Jag movie cover Movie Locations Guide

Where was Jag filmed?

About Jag

Jag is a legal drama TV series with a US Navy theme filmed in America that lasted 10 seasons from 1995 to 2005. Jag is an acronym for Judge Advocate Generals, who are uniformed lawyers. They can prosecute and defend US Naval and Marine Corps cases, advise on military law, and conduct investigations. Like the hit TV series Law and Order, Jag is also based on real-life instances pulled from headlines that reference aspects of actual incidents and cases related to American Naval Law. Jag ensured that its main characters were based on their real-life counterparts and made several episodes where they were involved with the CIA on intelligence operations.

The story revolves around Commander Harmon ‘Harm' Rabb, Jr. (David James Elliott) and Lt. Colonel Sarah 'Mac' Mackenzie (Catherine Bell) and their intertwined lives. After David Elliott left the show post-filming the 10th season, it was not renewed, and instead, several off-shoots were formed, with creator Donald P. Bellisario becoming Executive Producer.

Throughout the 10 seasons, Jag kept up with the latest happenings in the real world and gave audiences a glimpse of what really happens in the American Naval Law. The production team did a fantastic job with the seasons and the finale, where Harm and Mac decide to get married but are assigned different stations. One of them would have to give up their military career to stay together.

In typical Jag fashion, they opt for a coin toss to decide, but audiences are never shown the outcome because when the coin lands, all that is on the face are the numbers 1995 – 2005, signaling the end of the decades-long TV series.

The coin toss was revealed in 2019 in NCIS: Los Angeles, where Mac wins the coin toss and Harm resigns. However, they mutually end their relationship. Harm rejoins the Navy and now serves as the USMC liaison to the Secretary of State, a civilian position.

Harm and Mac rekindle their relationship 11 years later when they meet again, but audiences are again left with the burning question of whether they will get back together.

City Locations

San Diego, California,

Location Types

American, Apartment, Beach/ Oceanview, Cabins, House, NatureScapes, Automotives, Airports, Banquet Halls, Buildings/ Offices, Bars, Coffee, Sports, Medical, Hotels, Police, Religious, Restaurant, Ship Docks, Studios, Warehouses

Location Styles

Airstream, Americana, Beachfront, Dilapidated, Desert, Cubicles, Federal Building, Foreign, Helicopter, High Tech, Hotel/ Motel Style, Modern Building, Modern Car, Office Building Style, Plane, Sail, Shipping Dock

Jag Locations

Most of the Jag locations are filmed in the United States, even those in many international countries. Most of the filming is done in studios around Pasadena, and Santa Clarita, with plenty of scenes shot at the Paramount parking lot at Hollywood in Los Angeles. For the first season, the Jag headquarters was featured in Washington, DC, and later shifted to Falls Church in Virginia. Some of the interior headquarters scenes were also filmed at the Cravens Estate (now closed) in Pasadena.

Many of the scenes featuring global locations were also filmed in the US. For instance, the scene in the Moscow Hotel was the Park Plaza Hotel, the Siberian taiga was the Angeles National Forest, Bahrain and other locations in the Middle East were filmed at the Shrine Auditorium and the Blue Cloud Movie Ranch, and the East Coast towns were shot at the Old Town in Pasadena, and so on.

All these locations and the incredible sets made the series extremely believable while curbing the costs involved with shooting at international locations.

Teaser: The American Embassy scene in Rome was filmed at the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary at Los Feliz.

Fun fact:

Initially, Jag was perceived as a ‘A Few Good Men’ meets ‘Top Gun’ type of series, but it eventually became recognized for its originality.

Call me Alexi scene in season 2 episode 9 in Jag

Naval Air Station, North Island, San Diego, CA

Lieutenant Commander, JAG Corps (David James Elliott) are aboard the USS Kitty Hawk at the Newport, Virginia Naval Base. Harm has been tasked with protecting Princess Alexandra since Communist extremists threatened to assassinate her in retaliation for her father, the King of Romania's, policies.

Princess Alexandra exclaims, looking out at the ship, "It's so big!" Rabb responds sarcastically, "Not when you're trying to land at night in a Black." She asks if it's dangerous, and Rabb replies respectfully, "It has its moments, Your Highness." She pouts and says, "I hate it when you call me, 'Your Highness,' call me Alexi." Where he agrees, she says, "That's better, 'Harm.'"

This is one of the best scenes in Jag, where the USS John C. Stennis (CVN-74) is shown in its full glory. During the filming of this scene, the ship was docked at the Naval Air Station at North Island in San Diego, California. Fans of Jag can visit North Island by catching bus number 901 from the 12th and Imperial Transit Center stop and hopping off at 3rd St and I Avenue. From this stop, the AirStation is a three-minute walk.

Mac admits to her love scene in season 7 episode 12 in Jag

Los Angeles Center Studios, 450 S Bixel St, Los Angeles, CA

Lieutenant Colonel Sarah 'Mac' Mackenzie (Catherine Bell) tells Commander Sturgis Turner (Scott Lawrence) that she's having visions about Morgan Deeds, who doesn't haven't an alibi because he's having an affair. She believes he could be a horseman. Sturgis tells Mac, "Can we have a moratorium on the vision for at least an hour?" Before she can respond, they are interrupted by a call from Rabb. On the phone with Rabb, Sturgis tells him he's lost because of Mac's visions and that she's immune to logic and reason.

Sturgis meets Mac and apologizes for what he said to her but diverts the topic to her complicated relationship with Harm. When he keeps asking her what the problem is and why she hasn't taken their relationship to the next level, Mac blurts, "Because I'm in love with him!"

This filming location of Jag is the famous Los Angeles Center Studios in Los Angeles, California. It is within a 30-mile radius of Hollywood, has plenty of large and small sets, and has residential options for crew members. Fans of Jag can catch bus number 105 and hop off at the La Cienega/ Beverly stop. You may not see the Jag sets but may see others.

Mac can't drive in the Middle East scene in season 7 episode 15 in Jag

Shrine Auditorium and Expo Hall, 665 W Jefferson Blvd, Los Angeles, CA

Mac and Harm are in the Middle East when Harm gets a call from the Colonel wanting to meet. Mac wears a black burqa (as is compulsory for women in all Muslim countries), and they walk towards the car. Mac asks Harm, "What do you think the Colonel would want?" Harm replies, "To turn our client into a civilian."

Mac realizes it's probably the best option, but when Harm tries to reason, she takes off, saying, "She's doing it to herself, Harm. You know she came here to serve her country, not express her opinions. It's not ours to choose which orders to obey." Harm keeps trying to interrupt her, "Mac. Mac. Mac," but she doesn't stop. Finally, he holds out his hand and says, "I have to drive, we're going off base." She hands him the car keys and moves to the passenger seat because women aren't allowed to drive.

While many of the scenes shown in Jag are on a global scale, this Jag filming location is the Shrine Auditorium and Expo Hall, which was used for all the Middle East scenes, including Bahrain. The sets kept changing as per the scene and episode plot line. Getting here is fastest via bus number 2. Fans should hop off at the Jefferson/ Royal stop since the bus halts at the entrance to the Shrine Auditorium.

Maybe I'll take you scene in season 7 episode 14 in Jag

Cravens Estate, 430 Madeline Dr, Pasadena, CA

Harm gets Superbowl tickets. Mac approaches him near the coffee station and says, "I just don't understand how you walked away with two seats to the biggest game of the year." Harm replies, "Well, I have friends in high places." Mac tries to cajole him, "Come on, Harm, who's your benefactor?" Mac laughs, "I'll tell you what; if you can guess, maybe I'll take you."

She's surprised and asks, "Really? What about Sturgis?" Harm jokingly replies, "I'm gonna give you the first shot." Mac muses, "Normally, I'd guess you got them from Renee cos she's got the contacts, but you're disconnected now. There's Webb… Bobby Latham had them last year…."

Of the many Jag locations, this scene is shot in the now shut-down Cravens Estate at 430 Madeline Drive in Pasadena, California. The sprawling estate and its exterior grounds were used in many Jag scenes. After its purchase by singer Michael Feinstein, it was permanently closed as a filming venue. Fans can get here quickly if they catch the Metro Gold Line and hop off at the South Pasadena stop. The walk to Cravens Estate is approximately 20 minutes from this stop at a medium pace. However, fans must take permission before clicking pictures as it is private property.

Mac and Harm meet the Colonel scene in season 7 episode 15 in Jag

Blue Cloud Movie Ranch, 20000 Blue Cloud Rd, Green Valley, CA

After driving to a hotel, Mac and Harm meet Lt. Colonel Sara Coffey (Michele Greene) in a restaurant lobby. The Colonel meets them with her face covered (compulsory in the Middle East) and says, "Sorry you had to come to me. I'm involved in the current status that forces the discussion with the Saudis, but I wanted to put this on the table before the hearing resumes tomorrow." Harm asks her, "What is your role in these discussions, may I ask?" She replies, "I'm assisting the lead negotiator." Harm looks surprised and asks, "They let 'you' talk?!"

Apart from this scene, many Jag action scenes are filmed at this location – the Blue Cloud Movie Ranch in Santa Clarita. The set and the Middle Eastern village were constructed only for this scene. Apart from Jag, other films and series like True Blood, Seal, Iron Man, Iron Man 3, Spare Room, Bounty Killer, and San Andreas Quake have also been filmed here. To get to this movie ranch, hop onto bus number 4 on the red line, get off at the Bouquet Canyon Rd and Shadow Valley Ln stop, and walk for a few minutes to reach the entrance to the ranch.

Mac tells Harm her father is dying scene in season 4 episode 20 in Jag

Bronson Gate, Paramount Studios, 5555 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA

While there are many funny scenes in Jag, there are several emotional ones. In this scene, Harm notices Mac sitting at a coffee table with a cup of coffee. He sits on the empty chair beside her and says, "Talk to your friends." Mac tells him, "My father is dying." He says, "I'm sorry… I'm a little confused. Your father drank and abused your mother?" She replies, "Yeah."

When Harm tells her he thought she didn't care about her father, Mac replies affirmatively, saying, "He asked for me. He's in a hospice in California." Harm says, "If you're not angry anymore, go." Mac bursts, "The reason I'm over it is because I stopped making him a part of my life! I don't think about him or acknowledge his existence!"

Fans wanting to visit Jag locations should start from this one –Paramount Studios in Hollywood, LA. There are countless series and movies filmed here, like American Horror Story, Star Trek: The Next generation, Frasier, Forrest Gump, Monk, Suicide Squad, Glee, NCIS: Los Angeles, and more. Getting here is quickest via bus number 207 to the Western/ Melrose stop. From this stop, the walk to the studios is a few minutes.

Conclusion

Jag was a hit TV show from its first episode. Audiences were excited about the new series that featured original naval crimes and wanted to be part of the reality that their country faced. Jag was a global hit, with several new series starting because of it. Jag gave rise to NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles, NCIS: New Orleans, NCIS: Hawai'i, and NCIS: Sydney. By the time the producers decided to end Jag, it was a hit in 90 countries across the globe.

The series was a hit thanks to the excellent cast that stayed on strong for 10 long years and the Jag production team that did a fantastic job with their research, headliners, and naval crime authenticity.

The film shoot locations were strategically chosen according to the latest naval issues in the US and were portrayed perfectly over several years. The studio locations were incredibly realistic and matched their real-work locations perfectly.