Those of you who have seen David Fincher’s new drama, “Gone Girl,” will certainly remember the creepy and ominous abandoned mall visited by police in the semi-fictional town of East Carthage, Missouri.
For those of you haven’t seen the movie (go see it now!), we won’t spoil anything, other than to say that the setting was mysterious and fascinatingly foreboding. The location fits perfectly with the cold, dark, and eerie mood of the movie.
The abandoned mall is actually not in Missouri at all, but instead is a “dead mall” in Hawthorne, California, southwest of Los Angeles.
While initially popular when it opened in 1977, The Hawthorne Plaza Mall saw a steady decline in the 90’s and finally closed its doors in 1999.
Since then, the mall has been a popular spot for Hollywood location scouts. “Gone Girl” is not the only movie to film there. Other productions have included “Evolution,” “Minority Report,” “The Fast and The Furious: Tokyo Drift,” and “The Green Hornet.”
The mall originally was anchored by department stores J.C. Penney, Montgomery Ward, and The Broadway. Today, only a Quiznos and a few government offices remain open.
The mall is 900,000 square feet and features a five-acre parking lot, though not many cars park there anymore.
Hawthorne Plaza was looted in the Los Angeles riots of 1992, and from there, things never got much better for the mall.
Police Officer (and celebrity food critic) Chris Cognac grabbed these shots when he visited the mall during a security check prior to some demolition inside the building.
Currently, there are no plans to remodel or renovate the mall. At the very least, it will continue to serve Hollywood as a spooky place to film movies.
To see more, check out this video inside the mall, made by YouTuber Tom Explores Los Angeles:
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