Forrest Gump is a 1994 comedy film, directed by Robert Zemeckis, starring Tom Hanks as Forrest Gump, a simple-minded, good-hearted man who happens to turn up at important events in the postwar history of the United States. It is based on the 1986 novel by Winston Groom.
|“||My mom always said life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get.||”|
—Often paraphrased as "Life is like a box of chocolates..."
The frame story of Forrest Gump takes place in the early 1980s, with Forrest sitting at a bus stop, telling the story of his life to strangers.
He grew up in his mother's boarding house in a small town in Alabama. Due to his low intelligence he was an outsider, but his talent for running gave him a career as an American football player for the college team. He later became a decorated soldier in the Vietnam War, and a table-tennis player, and seemingly by accident turned up at historical moments in the 1960s and 70s. Forrest has a complicated love story with his childhood friend Jenny; and he concludes the story by telling that he waits for the bus to visit her in hospital.
In hospital, Jenny tells Forrest that she has an incurable virus infection (implicitly HIV/AIDS) and that they share a son. Forrest and Jenny marry, though she dies one year later. In an epilogue, Forrest sends his son to school.
In 1994, Forrest Gump was the highest-grossing film in the United States (only beaten by The Lion King worldwide) and won five Academy Awards and several other recognitions.
- 1 Chippewa Square, Savannah, GA (Filming scene at north side of Chippewa Square along Hull St, facing Bull St). The square where Forrest waits for the bus, and tells the story of his life. Traffic was redirected and a faux bus stop was added for the recording. A replica of the bus stop bench is on display at the Visitors Center. The bench and filming spot was on the north side of the square.
- 3 Varnville, SC (On Route 68 about 35 miles northwest of Beaufort, South Carolina). Stand-in for the fictional town of Greenbow, Alabama where Forrest Gump is from. Several scenes from Gump's childhood in Greensbow, Alabama were filmed on Main St & Palmetto Ave just on the opposite side of the railroad tracks from US Hwy 278 (Carolina Ave), which is where the map marker is at.
- 4 Colleton Civic Center (formerly Hampton Street Elementary School), 494 Hampton Street, Walterboro, SC. , Forrest's elementary school.
- 5 Bluff Plantation, 3547 Combahee Rd, Yemassee, SC. , site of the Gump boarding house and Jenny's farmhouse where she lived in as a child. Both built for the filming, and torn down as the film was completed. The young Forrest wears leg braces, and his unusual gait inspires a traveling guitarist, who turns out to be Elvis Presley. The driveway into the property was the filming location where Forrest Gump begin to run to escape bullies who chased him as a child and again as a teenager while Jenny yells, "run Forrest run!" The entrance from the main road served as the school bus stop for young Forrest and where he sees his son off to school at the end of the movie. The plantation is private property and can only be seen from the main road.
- 6 Weingart Stadium, 1301 Av Cesar Chavez, Monterey Park, CA. Stand-in for the Bryant-Denny Stadium in the University of Alabama where Forrest played college football. The Stadium is at the East Los Angeles College campus.
- 7 Marks Hall, 631 Childs Way, Los Angeles, CA. on the campus of the University of Southern California, where Forrest came and have to wait outside, in front, of the building in the rain for Jenny. That's also where he confronts her boyfriend at that time for mistreating her.
- 8 Bovard Administration Building, 3551 Trousdale Parkway, Los Angeles, CA (Graduation scene filmed in front, between Bovard Bldg & Alumni Park). The front of the building on the campus of the University of Southern California serves as a backdrop, where Forrest walks across the stage to receive his diploma from the University of Alabama. Soon afterwards an army recruiter approaches to recruit him to join the army.
- 9 Ocean Creek Golf Course on Fripp Island and 10 Hunting Island State Park, SC, were settings of the Vietnam scenes. Mountains in the background were added with CGI.
- 11 Ebell of Los Angeles / Ebell Wilshire Theater, 743 S Lucerne St, Los Angeles CA (Wilshire & Lucerne Boulevard in midtown). Stand-in for the US Army hospital in Vietnam in which Gump and Lt Dan recover. The filming location is on the second floor along the east side of the building.
- 12 Lincoln Memorial, Washington DC. Where Forrest speaks to the anti-war protesters. The west side of the Lincoln Memorial was also a filming spot where he is met by a couple of hippie guys and hustled up to the stage to give a speech about the Vietnam war.
- 13 Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool, Washington DC. Where Forrest meets Jenny, once again, as he gives his speech from the Lincoln Memorial in front of the reflecting pool. The crowds were produced with the attendance of 1500 extras which were then multiplied to 100,000s by CGI around the Reflecting Pool.
- Ater meeting at the Reflecting pool Forrest and Jenny went for a walk along 14 Pennsylvania Ave in front of the White House and along 15 Maine Avenue SW by Floral Park, Washington DC to catch up and then he hands his Congressional Medal of Honor to Jenny. The park parking lot of Floral Park was where the buses lined up and where Forrest says "good bye" once again as Jenny boards her bus to Berkeley.
- 16 Cole’s French Dip Restaurant, 118 E 6th St, Los Angeles, CA (E 6th St between Main & Los Angeles in Pacific Electric Bldg). Location where Forrest meets up again with wheelchair-bound Lt Dan to celebrate New Year 1972. The exterior was also used as a facade of a filming studio where Forrest comes out and meets a wheelchair bound Lt Dan for the first time since they were in the hospital together. Lt Dan (Gary Sinise) is made "legless" with CGI. The location in downtown Los Angeles was filmed in place of New York City.
- 17 The Watergate Hotel, 2650 Virginia Ave NW, Washington, DC, toll-free: . In 1972 Forrest reports mysterious men with torches in the building opposite. The arrest lead up to Richard Nixon's resignation
- Alston Road, Lucy Point Creek, on Ladies Island just southeast of Beaufort. Nearby Port Royal, where Gump visits Bubba’s ‘Louisiana’ home, not in ‘Bayou La Batre’.
- 18 McPhersonville Church (Stony Creek Chapel), 155 County Rd S-25-286, Yemassee, SC. The "Four Square Church" Forrest went to while living in La Batre.
- 19 University of South Carolina Beaufort Performing Arts Center, 801 Carteret St, Beaufort, SC (Carteret & Washington St), ☏ . Location of the ribbon cutting ceremony to rededicate the 'Bayou La Batre Hospital' to become the 'Gump Medical Center' after Forrest made a huge donation to the hospital. The filming took place on the front lawn with the building as a backdrop for a "hospital".
As Jenny turns down Forrest's proposal for marriage, he begins running across the country. The following are the places filmed where he ran through:
- downtown Varnville
- Chowan Creek (or Cowan Creek) Bridge linking Ladies Island and St. Helena Island, east of downtown Beaufort, saying ‘Mississippi Welcomes You’
- Santa Monica Yacht Harbor, California on the west coast
- Marshall Point Lighthouse, near Point Clyde, Maine
- Cut Bank, Montana
- The bridge as St. Mary Entrance to Glacier National Park, north of Kalispell, Montana
- On the Woods Memorial Bridge where US21, Sea Island Parkway, crossing the Beaufort River east of Beaufort, Forrest is interviewed by reporters
- Grandfather Mountain near Linville, up near Asheville in North Carolina, the curve where Gump sees he has companions. The bend is now signposted as Forrest Gump Curve. The entrance to Grandfather Mountain (there’s an admission fee) is on US 221, about two miles north of Linville, and a mile south of the Blue Ridge Parkway, at milepost 305.
- North San Francisco Street, Flagstaff, Arizona, where Forrest steps into dog faeces and invents the phrase Shit Happens.
- Twin Arrows Trading Post, 20 miles east of Flagstaff, Arizona, where Forrest by accident creates the Smiley Face.
- Monument Valley in Arizona, where Forrest decides to go home, following 3 years, 2 months, 14 days and 16 hours of running.
- Bubba Gump Shrimp Co, (See or add to the 'Eat' section of the city (or neighborhood of a city) article where they are located at). Hours vary by location. The Bubba Gump Shrimp Co exists as restaurants in real life, in multiple locations throughout the U.S. (30+); Mexico (4); Japan (3), and one each in Hong Kong, London England, Edmonton Canada; Marianas; Makati City-Metro Manila, Philippines; and Doha Qatar. The restaurants are operated by Landry's Restaurant Co (for operations) in partnership with Viacom (owner of Paramount Pictures for franchising the theme). The Bubba Gump Shrimp Co is named after the film's characters Benjamin Buford "Bubba" Blue and Forrest Gump. In the film, Bubba suggested getting in the shrimping business and, ultimately, Forrest pursued the idea after Bubba's death in the Vietnam War. The interior decor include memorabilia and pictures from the movie, while the menu is themed from the movie such as Jenny’s Catch and the restaurant’s bestseller, Forrest’s Seafood Feast, with shrimp as the main dish. While waiting, guests can play the Forrest Gump trivia and if they need the server's attention, they can hold up the "Stop, Forrest, Stop" sign.
The below are locally owned restaurants that were used as filming locations but still functions as a restaurant:
- 1 Cole's French Dip Sandwiches (Cole's Pacific Electric Buffet), 118 E 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90014 (between Main and Los Angeles), ☏ . M-Th 4PM-2AM, F noon-2AM, Sa Su 11AM-2AM. Bar/restaurant in nearly continuous operation since 1908. Along with Philippe The Original, one of the possible originators of the French Dip sandwich. Sandwiches $9-11.
- 2 Debi's/Laurie's Restaurant, 10 W State St, Savannah, GA 31401 (W State & Bull St, NW of Wright Square), ☏ . Daily 7AM-10:45 AM and 11AM-2:45PM. Southern style cooking for breakfast & lunch. They also have a more prominent location on 225 E Bay St near the waterfront as Debi's at Bay in real life. This location served as the diner where Jenny worked as a waitress in the film.
- 3 Love's Seafood Restaurant, 6817 Chief of Love Rd, Savannah, GA 31419 (Turn-off from Ogeechee Rd (US Hwy 17) north of the Ogeechee River), ☏ . Tu-Sa 5PM-10PM; Su 12PM-9PM. Specializes in southern style seafood and steak for dinner. The venue stood in as "Loves Truck Stop" and strip club where Jenny worked as an entertainer. In real life the restaurant atmosphere is nothing like in the film and is more family friendly.