My favorite Southern homes in the movies almost always have white columns and high ceilings. I love old-fashioned things, especially period movies where they recreate bygone years with historic houses and pretty attire. Here is a list of my ten favorite residences set in Southern towns.
10) Tim Riggins’s season four home on TV’s Friday Night Lights (2006-Present) is a trailer located in a place where a breeze is always blowing. He has a simple little chair where he sits in his yard and sips bottled beer. It looks so peaceful. The landscape reminds me of that Tim McGraw song Where the Green Grass Grows. I’d love to live in that calm, rural setting. The show is filmed in Austin, Texas.
9) Okay, so The Golden Girls (1985-1992) was set in Miami, and though it’s the southernmost of all the places I mention here, I’m not sure it’s considered The South. If it is, then I must include the home of Dorothy, Rose, Blanche and Sophia on this list. I love the sunny kitchen, but my favorite part is the beautiful lanai. It looks like a great place for a barbeque and relaxation after a tough day at work.
8) The Family That Preys (2008) is set in Atlanta and filmed in Georgia and Louisiana. I love the old white-columned mansion where the Cartwright family lives. It’s immaculate inside and out.
7) Julia Sugarbaker’s regal Southern house is beautiful. It’s the place from which she runs her interior design business in Designing Women (1986-1993). On the TV show, the house is the old family home of the Sugarbakers. Most of the show’s action takes place in what looks to be the front room or parlor. It’s decorated with plants and pretty end tables. The TV show is set in Atlanta, but I believe the real-life house is in Arkansas.
6) The Torkelsons (1991-1993) is one of my all-time favorite TV shows, and I always wanted to see the view from Dorothy Jane Torkelson’s window seat. The house is old fashioned and boasts high ceilings and a huge front porch. All of the rooms looked spacious. Twelve-year-old Steven Floyd even had his own tree house in the yard. How charming.
5) In the movie Sweet Home Alabama (2002), the house I loved best was the old home of the Carmichaels, a family of plantation owners. It’s the home that Reese Witherspoon’s character pretended she grew up in rather than the double wide where she actually lived. The house has beautiful columns in front and what looks to be an extensive property surrounding it (duh, it’s a plantation!).
4) I have to include Tara from Gone with the Wind (1939) on this list. Remember that pretty scene of Mr. O’Hara and Scarlett standing under a tree as they looked across their massive estate? Remember how idealistic Tara was in the background with no hardworking slaves in the fields and no loud cracking of a horse whip? I do. And I love that shot of their home place. It looked so peaceful. Tara was part of a movie set built in California, and the movie was filmed there as well. No one actually lives in the house.
3) I’ll take Twelve Oaks Plantation from Gone with the Wind (1939) over the more popular Tara Plantation from the same film. Let’s see, Twelve Oaks gets five points above Tara for its beautiful tree-lined driveway. Plus another one hundred points for the spacious interior and the grand staircase.
2) Guess which home was my favorite in Fried Green Tomatoes (1991). No, not the home where Idgie and Ruth lived together. No, not Idgie’s family’s home. The home I love from Fried Green Tomatoes is the place where Ruth lived with her husband and mother. One of the things I love best about the house is the rural setting. The red clay in the front yard reminds me of the clay landscape of the Georgia Piedmont. The staircase inside the house and the hard wooden floors remind me of an antebellum house I’ve visited in Athens, Georgia. In the story, the home was located in Valdosta, GA, but I think most of the movie was filmed in several small towns throughout the state.
1) In Forrest Gump (1994), the title character’s home looks like it should be featured in Southern Living. It has a beautiful, spacious front porch that is ideal for rocking chairs. The yard is full of pretty grass and moss covered trees. I’d love to live there. Hell, I wouldn’t mind living on that park bench where Forest Gump sits for those scenes filmed in Savannah, GA. I read that the house was actually located in South Carolina and that it was built for the film and later torn down.
Overall, do you think I got it right? Which homes would you include on this list?
Gone With the Wind (1939).
Forrest Gump (1994).
Sweet Home Alabama (2002).
Friday Night Lights (2010).
The Golden Girls (1987).
The Torkelsons (1991).
Fried Green Tomatoes (1991).
The Family that Preys (2008).