From major box office hits to cult classics, Austin has provided a spectacular landscape for filmmakers to bring their vision to life. Visitors have flocked to destinations featured in iconic locally made films like "Dazed and Confused" and "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre." With over 50 years of production, there are many film tourism locations in the Austin area to experience including those seen in "What’s Eating Gilbert Grape."
About "What’s Eating Gilbert Grape"
The film that brought Leonardo DiCaprio and Johnny Depp to town, "What’s Eating Gilbert Grape" is a coming of age story that follows a young grocery store clerk in a small Midwestern town struggling to care for his intellectually disabled younger brother and obese mother, while also attempting to pursue his own happiness. Peter Hedges adapted his own novel for director Lasse Hallström. Hedges later said that Juliet Lewis' characterization of Becky was so authentic, that she could have written the character better than he did. The all-star supporting cast is a who’s-who of famous faces, including future "Step Brothers" stepmother Mary Steenburgen and stepson John C. Reilly. Set in the fictitious town of Endora, Iowa, the majority of "What’s Eating Gilbert Grape" was filmed in the Austin suburb of Manor, with a handful of scenes also shot in Georgetown, Pflugerville and Lockhart.
Details: Paramount Pictures / Rated PG-13 / 118 minutes / Drama
Director: Lasse Hallstrom
Cast: Johnny Depp, Leonardo DiCaprio, Juliette Lewis, Mary Steenburgen, Darlene Cates, Kevin Tighe, Crispin Glover and John C. Reilly
Streaming on: @Netflix, @PrimeVideo, @YouTube, @GooglePlay, @VuduFans, @iTunes, @RedBox, @MicrosoftStore, @FandangoNOW
Scene: Chasing Airstreams
Along a country road, Arnie (DiCaprio) chases after a convoy of Airstream trailers. One of the vehicles, owned by Becky’s (Lewis) Grandmother, breaks down on the side of the road.
Location: City of Manor Street (20117 Melber Lane, Manor, TX 78653)
Scene: Lamson’s Grocery in Downtown Endora
The fictional town of Endora, where the film takes place, was actually shot in downtown Manor. Lamson’s Grocery, where Gilbert (Depp) works and Arnie (DiCaprio) frequently visits, is actually Manor Grocery, where locals tell you about the time the all-star cast came to town.
Location: Manor Grocery (102 E Parsons St, Manor, TX 78653)
Scene: Climbing the Endora Water Tower
Throughout the film, Arnie (DiCaprio) is drawn to the Endora water tower. When Gilbert (Depp) sees a figure scaling the tower, he immediately knows it's his brother and runs after him. The Manor Water Tower that played for Endora is located in the center of town. Today, the tower is fenced off for public safety, but can be viewed from the street.
Location: Manor Water Tower (W Parsons St, Manor, TX 78653)
Scene: Carver’s Insurance
When Gilbert (Depp) finds himself in an entanglement with Betty Carver (Steenburgen), he is hesitant to accept her husband Ken’s (Tighe) offer to visit his insurance office. The Carver’s Insurance office featured in the film is located in the Kouri Building in Manor.
Location: Remember Me Tattoos (101 S Lexington St, Manor, TX 78653)
Scene: Becky’s Airstream Campsite
Gilbert’s (Depp) life takes a turn in the right direction when Becky (Lewis) and her grandmother roll into town on fumes and are forced to camp their Airstream beside a local pond.
Location: City of Manor Street (Schmidt Loop, Manor, TX 78653)
Iconic Filming Location Map
Explore more iconic filming locations during your next visit to Austin. The Austin Film Tourism Guide has details on the where scenes from your favorite movie and television series were filmed in and around Austin.