Let Me Help You With That Roadside Location Shoot (Movies on Route 66)

Hi there,
Thanks for stopping in to give us a once over and maybe take a moment to kick the tires - as it were. (There really are tires, but that's another story - feel free to ask.) What you are looking at is a Valentine Diner - an "Aristocrat" model to be specific.

VALENTINE DINERS - A Thumbnail History:
Valentines were the ONLY diners manufactured west of the Mississippi and they were small, 8 to 10 seats typically. Kinda cozy, but just the place for a discreet meeting or an out of the way rendezvous. At one time, there were a couple thousand Valentines spread mostly throughout the American southwest. These days, it might be easier to stumble on Forrest Fenn's treasure than finding an authentic Valentine diner.

But before Fenn buried his treasure, I found mine - this roadside relic, sitting on a windswept, vacant lot in Magdalena, New Mexico. She has since been in film, video, catalog and art shoots - and can be in your shoot too.
Search "Red Top Diner" images and you'll see a lot of shots from different folks. There's some pretty cool artistry out there.

Besides the Red Top, there are only three or four other Valentine Aristocrats in the entire universe. One is inside the American Antique Auto Museum in Hershey, PA, one is the Triangle APD sub-station in Albuquerque, NM, and the other is inside "The Diner" in Lake City, CO. It was originally the Tic-Toc Diner in Albuquerque.

Diners make any scripted setting better.
No? Yes? Examples? Well here's a few:
Reservoir Dogs, Breaking Bad, Star Wars, When Harry Met Sally, Pulp Fiction, (Tarantino loves them diners, don't he?), The Sopranos, Grapes of Wrath, Goodfellas and on and on. One of my absolute favorites is Coffee and Cigarettes. And how 'bout Aretha Frankiln in the Blues Brothers? What a dynamite Performance! Bless her heart - she was the greatest.
But you get the picture. The most nefarious plans have been drawn up, the best of life's "ah ha's" realized and the strangest of paths crossed - in diners.

There are a lot of faux "50's" diners, and there's a place for them too, but the roadside diner is not about poodle skirts or malted crèmes. This IS the real deal; grits, grime and the unmistakable patina of time.

Not crazy about being tied to the Red Top name or art in your production? No problem. She can be renamed and repainted to your specification. She's no larger than many other set pieces.

Don't want to pay the costs of shutting a busines down while you're shooting? The Red Top is dedicated for set use and short term rentals. It's your time and schedule that matters.


* THE RED TOP DINER is located in the main parking lot of Wildlife West Nature Park, the kind folk who allow us to "stretch our wings." There is plenty of room to accomodate you and your cast and crew.

* WILDLIFE WEST is a 122 acre nature park, enhanced zoo and entertainment venue located at 87 N Frontage Rd, Edgewood, New Mexico, 87015. You can check them out at wildlifewestdotorg.

* ROUTE 66 and I-40 lie directly to the south, and another alignment of The Mother Road lies to the north a few blocks, and probably some more in between. The community of Edgewood was born when the new highway opened.
Here's an interesting fact: "Route 66," the television drama (1960 to 1964,) was shot entirely on location in states across the country and even Mexico. Yet, there were only a few rare scenes that were actually filmed on Route 66 itself. Maybe some new cinematographer could remedy that.

Red Top Rates are fair and flexible. Available by the hour, (four hour min.) day, week or contracted terms.

We are indy community friendly.

Feel free to contact Jerry at 515.1133

  • do NOT contact me with unsolicited services or offers

post id: 6921680036



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