Where Was The Professionals Filmed? Lancaster’s Exciting Western Drama Flick!!


If you’re in the mood to watch a classic film starring Burt Lancaster, then you’ve come to the right place! As today I will acquaint you with a western drama film, The Professionals, featuring Lancaster. And later let you in on where was The Professionals filmed.

The American western film, The Professionals, released in 1966, was inspired by a novel by Frank O’Rourke published two years prior to the film. Director Richard Brooks, who also pitched as a screenwriter in this film, presents the story of J.W. Grant, an affluent Texan rancher who is shown to appoint four outlaws to save his abducted wife, from a Mexican gangster.

The Professionals, went on to earn a couple of nominations, including 3 at the Oscars. Commercially this action-adventure flick, performed decently as well, grossing over $19 million in total box office collections. Now before I give you an overview of this film, let’s find out where was The Professionals filmed. So that you can enjoy the beautiful filming locations of this western adventure film.

Where Was The Professionals Filmed? Let’s Know This Western Flick Closely!

Director Richard Brooks, initially wanted to shoot The Professionals entirely in Mexico. But as the filming budget was low, Richard was advised by the other production members to film in America. Thus, the states of California and Arizona were selected as prime locations for filming. Although the production unit also added Nevada to the list of potential filming locations.

The principal photography began towards the end of October 1965 and was completed in 4 months. The filming schedule was delayed due to the mismanagement of the crew during the course of filming in Nevada. Now without waiting any longer, let’s discuss in-depth, where was The Professionals filmed, and find out more about the specific shooting sites.

California | USA

The production unit readily began shooting the opening sequence of the film, after reaching the city of Burbank in California. The Columbia/Warner Bros. Ranch, located at 411 North Hollywood Way was used to shoot the scenes of the town, where we see the character of J.W. Grant. After this, the production unit moved to the Death Valley National Park, to shoot the sequence featuring Rico and his companions in the film. 

Arizona | USA

The sequence in the film, which depicts Henry and Bill hiding along with other men, inside a camp, was filmed near the Cabeza Prieta Mountains in Arizona. The production unit took several other exterior shots of the Paiute Wilderness Area and Galiuro Mountains, to showcase the journey of Rico and his men from Texas to Mexico. Filming lasted for about a week or so at this location before the crew moved on to capture the remaining sequences.

Nevada | USA

As soon as the production unit reached the state of Nevada, they ran into a huge problem. A significant member of the filming crew was injured while shooting a pivotal sequence, which delayed the entire filming schedule. However, after replacing the said member of the unit, the shooting resumed. The area near Valley of Fire State Park, located near Route 169, Overton was used to portray the backdrop of Mexico in the film. While a few other sequences featured the outdoor shots of Eagletail Mountains and Lake Mead, which are also located in Nevada.

After the majority of the outdoor scenes were captured, the production unit booked a renowned studio in Las Vegas and filmed the rest of the interior sequences there. Now, it’s time for us to finally discuss the plot of The Professionals so that you can get a better understanding of the actual storyline. And in the meantime, you can check out The Last Outlaw, The Minute You Wake Up Dead and Memento which are equally engaging, if not more.

Plot Of The Professionals | What’s It About

Where Was The Professionals Filmed? Lancaster’s Exciting Western Drama Flick!!

The film begins by introducing us to the character of J.W. Grant, an established businessman from Texas who is shown to be heavily distressed after Maria, his wife, goes missing. Later in the film, Maria gets abducted by a gang of Mexican criminals, operated by an ex-revolutionary.

Soon after, Grant appoints Henry Rico, a weapon specialist, along with Hans and Bill to help him to retrieve Maria from the clutches of Jesus Raza. Rico reluctantly agrees to take up the contract after asking Grant to pay extra for the fourth man, Jake. As his expertise in detonation and explosives would be highly required to pull this job.

Midway through the film, when Rico and his companions reach the lair of Raza, near the Mexican border. They are surprised to find Maria in perfectly good condition. After an exhilarating action sequence, Rico and his men successfully “free” Maria from Raza, and prepare to bring her back to Mr. Grant. 

Later along the way, Maria is shown to express her disgust for Mr. Grant, as she confesses to Rico that she truly loves Jesus. In the final quarter of the film, after Rico brings back Maria and Raza to Texas, Mr. Grant readily approaches to kill Raza but is intervened by his companions of Rico. The credits roll as Henry realizes that he was working for the wrong man, and allows Raza to take Maria back to Mexico.

Final Words

Ok guys, now that you’ve gone through the plot of the film and also know that, where was The Professionals filmed. I hope you’ve enjoyed the read and found what you were looking for. Don’t forget to mention your thoughts, in the comment section below. And be sure to check out other amazing articles on Viebly.

Who Are The Cast Members Of The Film The Professionals?

The cast of the film The Professionals includes Burt Lancaster, Lee Marvin, Robert Ryan, Woody Strode, Jack Palance and Ralph Bellamy along with some other actors.

Who Is The Cinematographer Of The Film The Professionals?

Conrad L. Hall is the cinematographer of the film The Professionals.

What Is The Rating Of The Film The Professionals?

The film The Professionals has a PG-13 rating.

What Is The Runtime Of The Film The Professionals?

1h 57m is the runtime of the film The Professionals.

Who Is The Music Director Of The Film The Professionals?

Maurice Jarre is the music director of the film The Professionals.

Who Is The Producer Of The Film The Professionals?

Richard Brooks is the producer of the film The Professionals, who also happens to be the director.

Ujwal Mattoo
Ujwal Mattoo
With full journalism and half engineering background, Ujwal has hands in both the tech and creative fields. He is a film enthusiast who loves all kinds of genres. As much as he enjoys watching movies, he is always amused to know more and write about the locations to feed his hunger for traveling. In this world of fictional louds, he voices his opinions softly! He is either busy writing or playing with Milo, his dog!


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