During my most recent adventure to Southern California, I spent an afternoon at the world-famous Warner Bros. Studios in Burbank and experienced their VIP Studio Tour; which gives you a behind-the-scenes look at the making of some of your favourite film and television shows.
The two and a quarter hour tour departs roughly every fifteen minutes or so between 08:15 and 16:00 Monday through Saturday, whilst availability on Sundays is limited.
At $54 per-person, I thought the tour was money-well-spent and would certainly recommend it to any tourist or movie-lover.
Upon arrival, I took the opportunity to take a couple of photos before making my way into the Tour Store and Center to pick-up my ticket and browse through the gift shop. There is certainly a lot of merchandise, including items from Friends, The Ellen Show, Harry Potter and Looney Tunes - so I had to pick up a couple of things. You'll also find a Starbucks Coffee outlet and Gelato counter inside, and the Studio Plaza Cafe is just next-door.
When my tour number was called, I made my way into a small auditorium to watch a short film introducing the history of Warner Bros. and the studio itself before being escorted by my tour guide onto 12-person trams and setting off on a two-hour adventure. Photography is allowed during certain portions of the tour, but if you visit a soundstage that is home to a current production; then it's a strict no-no.
Beginning with a trip around the backlot, the tram took me along a number of streets which were easily recognisable from some of your favourite movies and TV shows, including The Big Bang Theory and Friends. Speaking of which, I actually got to sit on the sofa on the Central Perk coffee house set!
I also got to visit a warehouse home to many vehicles from your favourite movies, including the Batmobile!
This was then followed by a visit to the Warner Bros. Museum; which was arguably one of the highlights of the tour. Housed on two floors, the museum is home to many costume and props from recent Warner Bros. movies - including The Great Gatsby and Gravity.
Following twenty-minutes or so in the museum, my tour was lucky enough to walk onto some of the many soundstages within the 110-acre lot. As I mentioned before, I could not take photos in any area which is home to a current production, but it was pretty cool to walk onto the set of The Mentalist and The Big Bang Theory. Unfortunately, The Ellen Show was taping their season finale on the day I visited, so I couldn't see the set - oh well.
After walking through a couple of soundstages, it was time to head back to the Tour Centre & Store as my time was up. I had a fantastic time looking around the Warner Bros. lot, and the VIP Studio Tour was a lot of fun. My tour guide was very informative and encouraged the group to ask questions. If you would like to experience the magic of Warner Bros. for yourself; head-on over to the Warner Bros. Studio Tour website and take a look!
Before I left, I couldn't help but get a photo by a certain Looney Tunes character...