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Lights, Camera, Action!

From historical landmarks to breathtaking views, the Cape and Islands are the perfect locations for television and movies. Many productions have been filmed in the area, ranging from well-known comedies to legendary classics. While things may change over time, the area continues to be the perfect backdrop for Hollywood productions.

American Horror Story, known as AHS, is currently being filmed in Provincetown. Now in its tenth season, this popular show is released every fall and is known for its anthology of thrilling stories. This season is entitled “Pilgrim,” and will be shot from January through March. While the plot is still unknown, Provincetown is sure to be the perfect setting for this show!

The most well-known movie to be filmed on the Cape & Islands region is Jaws. The blockbuster film, released in 1975, is the story of a shark and the small island community it terrorizes. The movie was filmed in various locations throughout Martha’s Vineyard as well as in Falmouth. One of the most recognizable sites is the American Legion Memorial Bridge, which sits between Oak Bluffs and Edgartown and is now often referred to as the "Jaws bridge."

Jaws Movie Poster from Martha's Vineyard film
Jaws, courtesy of

Much of Jaws was filmed in Menemsha which is a small, fishing village on the western side of the island in the town of Chilmark.

Much of Jaws was filmed in Menemsha
Menemsha village; photo courtesy of property 17189

Want to explore more of Martha's Vineyard? Join us as we explore the various towns on this magical island.

But this is not the only movie to be filmed in the area. Over 25 movies have been filmed entirely or in part in the area. Of course, not all were blockbusters, but below are just a few:

Year by the Sea

Released in 2017, Year by the Sea includes the National Seashore among its Cape filming locations. Based on Joan Anderson’s memoir, the film is about an empty nester who retreats to Cape Cod to reclaim the person she was before marriage and children.

Rip Van Winkle

Rip Van Winkle, the story of a man who slept for 20 years and awakens to find a very different world, was filmed in Barnstable in 1903.

The Finest Hours

The Finest Hours will star Chris Pine, Casey Affleck, and Holliday Granger. Based on the book by Casey Sherman (Barnstable High School ’87) and Michael J. Tougias, The Finest Hours chronicles the February 1952 events of two oil tankers, the SS Pendletonand the SS Fort Mercer. The two ships encountered one of the worst storms to ever hit New England, and due to rough seas both tankers were literally broken in half ten miles off the coast of Chatham. What followed was an extraordinary and heroic rescue of the crewmen by the US Coast Guard.

The Finest Hours being filmed on Cape Cod
The Finest Hours being filmed on Cape Cod

One Crazy Summer

The 80’s film, One Crazy Summer, starred John Cusak and Demi Moore and was filmed almost entirely on Nantucket.


A 1995 remake of a 1954 original, Sabrina, with Harrison Ford and Julia Ormond, is a love story with a twist and was filmed in Chilmark and Vineyard Haven on Martha’s Vineyard. The cottage used in the film once belonged to Billy Joel and overlooks Chilmark Harbor.

The Light Keepers

The 2009 film, The Light Keepers, filmed on location throughout Cape Cod, has a large number of scenes filmed at Race Point Light in Provincetown and Chatham Light. The story line follows a lightkeeper who does not want to associate with women, but he is forced to reconsider when two female visitors move into a cottage nearby for the summer.

Race Point Light in Provincetown
Race Point Light in Provincetown

That's My Boy

The 2012 movie, That's My Boy, starring Adam Sandler, features a replica of Fenway Park’s left field wall, the Green Monster. It was built at Dennis Middle School, and the cast and crew spent about two weeks filming on location in Dennis.

Replica of Fenway Park’s Green Monster
Replica of Fenway Park’s Green Monster

Before embarking on your next Cape and Islands vacation, rent a few of these films, and then see if you can scout out some of the movie locations while visiting. If you are a real movie buff, consider renting a home that features a media room or entertainment center ( Eastham Vacation Rental - ID 28900, Siasconset Vacation Rental - ID 12838, Orleans Vacation Rental - ID 16720, Nantucket Vacation Rental - ID 21041.) Then you can watch these movies (and others) in a theater-like atmosphere while vacationing on the Cape and Islands!

Enjoy a movie while munching popcorn in this home theater located in Oak Bluffs - Vacation Rental - ID 28062

You may not give all these movies two thumbs up, but when you choose one of’s rental homes for your next vacation, you will certainly give your vacation two thumbs up!

About Becky Fischer

About Becky Fischer: I have worked for since 2003. Currently my position entails providing photography, video, and consultation services to vacation rental homeowners, and I have photographed over 700 homes on the Cape and Islands. My husband and three children moved to Brewster in 2006. I grew up outside of Boston, spent summer vacations on Nantucket, and was married in Orleans. My favorite activities on the Cape are walking on the CCRT, deep breaths at the beach, visiting great coffee shops, and working with my community to support the schools and local events.