Image credit: Deseret News/ Paramount

Nearly 800 movies and TV series have been filmed in Utah, making the state a thriving community for filmmakers. Wikipedia even has a page for movies filmed in Utah. Left: Ben Lomond Peak in Ogden.

Paramount logo
Image credit: Deseret News/ Paramount

The Paramount logo was possibly inspired by the Ben Lomond Peak in Ogden.

W.W. Hodkinson opened one of America's first theaters in 1907 in Ogden, and later went on to form Paramount. Hodkinson used the mountain in Utah for his logo.

Read more.

photo: Ben Lomond Peak, Ogden

Photo credit: twm1340 via

Movies filmed in Utah began with westerns, like El Dorado, The Searchers, Rio Grande, and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

John Wayne often found himself acting in southern Utah.

Utah government incentives
Photo credit: Curtis Fry via wikimedia commons

Utah has was is called the Utah Motion Picture Incentive Program (MPIP).

According to the programs website, "approved productions will be rebated 15-25 percent on every dollar spent in the State of Utah."

For 15 percent, the production must spend $200,000 in the state. For 25 percent, it must spend $1 million.

These numbers should give a rough idea about how much money the state makes on movies filmed here.

Read the policies

Financial Impact
Image credit: ET and Elliot via

Since 2004 95 film projects have received state funding.

Reports estimate that 5,000 production jobs have been created as a result, and that the projects have left $178 million in the state.

left: Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade was filmed partly in southern Utah, in Arches National Park. Part of Back to the Future III was also filmed in southern Utah.

Films in Moab
Photo credit: Deseret News

Dozens of films were shot in Moab, such as:

-The Greatest Story Ever Told
-Against a Crooked Sky
-Thelma and Louise
-Vertical Limit
-Austin Powers 3

The films entertain, but also are great advertisements for tourism to Utah.

Image credit:

Footloose was filmed primarily in Utah, namely in Provo, Lehi and Payson.

Utah residents were used as extras and some even had speaking parts.

Dumb and Dumber
Image Credit:

The movie "Dumb and Dumber" used locations all around Utah.

According to one source , parts of the movie were filmed in Orem, Provo, Park City, Sandy, Lakepoint, and Salt Lake City.

left: A Dumb and Dumber scene shot at the Salt Lake City airport.

The Sandlot
Image source: Googlemaps

The classic movie "The Sandlot" was filmed in Salt Lake City.

Read more.

left: The Sandlot as it stands today, on Glenrose Dr. in Salt Lake City.

Star Trek, 2008
Photo source: wikimedia commons

Spock's homeland Vulcan was shot in Emery County, in Eastern Utah.

The area is called the San Rafael Swell.

According to a article, the county saw $100,000 in direct benefit, but expects interest in the area to peak even more.

Read more

Mission Impossible II
Image source: isythica via

Moab was the location for the crazy opening scene of Mission Impossible II, where Tom Cruise is free-climbing and hangs with one hand out over a precipice.

A handy piece of publicity for tourism in southern Utah.

Pirates of the Caribbean III
Image credit: bermudagirl50 via

Parts of this film were shot on the Bonneville Salt Flats.

left: Johnny Depp acting out on the Bonneville Salt Flats.

127 Hours
Image Credit: Foxsearchlight via

127 Hours is not just a popular movie. According to the Utah Office of Tourism Managing Director Leigh Von der Esch,"there is no bigger billboard than a movie."

It helps that 127 hours showcases the beauty of southern Utah like few other films have.

The actual events depicted, and the filming itself, occured in the Canyonlands National Park.

There are already 127 Hours tours. See here.

Sundance Film Festival
Image source: wikimedia commons

This festival started in 1978 in Salt Lake City.

Since its beginning, it has become a central hub for independent filmakers trying to get their movies publicized.

It was reported that Sundance brought the state over $70 million in 2011.

John Carter
Image credit: Walt Disney UK via

John Carter hasn't done well in the box office, but Utah tourism officials hope it brings in some tourism. It was filmed in Kanab.

According to the New York Times, the state of Utah even helped pay for the movie with incentives. State officials told the New York Times that $20 million in economic benefit and 275 jobs were brought in with the movie.

Read the article

High School Musical
Image credit: Google maps

As many know, this movie was filmed at East High School in Salt Lake City, and in the auditorium of Murray High School.

left: East High School

TV Shows
Photo credit: Deseret News

A number of TV series have been filmed in Utah. One example is "Touched By an Angel," which had nine seasons filmed entirely in Utah.

According to, each finished episode brought $2-3 million into the state.

Touched by an Angel star Roma Downey waves to shcool children in the State Senate gallery while being honored Feb 27th, 2003.

LDS Church Films
Photo credit: the Deseret News

It shouldn't be forgotten that the LDS Church has filmed numerous productions in Utah, which has an economic impact.

left: Construction for the massive Jerusalem set in Goshen, used for the LDS Church's recent New Testament films.

New Movies Being Filmed in Utah
Photo source: reported that 8 new movie projects that will be filmed in Utah.

One is The Lone Ranger, which is being made by Silver Bullet Productions, part of Walt Disney. It stars Johnny Depp, and will also be filmed in New Mexico.