in wilmington. please answer to me to flavia.ugarte@hotmail.com!!!!! thank you for the information!

  3. Thank you so much for these pics! I’m a huge fan of OTH, but it’s gonna take a while before I get to go and see all those places, because I live in Finland. But I know that someday I will go and see that all!

  4. Hey if you get to go again, go on a Friday or Saturday night and go to Blue Post Billards. It’s off Water street but up in an alley. Some of the cast usually hang out there. Or you can check some other bars downtown. That would be your best chance to run into them.

  5. My family and I just came back from Wilmington. We were there for4 days and it was amazing!! We were able to see all the places you posted and then some! We were also able to meet 6 members of the cast at a local walmart!! We plan on going back again real soon!! If you havent been there before it is a must see place to visit!!

  6. Hi. I am making the trip to Wilmington next week and am trying to map out directions to all of the tourists sites and I wanted to know if you could tell me the addresses of these locations it or tell me where you found all of them? I am having some trouble so if you could help me that would be amazing! Thanks! – devin

  7. You can actually take a tour of the sets they use. They do the tours on Saturday and Sunday at 12 noon and 2 pm at Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington. Most of the inside shots especially of houses are done on the set and not in the actual houses so you get to see the inside of the characters houses on the set and you get to walk through them and stand in the actual rooms where they film. When I was there about a month ago and went to the tour I got to see Nathan and Haleys house and walk through it, they actually have a pool behind it so the backyard scenes with the pool are filmed on set even though it looks like it is filmed outside somewhere. They have the backyard set up in the studio exactly like it is on the show, but it looks much smaller. They said it was getting really hard to travel back and forth to films scenes in Nathan and Haleys backyard so they just built it there to use. I also walked through Brookes beach house, Peytons recording studio Red Bedroom Records and caught a glimpse of the set for Lucas’s house. I dont think the tour changes very often at all so if you went within the next year or so you would proabably see the same things I did. It was very cool to stand where the actors stand while they film and also to learn a few cool things about how they make the sets seem like real home. I would recommed the Screen Gems tour to anyone who is a huge fan!!! I also went to all the places in and around Wilmington that they used. The road beside Orton Plantation where they filmed Weddings and stuff is gorgeous and its not hard to find the spot where Peytons car broke down. The Plantation is currently closed for renovations so you cant go see the places they filmed the wedding scenes and used for Andys yard either which was kind of disappointing. I would have liked to have seen Orton anyway just because it was so pretty. Airlie gardens where they filmed Nathan and haleys wedding is part of Orton so it is also closed. Hope this helps some!

  8. Hey I dont know if you are still on here but I am trying to organise a trip to Wilmington and would love to get in touch with you to talk about your experience of the One Tree Hill places. I hope you get this. Please reply.

  9. Lyndsay,
    I am still on here if you would like to ask me some questions about Wilmington and OTH places. I’ve been about 8 times, my husband and I vacation there at least once a year, and I always make him go with me to see OTH places! If you want to talk or have any questions I can answer I would be more than happy to help! I love going and seeing the places myself so I would love to help you get the most out of your trip! You can email me personally instead of using this thread just because it will be easier to just email back and forth than to use this page and post a new thread everytime. My email is ksmith6708@gmail.com.

  10. Hi, thanks sooo much for posting this, i am going for my 21st birthday as im a die hard OTH fan lol. I can tell this is a small town, but how do you find the locations of the places? Is there addresses listed somewhere or do you just drive around looking. Thanks, Ashley

  11. Hi, I am hoping to take my wife on our honeymoon she wants to go to new york for a few days and I would love to organise a trip for a few days to the area of one tree hill> I made her wait nearly a year for this honeymoon I want to totally surprise with this. So for anyone that can spare a few minutes to help . we are travelling from Ireland and fly directly to new york. Now I am not the best at geography but how or where do I go from there. I want to get her the tour and if I could oganise here to visit the sets etc. .if you can help that would be great, briansammin@gmail.com

  12. Ashley,
    I have a list of tons of places with addresses. It is a small town but there are some places that you have to drive a little bit to see and a few of the locations are in Wrightsville and Carolina Beaches which are towns right outside Wilmington. Wrightsville is about a 10 minute drive and Carolina Beach takes about 20-25 minutes depending on traffic and stuff. If you want to email me with any more questions you can. My email is ksmith6708@gmail.com and I can also give you a list of places and some tips for once you get down there.

  13. Hi, this is so awesome. i was just wonder if its possible/allowed to play basketball on the rivercourt, or in the “gym” ?

  14. Hi all, read almost all of the comments, there are so many! My husband and I are avid OTH-ers, and are planning a trip for our one year anniversary/honeymoon/valentines day this Feb 2011. Does anyone know when ( or where I can find) OTH filming schedules/days/locations? We will be there for a whole week. I have found the screen gems studio I think its called….but doesnt say much. I have several of the locations mapped, but have nothing on filming dates and such. Any help about the area, hotels, filming, and so on would be so greatly appreciated! Thank you in advance. You can email me, kattilac1@yahoo.com for all responses. Thanks!!!!

  15. You can play basketball at the River Court!! It is a public park and every time I have been there it has been pretty empty so I dont think you would have any trouble getting a game in while you were there!

  16. Could you tell me some of the addressespf their houses and the school and river court ?! I’m planning on going up there this summer and know the addresses to some of the things like Karens cafe and clothes over bros. But I would really like to get pictures in front of their houses !!

  17. HEYYYY!!! YOUR WEBSITE HAS BEEN SO HELPFUL WITH ALL THE INFORMATIONS, PICTURES, AND LINKS!!!! I AM GOING THERE IN MARCH AND I WILL BE THERE FOR ONE DAY, IS IT POSSIBLE TO DO EVERYTHING IN ONE DAY? I REALLY HOPE IT IS!!!!
    JUST A QUICK QUESTION HOW CSN YOU TELL WHEN THEY ARE FILMING CAUSE I WANT TO MEET THE ACTORS SOOO BADLY ESPECIALLY JAMES LAFFERTY<33333 , SO IF ANY ONE THAT HAS THE ANSWERS COULD POSSIBLY ANSWER THAT WOULD BE GREAT ANY INFORMATION WOULD HELLP:)!:)<3 THANSK AGAIN!:)

  18. @ Jenna – I don’t think it’s possible to see every single location in a day unless you start way before the sun comes up and don’t stop until way after the sun goes down. Personally.. it’s better to take your time because there’s a lot to absorb and some of the places are really hard to find! (I drove past Clothes Over Bros 4 times before having to ask someone where it was and that was the easiest one apparently.) As far as knowing when they film, contact Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington and ask. I know they are filming now, but I don’t know when they film the last episode. As far as wanting to see James and/or any other cast member.. your best bet is while in town (especially a Friday or Saturday night) is to go check out Blue Post Billards and just bar hop. They hang out a lot downtown (not sure if Joy will be out much in bars since she’s pregnant). Enjoy your trip to “Tree Hill”!!!!!! March is a perfect time to go.. beautiful weather.

  19. http://www.gracedowntown.net/home.html
    ^That’s the website for the church that all of the weddings are at…including Brooke and Julian’s. It’s called Grace United Methodist Church and the pastor there is my church’s former pastor and we’re very close with their family. When they filmed there he got to meet them and the cast members even donated toys for the Angel Tree (goes to children of inmates). They’re so sweet :) But the church is beautiful and everyone should go stop by!

  20. im a huge fan of tree hill and im looking into coming over to visit the homes and the river court, does anybody have any information for me to make my trip happen?
    thank you

  21. I just got back from NC, and had a blast. They will be easy to spot, if they are filming. White vans everywhere, spotlights, equip., traiors…its crazy!!! We actually ran in to Rob Buckley in a bar we were hanging out in. He made, MADE us play skee ball with him and his gf ( Tracy from last episode…Jena Sims) for 2 hours! He was super cool, down to earth, and a blast to hang out with. We also saw Chase and Mouth. There are lists all over of shooting locations. The ones we found were older ones, like Keiths, DS Motors, Peytons house, Lucas house, things like that. But places like Tric, COB is easy to find. COB is right downtown, the marquee is still there, with a fake ‘ karens cafe’ sign on the door. Good luck, hope you have fun!!!! ( if you have any ? email me if you like, kattilac1@yahoo.com

  22. hey guys, thank you so much for making this website!
    i just got back from Wilmington it was honestly amazing <3
    i went there on sunday and went to these locations Clothes over bros,
    Black cat shoppe (cd valley), Quinn james photography, Rivercourt, Brookes house,Felixs house, Tric, Brookes nyc apparnment, Blue post billards
    Naleys first date (riverwalk),Tree hill high ,Grace church, Haleys house ,Peytons house ,Screen gems studios and when i went there was no tours:( the tours are only on SATURDAYS! but while i was there i saw Julians truck and keiths suv, Peytons car (the comet) , and Haleys red car. But when i was there on the sunday i found a sign saying that they were filming on monday at clothes over bros so of course i had to come back to wilmington on monday!!!!
    so me and my mom drove back to wilmington monday morning and when went to clothes over bros and started to spot out the white trucks! if there are 'lightin rental trucks' then its them! so we waited there for an hour then a man told me that they were filming there somewhere else in the morning! so we drove there! they were filming in hue mCrea park, its where all the baseball scenes with Ian kellerman are filmed! so sophia bush and austin nichlos were filming a love scence in the park, it wa sooo cute<3
    after they were done we drove back to clothes over bros and watched haley filming a scence, it was her walking nito clothes over bros from outside! She even waved at mee ! it was truely an azming day<3

  23. My sisters and I are planning to take a week long trip their this summer. Are all the shops still up and are they still doing the tours on saturdays?? Thanks so much for the blog and the info. LOVE OTH!!!

  24. Does anyone have updated information on list Season 8 locations?? A lot of websites are great, just aren’t updated with addresses for the more recent seasons? Also, does anybody know where Naley’s first date took place on the riverwalk, like where that is? Or the restaurant that Peyton saw Ellie at in Season 3 and later on Brooke and Victoria went to? It is used kind of frequently… Thanks so much!!

  25. rachel- victoria and brooke go to The George its on the riverwalk
    128 south water street. nice place to go because of filming but was ridicioulusy expensive and horrible service my advice is to take pictures from the sidewalk and not to eat there.
    this website is whwat i used on my vaction just last week

    http://othforums.com/index.php?topic=46520.0

  26. Hayley- thanks so much! the vacation was great and your advice was really helpful :)

  27. Hello All,
    I am planning a trip to Willmington NC Aug 6th 2011 and any current info on ONE TREE HILL sites, places to stay near by? would be very helpful in planning my trip the best possible. I will only be there one day (so i want to see as much as possible) I leave Sunday mid day to Jacksonville NC to wait for my Nephews arrive from Afgahan!!!! I’m so excited :)
    Any info would be great appreciated
    Mavel

  28. hi, can u tell me where the location of the place lucas and peyton met, on the road near the river?? thanks so much x

  29. Im 15 and live in england and want to go to wilmington so bad! Im definately going but it sucks cus the studio tours and some of the locations like the rivercourt and clothes over bros might not be there because i can only go when im atleast 18 ( i want to go on my own so im not rushed!!) and it would have ended by then </3 I love one tree hill and im definately going!!

  30. Wow, 2 words great job! im from Chicago & im like a very BIG fan of OTH i def. enjoyed it… you explained it very well thank you…the homes, tric, river court, gym and cloths over Bro’s looks exactly the same… i def haave to visit it. .. season 9 is their last season and i def think they sd make a little event in Wilmington to all their fans so we can met them :) )

  31. I was wondering how to find the locations. I tried the links but no locations came up. Can you help??
    And this was great! I want to go myself!!

  32. This website is awesome! I am a huge oth fan and deeply saddened by them ending it :( I was a super huge fan of dawson’s creek as well. I have been thinking for some time about relocating there with my family from new jersey. I lived in nc for a couple of years in my teens but I was in fayetteville. How is the wilmington area? I have loved everything I’ve read about it or heard from friends who’ve visited it there. I am always open to everyones opinion of it and would definitely love feedback :) I would be moving there with my husband and 2 children (aged 6 and 1).

  33. I’m so sad that OTH is coming to an end :(
    i’ve been a dedicated fan since it was first aired in 2003.
    I am wondering if anyone knows or can find out if all the filming for the last season has been completed now or if they’re still filming it?
    Also I am wondering if anyone knows whether the set for OTH at Screen Gems where you can have tours of the sets there are still available? Will they still be set up and available to view even now that the show is ending?
    THANK YOU IN ADVANCE!
    :)

  34. Hmm is anyone else having problems with the images on this blog loading?
    I’m trying to figure out if its a problem on my end or if it’s the blog.
    Any responses would be greatly appreciated.

  35. Does anyone know if there is a way to access the rooftop where they filmed above Karen’s cafe with the water balloons and other scenes?

  36. you done a GREAT job showing off your pics and telling about your trip to Wilmington. OTH is still my favorite show and my husband and I watch it from beginning to end, every now and then, which ends up being about 3 or 4 episodes a night. Every time we watch is just like watching for the first time…can’t get enough of it and ABSOLUTELY love it. This is where I plan on going this summer for our vacation and now, THANKS TO YOU, I know what and where to look for places. This was really great and thanks for sharing! :)

  37. I wanted to go to Wilmington to watch filming SO bad and sadly I never got to do it :( I wonder if fans still visit to check out the existing locations or if the studio still has any of the sets…

  38. hey there! i am interested in road tripping to one tree hill’s filming areas, and I know that it has been quite some time since the show wrapped up, but I still want to make the trek from nj to nc. I loved the show and I am just curious about how you knew what places to go see because i can’t just type the “rivercourt” into mapquest. I don’t know what their actual names are called. I’m just curious as to how you got there and where you stayed. Thank you :)

  39. Hello there. We are a family from South Africa. My 19 year old daughter is a great fan of One Tree Hill. She has had a battle with tumours etc from age 10 and has had a tough time. I would like to visit USA for the sole purpose for her to see the film location and do the tours etc. Do you know of any motels, inns etc near the location that I can google and get prices for. Many thanks.Karen Fuller

  40. Ashley, I havent been to Wilmington since filming wrapped for OTH. I know places like the rivercourt and Clothes over Bro are no longer there. Well the building for COB will still be there it just wont look the same, That being said they did film a lot using the exterior of houses and such. I recommend checking out this website http://othforums.com/index.php?topic=46520.0 This has the complete list of address for all filming locations used for OTH. Wilmington in itself is a beautiful place to visit.