Where Was Fire in the Sky Filmed
Roseburg, Sutherlin, and Oakland, Oregon.
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About Fire in the Sky
The 1993 film Fire in the Sky was directed by Robert Lieberman and is based on the book written by Travis Walton. Walton’s book was titled The Walton Experience, and just like the movie, it depicts the story of a terrifying alien abduction. D.B. Sweeney, Robert Patrick, Craig Sheffer, James Garner, and Henry Thomas star in the movie. Fire in the Sky takes place in a town called Snowflake in Arizona.
Walton works as a logger in the White Mountains, and one night when he and his co-workers are heading down the mountain to go home, they notice a strange object flying in the sky. Walton is the only one to get out of the truck and is struck by a beam of light. The other men flee the scene after Walton is sent flying by the strange beam of light. Walton’s best friend Rogers returns later to look for him, but there is nothing to be found.
The loggers tell the police about the incident, but with no evidence to back up their story, the town quickly thinks that the loggers must have been behind Walton’s disappearance. A search party is sent out through the mountain, but when Walton still is not found the loggers have to take a lie detector test. The tests are said to be inconclusive, and the sheriff tells the men they will need to take them again.
After another test, everyone but the character Dallis is shown to be telling the truth. Five days after this, Rogers gets a call from Walton who is found at a gas station, confused and naked. In the hospital, Walton gets upset when he learns Rogers fled the scene at first, but Rogers feels Walton is to blame because he got out of the truck in the first place.
A welcome home party is thrown for Walton, but during the party, he has a flashback to the night he was abducted by the UFO. The flashback shows Walton waking up in a cocoon on the ship. He breaks free but is quickly grabbed by aliens and taken into a room where he is examined and probed. Afterward, he was sent back to Earth. Some believed Walton’s story, but many people were skeptical about it.
Fire in the Sky Locations
Fire in the Sky was filmed in the state of Oregon, with three different cities being used as locations. These cities were Sutherlin, Oakland, and Roseburg. Each of these towns was used to represent the movie town of Snowflake, Arizona, where Travis Walton was said to be actually abducted by aliens. The book the film is based on recounts Walton’s story.
Some of the old buildings used in Oregon can still be seen today, and the streets can still be walked by fans. Oakland, Oregon was the main city used for filming Fire in the Sky. Winston, Oregon was used for the scenes when Walton is found, and outdoor areas around Idleyld Park, Oregon were used for many of the shots of the White Mountains.
Idleyld Park was also utilized for the restaurant scene featured in the movie. The Oregon backdrop provided an exceptional setting for the logging community in Fire in the Sky and brought to life the Arizona town it was meant to depict. The scene that shows Walton being abducted by the aliens is still considered one of the scariest abduction scenes of any alien movie.
The beam of light scene in Fire in the Sky
Idleyld Park, Douglas, OR
In the film Fire in the Sky, one of the best scenes of the movie comes when Travis Walton is struck by a beam of light from a strange object in the sky. This happens at night when Walton and the other loggers on his crew are going home in their truck. The men notice something and thinking it could be a plane that has crashed, they decide to go and look around.
When they get closer they notice a strange object floating in the sky, and Walton decides to get out and investigate. The other loggers stay in the truck and are against Walton looking around. After being hit with a bright beam of light, Walton gets thrown back, and the rest of the men flee the scene. However, the other loggers quickly regret leaving their friend behind, and the next day Rogers goes back to where the strange light was and tries to find him. But Walton has completely disappeared.
This leads the men to feel remorseful for their actions, and the character David Whitlock prays for forgiveness for what they did.
Whitlock prays, “My Father in heaven, I humbly bow before you. I ask for your spirit to be with me. Forgive us, Father, for what we've done.”
Winston and Idleyld Park, Oregon were both used for shots for Walton seeing the ship, and the subsequent scenes of him being searched for.
Looking for Travis Walton scene in Fire in the Sky
After Travis Walton seems to have disappeared, Rogers and the other loggers go to the police of Snowflake, Arizona to tell them what happened. Rogers tells the sheriff, Frank Watters, about the UFO and that he believes his friend has been abducted by aliens.
“I searched the woods and... But he wasn't... There was nothing. They took him,” Rogers says.
However, Watters does not believe the story, despite it being backed up by Whitlock.
Watters asks Rogers, “You expect me to believe that a flying saucer came down and took your friend away to outer space?”
Even though Watters doesn’t believe the story being told by the loggers, he does organize a search party to look for Walton. When the search party does not reveal anything, the police department and the rest of the town start to think that the loggers are the ones behind Walton’s disappearance. This causes them to be ostracized by the townspeople and Watters starts to become more suspicious of them. The search party scenes in Fire in the Sky were filmed in the Oregon towns of Winston and Roseburg.
The homecoming party scene in Fire in the Sky
Whenever Walton is eventually found and brought home, the loggers organize a welcome home party at Walton’s home. This comes after he fights with Rogers in the hospital about who is to blame for Walton being abducted. Walton is angry to learn Rogers drove away at first instead of trying to help, and Rogers blames Walton, saying he never should have left the truck.
Shortly after the hospital, Walton gets questioned by Watters about where he was during his five-day disappearance, but he is not able to remember much of anything. After saying he doesn’t know anything, Watters tells Walton he will wait.
“You don't, huh? Well, I can see your memory isn't quite there yet. So, why don't you say we just give it a little more time, huh? I'm a patient man. I'm not going anywhere. You decide you got something to tell me, I can be reached through the sheriff's office,” Watters says.
After being questioned Walton attends his homecoming party, during which he has a breakdown. The breakdown reveals a flashback of the events Walton experienced on the ship, from when he first gets abducted to when he wakes up back on Earth.
Travis wakes on the ship scene in Fire in the Sky
During the breakdown that Walton has at his homecoming party, he has a flashback of all the events on the ship, starting with when he wakes up. Walton finds himself in a cocoon and breaks himself free. He winds up in a zero-gravity room and starts to quietly explore the trip.
The special effects used in these scenes in Fire in the Sky are considered some of the best effects of any alien movie released in the 90s. Walton comes across more cocoons and human remains before being grabbed by the aliens and taken to a lab on the ship. While the abduction part was shot on location in Winston, Oregon, the film shoots inside the ship were done at a studio.
At the end of the film, Walton and Rogers visit the site of the abduction, and Rogers tells his friend, “Let's get going. You gotta go to work. And I'd like go get the hell outta here before they come back.”
Alien experiment scene in Fire in the Sky
The alien experiment that Walton is subjected to on the spaceship is one of the scariest scenes in Fire in the Sky. It is also considered one of the best alien scenes of any sci-fi movie, even decades later. The special effects make the aliens look extremely life-like, and they probe and experiment on Walton while he is fully conscious.
While these shots were filmed in a studio, the shots showing Walton before and after the abduction were filmed in Oakland and Winston, Oregon. At the end of the movie, when Walton and Rogers go back to the abduction site, Rogers expresses concern that the aliens may come back. However, Walton does not think they will.
He tells Rogers, “They won't be back... I don't think they like me.”
Rogers gets a call scene in Fire in the Sky
In the movie Fire in the Sky, Rogers learns that his best friend is back when he receives a Fstrange phone call one night. The call is from Walton himself, five days after he has disappeared. The operator on the line tells Rogers that he has a collect call from Travis Walton. Despite being told by his wife to hang up, Rogers accepts the charges and lets the call come through.
He immediately hears, “Mike,” shouted through the line, followed by, “Help me!”
Rogers finds out that Walton is nearby and goes to pick him up. Walton is found naked and confused about what has happened to him. Even when questioned by the police he says he can’t remember anything. The events on the ship are shown in short flashbacks, until Walton’s homecoming party when he has a breakdown and remembers the entire events of what happened on the spaceship.
The location where Walton is picked up by an old store was filmed in Winston, Oregon, and the building was still standing in 2017.
Telling the sheriff scene in Fire in the Sky
one believes them. There is a search party organized and when Walton is still not found, all of the men are subjected to a lie detector test. They have to do the test again before Watters reveals they seem to be telling the truth. Even after the lie detector tests, the town is skeptical of the loggers, and they are outcasted. The shots of Rogers talking to Watters, and other scenes showing the town of Snowflake, were filmed in Oakland, Oregon. The town can still be visited today, and fans can walk the streets and locations used in Fire in the Sky.
Whitlock tells Watters that he knows Rogers is telling the truth about the events surrounding Walton’s disappearance.
“I didn't have to go back. Mike Rogers says he wasn't there, and you can take it to the bank. And you know that, Blake,” Whitlock says.
Fire in the Sky is considered one of the best alien sci-fi movies of all time and hit theatres in 1993. The movie is full of scary scenes and impressive special effects that are still enjoyed by fans today. Locations for Fire in the Sky can be found throughout Oregon in the towns of Oakland, Winston, Roseburg, and Idleyld Park. The movie casts some of the top names in Hollywood including, Robert Patrick, D.B., Sweeney, and Craig Sheffer. Despite being over 20 years old, fans still have fun walking the streets and taking in the old buildings featured in this icon alien horror movie.