Armageddon movie cover Movie Locations Guide

Where was Armageddon filmed?

1998

About Armageddon

The end of the world is upon us, and the fate of humanity lies in a ragtag bunch of misfits led by Bruce Willis, cast as Harry S. Stamper. Welcome to Armageddon.

This 1998 big-budget action blockbuster, directed by Michael Bay, offers the sort of cinematic experience to put a smile on any thrill seeker’s face. The film plunges viewers straight into the action, with a frightening meteor shower raining down on Manhattan and leaving a trail of destruction in its wake.

But there’s much worse yet to come, as NASA scientists soon discover that an asteroid the size of Texas is on a collision course with Earth, an event that will be truly catastrophic for all life on the planet. Even more frightening, impact will occur in just 18 days.

All appears lost, but NASA boss Dan Truman (Billy Bob Thornton) hatches a plan to save humanity from extinction. It’s a hail mary, but it just might work. The plan is for a crew of rough-around-the edges oil drillers to train NASA astronauts to drill into the asteroid and detonate a nuclear bomb, splitting it in half.

The drilling crew is led by Harry Stamper (Willis), a man who is blue-collar through and through but also recognized as an excellent oil driller. Other members of the crew include A.J. (Ben Affleck) — who happens to be sleeping with Harry’s daughter Grace (Liv Tyler) — along with Chick (Will Patton), Rockhound (Steve Buscemi), Oscar (Owen Wilson), and Bear (Michael Clarke Duncan).

During a crash 12-day course, this ragtag team train astronaut Willie Sharp (William Fichtner), who will help them fly to the asteroid. Two shuttles, Freedom and Independence, soon depart Earth with the crew onboard in a last ditch-effort to destroy the asteroid. But after a disastrous landing and a host of unexpected difficulties drilling to the center of the space rock, all seems lost.

Can Harry and his team of blue-collar heroes band together to save life on Earth? This is Hollywood, so of course they can!

City Locations

New York City, NY; Los Angeles, CA; Washington, DC; Istanbul, Turkey; Delhi, India; Shanghai, China

Location Types

American, House, NatureScapes, Airports, Clubs/Bars

Location Styles

Exotic/Tropical, Foreign, High Tech

Armageddon Locations

If you want to check out any Armageddon locations for yourself, we’ve got some great news for you. Several locations from this iconic action blockbuster are easily accessible and can be found right around the USA, but also right around the world.

Close to home, you can see instantly recognizable settings like New York’s Flatiron Building and Grand Central Station used in early establishing shots. However, some scenes that depict “New York” in the movie were actually filmed in downtown LA. Also in the City of Angels, the Los Angeles Theatre makes an appearance as the nightclub where Rockhound and Oscar go to blow off some steam before heading into space.

Of course, as the asteroid represents a threat to all life on Earth, Michael Bay included footage of a host of locations from around the world. Other cities to feature as Armageddon locations include Istanbul in Turkey, the Taj Mahal at Agra in India, and Shanghai in China.

As for the surface of the asteroid, well, that was filmed in South Dakota’s Badlands National Park.

We’ve gathered together the details of where a number of the best scenes in Armageddon were filmed (spoiler alert!). Keep reading to find out where these locations are and how to find them for yourself.

Fun fact:

Armageddon was released just a couple of months after Deep Impact, another disaster movie, this time centered around a comet on a collision course with Earth.

Meteor shower scene in Armageddon

Barclay Hotel, 103 4th St, Los Angeles, CA

Like every good disaster movie, Armageddon doesn’t muck around but instead plunges viewers headfirst into the action. So, after the Charlton Heston-narrated introduction about how a six-mile-wide asteroid killed off the dinosaurs, we see space shuttle Atlantis bombarded and absolutely obliterated by a meteor shower.

The action then moves to the streets of New York, where we see shots of the iconic New York City skyline, and then zoom in on a man riding a bike with his cute dog in the basket. But when he stops to watch a TV in a store window about the explosion of the space shuttle, the dog runs off and attacks a nearby street vendor’s inflatable Godzilla doll.

The two men soon square up to one another, preparing to fight. “If I wasn't no Christian, I'd be throwin' your fat, pineapple-eatin' ass through the window,” the bike rider says to the vendor. But just then, the TVs start to flicker as pieces of a fiery meteor rains down from the sky, almost landing right on their heads. The meteors then come thick and fast, smashing into 53rd Street Station and sending iconic yellow cabs exploding into the sky.

Though depicting New York City, this 53rd Street Station scene was actually filmed in front of the Barclay Hotel in downtown LA. You can find the hotel at 103 4th Street.

Harry hits golf balls at Greenpeace protestors scene in Armageddon

Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of Galveston, TX

After the tense opening of Armageddon, in which New York is ravaged by meteors and NASA scientists realize we could be headed for a global extinction event, it’s time for a change of pace. The next shots take us to Harry Stamper’s oil rig, which the on-screen caption tells us is located in the South China Sea.

At first, it appears like Harry is on a golf course somewhere, lining up a tee shot and aiming for the fairway. But as he launches a golf ball into the distance and yells out “rise and shine,” we see that he’s not aiming for grass but instead a boat full of Greenpeace protestors. “Stop the drilling,” the protestors chant, but it falls on deaf ears as Harry calls out “Fore!” and launches another ball at their boat.

This Armageddon scene was actually filmed on a real oil rig, the Garden Banks Oil Rig, which was located about 200 miles from Galveston in the Gulf of Mexico.

Rockhound and Oscar get kicked out of a nightclub scene in Armageddon

Los Angeles Theater, 615 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA

The oil drillers know they’re about to embark on a high-risk mission. With little time to prepare and the odds of success desperately slim, they know there’s a pretty good chance they won’t make it home alive. With this in mind, they’re all determined to make the most of their time on Earth while they still can.

Rockhound and Oscar in particular are super-keen to live it up before launch, as we see them partying at a strip club. Rockhound tells a stripper he’s in town for astronaut training, and that he’s a mission specialist. “What does that mean?” the stripper asks seductively. “I don’t know,” says the geologist, before he’s confronted by a group of burly bikers. And when Rockhound gives the lead biker some money to go buy himself a neck, a brawl breaks out and these astronauts-in-training are soon arrested.

This Armageddon film shoot location is the Los Angeles Theatre, and this scene was filmed in the lobby. You can find this beautiful building at 615 South Broadway in the heart of the city.

Harry apologizes to Grace scene in Armageddon

Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Launch Complex 34, Cape Canaveral, FL

Harry’s relationship with his daughter has always been a source of conflict. Harry always believes he knows what’s right for Grace, even though she’s an independent woman who is more than capable of making her own decisions. And while Harry has never been able to stand the idea of Grace and A.J. being together, there’s nothing like preparing to embark on a deadly space mission to help remind you of what’s really important.

On the day of the launch, Grace and Harry meet to reconcile their differences. Harry admits that he’s not sure whether he’s done the right thing raising her, dragging her around to a series of oil rigs, but Grace sets him straight. “I love you. And don’t talk like you’re not coming back,” she says tearfully. “Promise me that you’ll come back.”

“I promise, Grace,” Harry eventually responds, and father and daughter embrace.

This moving scene was filmed at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Launch Complex 34 in Florida, where you’ll find the Apollo 1 Memorial. The Memorial commemorates the loss of three astronauts in the Apollo 1 disaster.

Crash-landing scene in Armageddon

Badlands National Park, Interior, SD

No-one expected landing on the surface of an asteroid to be a walk in the park, and they’re about to find out just how difficult this death-defying mission is going to be. As the Freedom and Independence approach the asteroid, the Independence is smashed by debris and makes a deadly crash-landing.

“Houston, Independence has gone down,” the announcement comes through, much to the dismay of everyone in the control room. The Freedom, meanwhile, lands safely but well away from the target site, coming to ground above a surface of iron ferrite that will be extremely difficult to drill through.

This Armageddon filming location is in South Dakota’s Badlands National Park. With its uniquely spectacular rugged rock formations, the area of the Barry Barber Ranch was chosen as the perfect site to re-create the surface of an asteroid.

A.J. and Grace get married scene in Armageddon

St. Brendan’s Catholic Church, 310 S Van Ness Ave, Los Angeles, CA

Just before sacrificing his life to save the entire world, Harry finally admits that A.J. and Grace are meant to be together. “You gotta take care of my little girl now. That’s your job,” Harry says to A.J. “I’d be damn proud to have you marry Grace.” He also sends a video message to Grace giving her his blessing to tie the knot with his one true love.

So, after Harry’s tragic death and the return of the remaining shuttle crew to Earth, where they’re greeted as heroes, we finally get to see A.J. and Grace walking down the aisle. In gorgeous scenes, with the sounds of Aerosmith’s “i Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” playing, the two lovers get hitched. Just before she kisses her groom, Grace’s gaze strays to photos of her father and the other crew members who didn’t make it home.

These wedding scenes from Armageddon were filmed at St Brendan’s Catholic Church in Los Angeles, which is located at 310 South Van Ness Avenue. You can also spot this church in Beverly Hills 90210 as well as the 1953 version of The War of the Worlds.

Conclusion

Armageddon is an iconic big-screen blockbuster. While reviews from critics were quite mixed, the film was undoubtedly a box office success, grossing over $550 million worldwide. Besides, who doesn’t love watching Bruce Willis at his no-nonsense, tough guy best?

So, if you’re a fan of this sci-fi action classic, or you just want to visit some of the iconic locations featured in the film, you can. From LA to New York, Shanghai to Istanbul, there are loads of great Armageddon locations you can check out for yourself.