Berkeley has served as a film location for many cinema classics.

Premiere Film Location

Due to a high volume of inquiries we require 5 business days to process film permit requests. Please contact Jeffrey with any and all film related questions. Thank you!

Jeffrey Church, Film Commissioner

There are many attributes the City of Berkeley and University have to offer the film industry. Location professionals scout and admire our architectural buildings and residences, varied landscapes and views from Tilden Regional Park to the Berkeley Marina, tree-lined shopping districts and neighborhoods.

Research shows the “first” documented movie to film in Berkeley was back in 1919. In 1967, Embassy Pictures came to Berkeley to shoot several scenes for the Academy Award-winning The Graduate. George Lucas came to Berkeley in 1970 and filmed up at the Lawrence Hall of Science for his first movie, THX-1138. More recently, Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner was filmed in part at the Berkeley Marina (2007) and 2024 Academy Awards Best Picture Oppenheimer included numerous scenes filmed in Berkeley. We’ve also served as backdrop to numerous commercials, photo shoots, documentaries and television shows including the pilot episode of Parenthood.

In addition to great locations, Berkeley offers an impressive crew base, as well as support companies including post production sound, aerial photography, film editing facilities, photo labs, recording studios, animation and visual effects and sound design.

The Berkeley Film Office was formed in 1994 to act as a liaison between the community and film industry. In 1999, the Film Office became a “one-stop-shop” for permit coordination and logistics to provide a “film friendly” environment for all.