Lee Pace and Matt Damon in Universal Pictures’ The Good Shepherd – 2006

Our nation’s capital is no stranger to film crews, which flock to the city to capture its long list of famous monuments and locations. From the Roman-inspired columns of the White House to the attractions on the National Mall, this city has seen countless productions use its alleys and byways. Political and historical movies like Oliver Stone’s Nixon (1995) have taken advantage of the steps at the Lincoln Memorial and the Watergate complex was the scene of the crime in Alan Pakula’s All The President’s Men (1976). On the non-political side, William Friedkin’s The Exorcist made famous use of the city’s Georgetown neighborhood, and Union Station was featured prominently in Alfred Hitchcock’s Strangers On A Train. Robert De Niro joined these prestigious ranks when his latest movie, The Good Shepherd, filmed at Capitol Hill in 2005.Founded in 1790, the “Federal City” is governed by a local municipality—with certain exceptions under the jurisdiction of the nation’s government. For moviemakers, that means acquiring special permitting at the U.S. Capitol Building and the most-desired monuments. But don’t fret: It’s all funneled through the D.C. Office of Motion Picture & Television Development. Permits and free parking, guidelines and location assistance are all part of the package. The film office’s online Production Resource Guide supplies the contact information for everything from local sound stages to animal talent, and its crew list helps moviemakers find professionals for most production positions.

Other politically-charged movies shot on location in Washington, D.C. include:

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington


A Few Good Men

The Pelican Brief


More information may be found here.

Sound Off: Woody Allen knows how to film the beauty of New York City and Peter Jackson always takes our breath away shooting New Zealand landscapes. What movie and/or director do you find best demonstrates his or her passion for Washington, D.C.?