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Universal Studios Hollywood - Backlot -
Court of Miracles

Named after either The Miracle Man (1919) or, more likely, after the place name used for it in The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923) (the Court of Miracles is said to be "a city of thieves; a hideous blot on the face of Paris") this historic corner of the backlot has been visited by most of the classic Universal horror monsters, including Dracula (Bela Lugosi), the Wolfman (Lon Chaney Jr.) and the Hunchback of Notre Dame (Lon Chaney Sr.). Frankenstein's Monster made his first appearance here in 1931.

However, the sets currently on display were built around 1967 after the previous Little Europe / Court of Miracles sets were destroyed in a devastating fire. None of the original 1920/1930 sets survive.

The movable fibreglass fountain currently in the middle of the square has been used in many productions including Cloak & Dagger and Murder She Wrote.

Photo Gallery (after 1967 fire)

Court of Miracles Photo Gallery

1 - The Court of Miracles as it appears now, seen from the perspective of the VIP Experience tour. Photo © Universal Studios
1 - The Court of Miracles as it appears now, seen from the perspective of the VIP Experience tour. Photo © Universal Studios
 2 - The Court of Miracles - Photo © Universal Studios
2 - The Court of Miracles - Photo © Universal Studios
 3 - The Court of Miracles, September 2009 (c) theStudioTour.com
3 - The Court of Miracles, September 2009 (c) theStudioTour.com
 4 - The Court of Miracles, September 2009 (c) theStudioTour.com
4 - The Court of Miracles, September 2009 (c) theStudioTour.com
 5 - The Court of Miracles in more colorful mood - Photo (c) Bernard Wee, 1999
5 - The Court of Miracles in more colorful mood - Photo (c) Bernard Wee, 1999
 6 - The Court of Miracles, September 2009 (c) theStudioTour.com
6 - The Court of Miracles, September 2009 (c) theStudioTour.com
 7 - A GlamorTram weaves its way through The Court of Miracles in this posed publicity shot. The tram never actually enters the Court of Miracles. (From Inside Universal Studios, 1968)
7 - A GlamorTram weaves its way through The Court of Miracles in this posed publicity shot. The tram never actually enters the Court of Miracles. (From Inside Universal Studios, 1968)
 8 - Fountain at the Court of Miracles (September 2006)
8 - Fountain at the Court of Miracles (September 2006)
 9 - Fountain at the Court of Miracles (September 2006)
9 - Fountain at the Court of Miracles (September 2006)
 10 - Looking back on th Court of Miracles - Photo (c) thestudiotour.com, April 2006
10 - Looking back on th Court of Miracles - Photo (c) thestudiotour.com, April 2006
 11 - Photo (c) theStudioTour.com, April 2006
11 - Photo (c) theStudioTour.com, April 2006
 12 - Photo (c) theStudioTour.com, April 2006
12 - Photo (c) theStudioTour.com, April 2006
 13 - Photo (c) theStudioTour.com, April 2006
13 - Photo (c) theStudioTour.com, April 2006
 14 - Fountain at the Court of Miracles (September 2006)
14 - Fountain at the Court of Miracles (September 2006)
 15 - Newly rebuilt Court of Miracles, April 1968 (photo by Nick DeWolf)
15 - Newly rebuilt Court of Miracles, April 1968 (photo by Nick DeWolf)
 16 - The Court of Miracles in the early 1980s (courtesy Bob Bergen, from http://www.bobbergen.com/universaltour.htm)
16 - The Court of Miracles in the early 1980s (courtesy Bob Bergen, from http://www.bobbergen.com/universaltour.htm)
 

Photo Gallery (1964 - 1967)

The European village area was destroyed in the 1967 backlot fire. The gallery above shows how it looks today.

Photos coming soon

Seen on Screen: Universal Studios Hollywood [Court of Miracles]

TitleReleasedDirectorIMDB
The Miracle Man [Feature Film]1919George Loane TuckerIMDB Database page about The Miracle Man
Court of Miracles
The Hunchback of Notre Dame [Feature Film]1923Wallace WorsleyIMDB Database page about The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Court of Miracles, Little Europe
Frankenstein [Feature Film]1931James WhaleIMDB Database page about Frankenstein
Many of the exteriors of the village were shot on the Little Europe sets at Universal, including the Court of Miracles {The townspeople of Goldstadt celebrated the wedding of Henry Frankenstein to Elizabeth in this square. ). However, they're not the same sets that can be seen today - all of todays Little Europe was built in 1967 after a huge fire destroyed the vintage sets.
Many scenes that look like exteriors were shot on soundstages (there are some unfortunate ripples of backcloths which give away the interior shooting, and footsteps that sound like wooden staging not outdoor rocks and mud). The highly theatrical backdrops with dramatic skies helped to set the atmosphere of exaggerated reality.
The huge Laboratory set was built on Stage 12 at Universal Studios Hollywood. The stage had been built in 1929. The electrical machinery in Dr Frankenstein's laboratory was provided by Kenneth Strickfaden. The same machinery reappeared years later in the fabulous Mel Brooks homage Young Frankenstein
The Vampire Bat [Feature Film]1933Frank R. StrayerIMDB Database page about The Vampire Bat
Court of Miracles
The Bride of Frankenstein [Feature Film]1935James WhaleIMDB Database page about The Bride of Frankenstein
Court of Miracles, Little Europe, Stage 12 (Laboratory set), Stage 28 (special effects stage - used for filming miniatures of the laboratory exterior and destruction of the laboratory)
Lady Godiva [Feature Film]1955Arthur LubinIMDB Database page about Lady Godiva
Court of Miracles
Moonlighting [TV Series]1985 - 1989Glenn Gordon CaronIMDB Database page about Moonlighting
Atomic Shakespeare episode was filmed at the Court of Miracles on the Universal backlot. Stage 747 was also used.
Mafia! [Feature Film]1997Jim AbrahamsIMDB Database page about Mafia!
Court of Miracles, Brownstone Street
Charlie's Angels [Feature Film]2000McGIMDB Database page about Charlie
Falls Lake, Court of Miracles (Damn You Salazar scene)

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The business side of Brownstone Street in April 2006

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