/News 18.08.21


US audiences have had their first glimpse at Melbourne doubling for Los Angeles in the new trailer for NBC’s sci-fi drama La Brea, which premieres on September 28.

The 10-part series follows a family that is torn apart when a massive sinkhole opens in the middle of Los Angeles, separating mother and son from father and daughter. When part of the family finds themselves in an unexplainable primeval world, alongside a disparate group of strangers, they must work to survive and find a way back home.

Melbourne was the location of choice for creator, writer, and showrunner David Appelbaum (The Enemy Within) and the series’ producers with its wide, palm-tree lined streets, similar to Los Angeles. They also found the prehistoric-looking locations the script required close to downtown Melbourne.

“La Brea bounces from modern day Los Angeles to 10,000 BC and back again, and Melbourne and regional Victoria have the versatility to do both,” said Location Supervisor J.C. Strouts.

La Brea filming in Port Melbourne. Photos Getty Images and Media Mode.
La Brea filming in Port Melbourne. Photos Getty Images and Media Mode.

In the bayside suburb of Port Melbourne, the main street was closed to for 72 hours and transformed into a Los Angeles suburb for the key stunt sequence when the sinkhole opens up on a busy road.

“For the Los Angeles scenes, Melbourne is doubling for the Hollywood Hills, Wilshire Boulevard, Silver Lake and more,” said J.C.

“And only an hour from downtown Melbourne, Mount Macedon and Hanging Rock provide the show with a plethora of natural locations for the scenes set in 10,000 BC,” he said.

Hanging Rock. Photo Thomas Breakwell. Courtesy of Macedon Ranges Shire Council.
Hanging Rock. Courtesy of Visit Victoria.
Hanging Rock. Courtesy of Visit Victoria.

Universal Television and Keshet Studios are producing the series, with production in Melbourne being overseen by NBCU-backed Victorian company, Matchbox Pictures, and local producer Naomi Cleaver.

La Brea comes hot on the heels of another highly anticipated Melbourne-made drama Clickbait, which premieres on Netflix on August 25 and was also produced by Matchbox Pictures alongside Tony Ayres Productions (TAP) and Heyday Television.

La Brea was attracted to undertake principal photography, post-production and visual effects in Melbourne through Film Victoria’s Victorian Screen Incentive. The production was also supported by the Australian Government’s Location Incentive program.

Want to find out more about the Victorian Screen Incentive?
Contact Film Victoria’s Manager of Production Attraction & Support Joe Brinkmann at [email protected]

Featured top image credit: Photo: Sarah Enticknap/NBC.