Here's where the opening credits for these 9 shows were filmed

Fantasy Island is a lot closer than we think.

Image: Google Maps

We've seen them hundreds of times, and know every lyric by heart. But do we know where our favorite opening credits were filmed?

Here's a look at nine unlikely locations featured in memorable opening credits sequences. 

1. Gilligan's Island

The passengers were going on a "three hour tour" in Hawaii, but the opening credits were actually filmed at the Alamitos Bay Marina in Long Beach, California. 

2. The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Mary Richards tosses her hat in the air at the Nicollet Mall in Minneapolis at its intersection with 7th Street. Today, you can find an 8-foot tall bronze statue of Mary Tyler Moore at that intersection — along with countless others mimicking that famous move. 

3. Welcome Back, Kotter

No one knows what happened to the original "Welcome" sign, but it was displayed on the Verrazano Bridge connecting Staten Island and Brooklyn in New York. The sign also gave borough president Sebastian Leone some surprising name recognition. 

4. The Bob Newhart Show

The opening credits show Dr. Robert Hartley crisscrossing downtown Chicago on his commute home from work, right by the Wrigley and Tribune buildings along the river. In one scene, he walks on a pedestrian bridge over Rush and Hubbard streets.

5. Laverne & Shirley

The sign "Welcome Milwaukee Visitors" welcomed viewers every week to Laverne & Shirley. The message appeared on the south side of Milwaukee City Hall, which was once the tallest inhabitable building in the United States. Unfortunately, the sign was removed in the 1980s due to costly maintenance. 

6. Fantasy Island

It turns out Fantasy Island wasn't on an island. Instead, Tattoo shouted "de plane, de plane!" from the bell tower of the Queen Anne cottage at the Los Angeles State & County Arboretum in Arcadia, California. 

7. The Andy Griffith Show

Mayberry, North Carolina, sure does look at lot like Los Angeles. That's because the opening credits for The Andy Griffith Show were filmed at Franklin Canyon Park in Beverly Hills, California. 

8. Cheers

Cheers used the Bull & Finch Pub for its exterior shots. It was renamed Cheers Beacon Hill after the extremely popular TV show in 2002. You can visit the bar at 84 Beacon Street in Boston. 

9. Taxi

The Queensboro Bridge, which connects Manhattan and Queens in New York, is the main star of Taxi's opening credits. If you've ever watched the credits carefully, the same shot is looped over and over until the taxi drives away.  

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6 Comments

kr68 14 months ago
Been to a couple of these. Also, been to 1049 Park Avenue in Manhattan. Home of Oscar and Felix.
John 17 months ago
Great memories, great shows, great actors. Great job!
robwayne 28 months ago
On Gilligan's Island- WRONG! The season 1 opener was shot in the Ala Wai Yacht Harbor in Honolulu, HI and on Kauai. (I live in Hawaii). The Minnow seen on the water in season one opening was a Honolulu-built "Haole Sampan", built by local Japanese ship builders. The season 2-3 opening was shot in Marina Del Ray, Los Angeles using a different boat entirely- a 1964 Wheeler Playmate, 38 foot Express Bridge. That later boat has been restored and is housed in Vancouver Island, Canada.
isletime77 robwayne 13 months ago
The B&W season one opener is the Ala Wai Yacht Harbor in Honolulu, HI. It was the last day of shooting of the pilot at that location in Hawaii. They had just heard that, President Kennedy had been assassinated, so you may see an American flag in the background at half mast as the boat heads out to sea from left to right as shown in the above black-and-white photo.

The color season 2–3 opener is not Marina del Rey.
It is a combination of Los Alamitos Bay Harbor in Long Beach CA when the boat is at the docks and it is the Newport CA Harbor channel rock jetty at “the Wedge” when it’s going out to sea.
Marina del Rey, Los Angeles was not operational until April 10, 1965 when it was formally dedicated.[13]

isletime77 robwayne 13 months ago
Moloaa Beach, Kauai Hi is the beach they used for the black-and-white pilot. The boat was towed there from Honolulu and brought up onto the shore and is where most of the filming took place.
Randall 60 months ago
As stated, the opening credits for Gilligan's Island were filmed in Long Beach. However, that was for Season Two -- the first season the show was filmed in color. The opening credits for Season One were filmed in black and white in Honolulu.
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