A Star Is Born: Coachella, Glastonbury, and Stagecoach
For the latest retelling of A Star Is Born, it was important to first-time director Bradley Cooper that the music scenes — featuring Lady Gaga and/or himself — come across as completely authentic. So when Gaga headlined Coachella in 2017, production set up and shot concert scenes at the California fest’s Empire Polo Club over the days in between the two festival weekends. The showbiz drama (in its fourth incarnation, following 1937’s Janet Gaynor starrer, 1954’s musical with Judy Garland, and 1976’s Barbra Streisand vehicle) also got some footage of its stars performing at Stagecoach, where they had an eight-minute window onstage in between two other artists’ sets, and at Glastonbury, where Kris Kristofferson (who starred opposite Barbra Streisand in the 1976 film) gave four minutes of his own set to Cooper.
Ocean's 8: The Met Gala
The Met Gala takes place every year on the first Monday in May, but the cast of Ocean’s 8 hit the annual high-fashion theme party in January to shoot the female-powered heist flick. The faux fundraiser was painstakingly recreated for Gary Ross’ star-studded film, and fashion personalities including Derek Blasberg, Zac Posen, and Anna Wintour herself reportedly shot cameos — as did Olivia Munn, who told EW she had to pay for the privilege. Hopefully she didn’t have to drop $30,000 for a fake ticket!
Girls Trip: ESSENCE Festival
The raunchy breakout hit of the summer ’17 took place at ESSENCE Festival, and its quartet of stars attended the annual New Orleans music festival in 2016 to capture the true spirit of the weekend. Some of the shooting took place at the event itself, while other scenes were staged to look like ESSENCE attractions, including Iyanla Vanzant’s appearance. The inspirational speaker wasn’t able to attend that year, but as a staple at the fest, Vanzant’s fake appearance made the movie’s version of the festival even realer than the real thing.
Fever Pitch: The World Series
When the Red Sox won the 2004 World Series, the plot of baseball-centered rom-com Fever Pitch, which takes place against the backdrop of that year’s season, had to change. In a bit of spur-of-the-moment filmmaking, stars Drew Barrymore and Jimmy Fallon were filmed attending Game 4 of that historic series and caught on camera kissing in the field after the Sox swept the Cardinals, breaking the Curse of the Bambino.
Entourage: The Golden Globes
Entourage’s Vincent Chase may be a fake movie star, but it was a real awards show he attended in the 2015 film sequel to the HBO series. Vinny and his whole entourage hit the red carpet at the 2015 Golden Globes, even staging some fake arrivals interviews with Carson Daly.
The Devil Wears Prada: Paris Fashion Week
The Devil Wears Prada’s glittering Paris sequence was partially shot in the City of Light, but only partially — and not the actual Paris Fashion Week shows and events that Anne Hathaway’s Andie and Meryl Streep’s Miranda crossed the Atlantic for. The film captured the romance and glamour of the city as efficiently as possible, shooting only exteriors over the course of just two days, and Streep didn’t go at all.
Logan Lucky: Coca-Cola 600
Steven Soderbergh’s hillbilly heist takes place against the backdrop of the Coca-Cola 600, and while most of the action was shot on a soundstage and much of the racing captured in a controlled environment on a different speedway, the filmmaker did attend the real event — along with stars Channing Tatum and Riley Keough — in May of 2016 to get some authentic footage of the race and the commotion surrounding it.
We Are Your Friends: Summerfest
You probably hadn’t heard of Summerfest, the event setting the stage for the climax of the 2015 Zac Efron-starring EDM drama We Are Your Friends, and with good reason. “The end of our film takes place at a block party music festival in downtown LA,” director and co-writer Max Joseph explained in a featurette about the making of the film. “In order to shoot, we actually threw a block party music festival in Downtown LA.”
Black Sunday: The Super Bowl
John Frankenheimer’s thriller revolves around a terrorist plot for the Goodyear Blimp to drop a bomb on the Super Bowl. Against all odds, Frankenheimer got both the NFL and Goodyear to cooperate, and was able to capture both the real blimp and the real Super Bowl X — though the terrifying climax was shot after the game, so that unsuspecting attendees wouldn’t believe they were about to suffer death by blimp.