Where was Harry and The Hendersons filmed?
Seattle, Index, Wenatchee National Forest, Washington State
American, House, NatureScapes, Rustic, Buildings, Miscellaneous, Police
Americana, Beachfront, Classic Car, Classic Truck, Cruiser, Parking Lot, Rustic, Station Wagon, Truck Style
About Harry and The Hendersons
Harry and The Hendersons is a 1987 comedy centered around the Bigfoot fantasy myth. William Dear produced and directed this comedy with Steven Spielberg as an uncredited executive producer. The producer decided on a fabulous star cast for the film, with the two main leads of George Henderson portrayed by John Lithgow and Harry the Bigfoot by Kevin Peter Hall (who also starred in the Predator franchise owing to his 7ft 2in height).
Spoiler alert: get ready to fall in love with this movie! The storyline follows the Henderson family, consisting of the father, George, the mother, Nancy (Melinda Dillon), and kids, Sarah (Margaret Langrick) and Ernie (Joshua Rudoy), returning to Seattle from a hunting and camping trip in the woodlands. While on their way home, they hit something with their car. When they get down to see the animal, they realize it is a dead Bigfoot. They secure it to the roof of their car and bring it home to Seattle, only to discover that Bigfoot was unconscious, not dead.
They name the Bigfoot Harry and start trying to domesticate him and teach him tricks. During this time with the Henderson family, Harry also develops a familial bond with them. Harry the Bigfoot is saddened and heartbroken at the hunting trophies throughout the house and starts burying the trophies as a sign of nature's balance. Eventually, the Hendersons realize that Harry should be in his own home and decide to take him back to the woodlands and set him free. However, Harry escapes and is lost to the Hendersons. They try to find him but cannot.
In the meantime, Harry has his own adventures with people suddenly reporting a sighting of the infamous 'Bigfoot' around town, leading to a rising panic in the suburbs of Seattle. Harry is also in danger from a hunter, Jacques LeFleur (David Suchet), who is tracking his every move, and wants to claim he killed Bigfoot.
What follows are some of the best scenes in Harry and The Hendersons - a heart-warming story of family, new friends, love, and sacrifice.
Harry and The Hendersons Locations
The filming locations of Harry and The Hendersons are in and around the city of Seattle. The majority of the scenes are shot in Seattle, in a residential suburb called Wallingford. Many of the Henderson family scenes with Bigfoot are filmed at a private residence in Wallingford, with parts from the neighbors also shot in the surrounding areas.
Thankfully the Washington State area is known for its abundant woodlands, water bodies, and forest regions. The camping trip at the start of the film, the journey back to Seattle, Harry the Bigfoot moving about, and more are all shot within a couple of hours of driving distance from Seattle. Some filming locations are no longer present. Places like the Hendersons & Son store, where the hunter, Jacques LaFleur (David Suchet), buys his ammunition, and the Museum of Anthropology, where George meets Dr. Wrightwood, are easy to visit and within driving distance so fans can still plan a quick trip.
The surrounding region was perfect for the rural and urban differentiation since Bigfoot lives in a woodlands area and is brought to the city. The Harry and The Hendersons action scenes and storyline are well thought out and go hand-in-hand with the film shoot locations.
Fans can plan an entire trip around the Seattle and Washington area and have an itinerary chalked out well in advance.
There's also a TV series by the same name. However, in the TV series, Harry the Bigfoot chooses to stay with his new family instead of returning to the woodlands.
Ernie hunts a rabbit for the first time scene in Harry and The Hendersons
Kachess Lake, Wenatchee National Forest
George Henderson (portrayed by John Lithgow) teaches his son, Ernie (Joshua Rudoy), how to hunt in the forest, and while doing so, Ernie manages to hunt a rabbit for the first time. Both father and son are highly excited and make their way back to their campsite. George enters the campsite yelling, "LUNCH!" Ernie is pleased with himself and announces to his mom Nancy (Melinda Dillon), and sister, Sarah (Margaret Langrick), "And I killed it!"
George is excited over the size of the rabbit and is immensely proud of Ernie. Sarah looks at George and Ernie and says disgustedly, "There's no way I'm eating a dead rabbit. I thought you said we were leaving! Will this never end?" Nancy looks at her daughter and says, "We are leaving. Before lunch."
Some of the Harry and The Hendersons filming locations are at Kachess Lake in Wenatchee National Forest, where this scene was shot. The lake is gorgeous, open to the public, and not too far from Seattle. The best way to reach is to hire a car and drive via the I-90 E to Easton till you take Exit 70. Keep moving to NF-4818 till you reach the shores of Kachess Lake.
Family bickers while crossing the woodlands on way home scene in Harry and The Hendersons
North Bend, East of Seattle, I-90
George Henderson and his family are returning home to Seattle after their camping trip. The road is winding, with plenty of forest and woodlands on either side. George is driving a little fast to get back to Seattle when the family is talking and bickering about something. Sarah says, "I don't feel very good." Ever the exuberant child, Ernie exclaims, "Pull over, dad! She's gonna launch!" Their mother, Nancy, interjects in a peaceful tone, "Open the window, honey; a little air will do us all some good."
Suddenly Sarah realizes Ernie is doing something in the fish cooler and says, "It's the fish! Ernie, close the cooler!" Ernie looks for his baseball glove and asks his father, "Hey, dad? Do you think I can get a pair of real major league baseball cleats when we get back?"
This forest-woodland area is one of the most gorgeous Harry and The Hendersons locations. The forest feel and fresh air are part of the North Bend, to the East of Seattle, on the way to Kachess Lake, where the campsite scene was filmed. To get to North Bend, continue on the I-90 E and take exit 31. When you reach the roundabout, keep an eye for the third exit onto WA-202 W/ North Bend Blvd N.
Bigfoot eating food from fridge scene in Harry and The Hendersons
4214 Burke Avenue North, Wallingford, Seattle
George and the family return from their camping trip with Bigfoot tied to the roof of their car. Thinking Bigfoot is dead, they tie him to the car's roof and bring him home to sell his body to a museum.
In the middle of the night, Bigfoot regains consciousness and raids the kitchen and refrigerator. George startles Bigfoot, who gets caught stealing the food. George gets scared of its enormous size and starts chucking things at it. He throws a chair, trips over the fallen fridge, and starts screaming. Bigfoot also gets scared and starts growling and gesturing wildly at George. Finally, Bigfoot catches up to George and holds him. George finally starts yelling, "Help! Somebody, help!" Suddenly Ernie runs into the kitchen, and George tells him, "Ernie! Get your mother! Quickly!"
Out of all the funny scenes in Harry and The Hendersons, audiences found this one the most hilarious. This scene was shot at a private residence at 4214 Burke Avenue N, in Wallingford, Seattle. Getting here is relatively straightforward; hop onto bus number 62 and get off at N 45th St and Wallingford Ave N. From here, the walk to the house is less than 5 minutes.
Harry runs away into the surrounding neighborhood scene in Harry and The Hendersons
Wallingford District, Seattle
Bigfoot runs away from the Hendersons while George plans to take him back to where they found him. They feel Harry the Bigfoot (Kevin Peter Hall) should live in peace. Harry unknowingly enters the home of one of the other neighbors.
The neighbor (Laura Kenny) wakes up and reaches for a gun at her bedside, thinking it's a burglar. Later she feels it could be a mouse, so she rolls up a magazine. However, the 'mouse' she swats turns out to be Harry's toe, and he starts screaming with pain!
Later, a news anchor jokingly reports that a woman was found unconscious on top of her car. When revived, she claimed, "She must have been put there by a huge, hairy, man-like creature resembling the legendary Bigfoot who she had earlier mistaken for a mouse! A mouse!"
Fans can visit this Harry and The Hendersons location by going to the same neighborhood, Wallingford District, as the home of the Hendersons. Most of the Bigfoot scenes where he runs around town were shot in this residential district. Simply catch the E-line Metro, and get off at Aurora Ave N and N 46th St. The walk to the neighborhood is approximately 5 minutes from here.
George gets irritated with his colleagues' scene in Harry and The Hendersons
5201 Ballard Ave NW, Seattle
George is at work at the 'Henderson & Son' store when his colleagues try to rib him about meeting Bigfoot. George is shocked at how they found out when they remind him about his family camping trip and how he might have run into Bigfoot in the woodlands. George's colleague, Billers (David McIntyre), explains, "I read the things weigh over 400 pounds. Smell real bad, too."
Hearing this, the other colleague, Stuart (Nick Flynn), starts snickering and comes close to George. At this time, George is pouring himself a cup of hot coffee. Stuart sniffs the air around George and remarks, "Hell, looks like we got one of those right here! What's your shoe size, Billers?" George gets disgusted by their jokes and walks away, muttering, "I'm working with a**holes."
This Harry and The Hendersons film scene is shot at a store (now converted) at 5201 Ballard Ave NW in Seattle. This store is changed into a spa, so the original space doesn't exist, but fans can go and visit the area, click photographs, and see some places around. Getting here from the heart of Seattle is quite easy. Just hop onto bus number 40, and hop off at Leary Ave NW & NW Vernon Pl. From this stop, the location is a 2-minute walk.
George visits museum for information scene in Harry and The Hendersons
Index, Cascade Loop, Washington
To get answers about Harry and where he might have run off, George goes to the Museum of Anthropology, also known as 'Bigfoot Museum,' to meet Dr. Wrightwood (Don Ameche). The museum is unlike anything George has seen before, and when he enters, he is greeted by Dr. Wrightwood, who says, "Hard to believe, huh? And from the look on your mug, you think it's a load, don't you? Everybody asks, 'Has anybody ever seen one?' Let me ask you, you being a flatlander, a city fellow, you've seen hundreds of thousands of pigeons, right?"
When George responds positively, Dr. Wrightwood asks, "Have you ever seen a baby pigeon? Well, neither have I. But I got a hunch they exist." George introduces himself and starts asking for information about Bigfoot and how to help them.
The Harry and The Hendersons production team built a set at Index for the museum scenes. While it was a set, the team kept part of it up even after filming for fans to go out and see some film memorabilia. Head to the Espresso Cafe in Cascade Loop and look for the 14 ft tall wooden carving of Harry Henderson.
Harry and The Hendersons was one of the most wholesome, loved movies in the late 1980s. Fans still reminisce over the simplicity shown in the film. Everything from Harry's heartache when he sees the animal trophies in the house to burying a mink stole that he thinks has just died stole peoples' hearts. The balance of nature is shown beautifully in this adaptation of the Bigfoot drama.
While plenty of critics think the movie is not worth its salt, many enjoy it for the beauty of it being a fantastic movie. The production team has done a great job finding filming locations in Seattle and the surrounding Washington state areas that could quickly adapt to a Bigfoot myth. Many movie fans found the familiar names, streets, and iconic landmarks like the Seattle Space Needle comforting.
Most of the filming areas and locations reinforced the feeling of a clueless urban Bigfoot with big feet and a bigger heart!