Where Was To Hell And Back Filmed? World War II As It Happened!


War heroes are made on battlefields. While we sleep comfortably under our blankets every night, a soldier somewhere spends his night wide awake. We see a glimpse of that in the movie To Hell And Back. A movie that celebrates one of the most decorated soldiers in US Army history. Today, we will also tell you where was To Hell And Back filmed, so be with us!

The movie has been a labor of love as it is based on the autobiography written by Audie Murphy. Retelling his stories of what went down in World War II, Murphy takes us through everything he went through. Known as the most decorated soldier in US Army, To Hell And Back is an eye-opener for sure!

So where was To Hell And Back filmed? Filming of the movie was divided between real locations and the studios. Most of the movie was shot in Universal Studios in California. The real-life locations used were: Fort Lewis, Yakima Training Center, and Oak Creek Wildlife Area. All of which are located in and around Washington.

It is always interesting to know the real-life filming locations of old movies. Knowing where history in cinema was made, has a different feeling attached to it! If things like these interest you, then we suggest checking out where Apollo 13 and This is 40 were filmed!

The Plot Of To Hell And Back | What Is The Movie About

So before we move on to find out where was To Hell And Back filmed let’s see what the movie is all about. As mentioned, To Hell And Back is based on a book of the same name. And just like the book, the movie also follows the life of Audie Murphy.

Murphy is recruited into the army after being rejected several times. Due to his small stature and baby face, he is called an infant by his fellow soldiers. All this soon changes, as he proves his worth through his heroics in Germany.

Murphy single-handedly saves his entire company from a platoon of Nazi forces. With no regard for his own life, Murphy is said to have turned back an assault. On his return, the government showers Murphy with countless awards and honors him with the Medal of honor too. 

Where Was To Hell And Back Filmed | All The Locations You Need To Know!

It is not the awards and the honors that make To Hell And Back worth watching. But the retelling of the real-life incidents of Audie Murphy. We see how he struggled after the loss of some of his men, and how he rose the ranks in the army.

So, where was To Hell And Back filmed? Check out the awesome locations that we mention below to get an idea!

Universal Studios – 100 Universal City Plaza, Universal City, California, USA

Where Was To Hell And Back Filmed? World War II As It Happened!

Since most of the filming of movies in the fifties was done on sets, this one is no surprise either. Filming for the majority of To Hell And Back took place in Universal Studios in a controlled environment. After Universal acquired the rights to make the movie, work on making the set look like battlefields had already begun.

The movie went on to be so good, that it was Universal’s most successful movie ever made! That is until Stephen Spielberg came up with Jaws and broke the record. The filming in the studio for To Hell And Back involved using a cinemascope. Which made the movie look different than others at the time. 

Initially, Audio Murphy didn’t want to play his own role, but after being persuaded by the Universal Studios officials, he gave in. He filmed the movie in the studios and a 30-something-old Murphy played the role of himself, but a decade younger.

Fort Lewis, Washington, USA

Where Was To Hell And Back Filmed? World War II As It Happened!

Next, filming for To Hell And Back moved to Fort Lewis. The area is a restricted military base that falls under the Armed wing of the military. It is located just a few miles south of Washington and is currently the home to I Corps and 62nd Airlift Wing. 

It was decided that several army generals would play their real roles in, To Hell And Back. But that plan was changed and actors were hired. Filming took place in Fort Lewis military base for a few days after which it was moved to a different location.

Yakima River, Washington, USA

Where Was To Hell And Back Filmed? World War II As It Happened!

Down south, Yakima River in Washington has also been used as a filming location for To Hell And Back. the battle scenes, where Murphy single-handedly holds off German forces is shot here. The Yakima River is also the place where the Yakima Training Centre is situated. 

Gun battles, tank scenes, and several action sequences ended up being shot there. What we see in the movie as Sicily and Germany are actually the practice ranges in Yakima Training Centre. The vast firing range gave more than enough options to the crew to modify and adjust the location according to their needs.

Choosing this location was an intentional move by director Jesse Hibbs as well. First, it proved to be a free advertisement for the range. Giving the army enough eyeballs for more recruitments to take place. It was also an instrument of catharsis for Murphy as he re-enacted the very scenes he experienced on the battlefield.

Oak Creek Wildlife Area, Naches, Washington, USA

Where Was To Hell And Back Filmed? World War II As It Happened!

Lastly, To Hell And Back was also filmed in the wildernesses of Oak Creek Wildlife Area in Washington. We see as Murphy goes on for deployment his first posting is in North Africa. Which meant having to recreate a lot of wilderness.

This was done at Oak Creek Wildlife Area. The place is known for its rugged mountains, harsh winters, and overall arid climate. This was a perfect stand-in for the African terrain and served as the filming location for the region.

Final Words

We hope now you know where was To Hell And Back filmed! The movie is more than just a classic. It serves as a reminder of the sacrifices the American troops made in the War. It is also a reminder of the eventual triumph of the allied forces and the defeat of the Nazis.

If you were impressed by the filming locations of classic movies, then we have more for you! You should check out where The Sacketts and Crossfire Trail have been filmed! To 80s classics that will blow your mind! If you have a favorite movie or show you want to be covered, then drop a comment down below!

Was To Hell And Back a true story?

Yes, To Hell And Back is based on a true story.

Where to watch To Hell And Back for free?

You can watch To Hell And Back for free on third-party websites like divicast and 123movies.

Who wrote To Hell And Back?

Audie Murphy himself wrote the book To Hell And Back along with a ghost-writer

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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