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John Travolta and Oliver Stone in Dana Point Filming 'Savages'

The superstar and Oscar-winning director were in Dana Point on Tuesday and Wednesday filming the movie about two marijuana growers chased by a Mexican cartel.

Mega movie star John Travolta and Oscar-winning producer/director Oliver Stone were quietly filming their new movie, Savages, in Dana Point this week.

The crime drama is based on the bestselling book by Don Winslow that focuses on the relationship between best friends and Laguna pot growers Chon and Ben, who live a cozy life with their girlfriend O.

Deadline.com says, "Their pot is so good that the Mexican cartel tries to coerce them into working for the cartel. When they refuse, the cartel kidnaps O and charges a heavy ransom to get her back. The growers pay the ransom by covertly ripping off the cartel’s own shipments, a most dangerous game."

The movie is scheduled to be released sometime in 2012 and also stars Salma Hayek, Uma Thurman and Blake Lively.

According to Deadline.com, Travolta will play Dennis, a burned-out DEA agent, and Thurman will play the mom, Paqu, of Lively's character, O. 

Deadline.com reported in April that they "join Taylor Kitsch, who’ll play the role of former Navy SEAL Chon (Kitsch has already begun training with the real SEALs); Aaron Johnson, who plays the role of Ben; Hayek, who’ll play the role of Mexican cartel queen-pin Elena; and Benicio Del Toro, who'll play the vicious cartel enforcer Lado."

The script is by Winslow and Shane Salerno.

According to Christy Teague, economic development director for the city of Dana Point, permits for filming were approved a few months ago. The areas they requested permits for were near Baby Beach and at the old arches.

"On Wednesday, they were shooting by the old arches left from the former Dana Point Inn up on the cliffs," said Teague. "They wanted to shoot the areas that were true to the book and started working with us a few months ago."

Teague said the crew was very "respectful of residents and the city" and had "eaten in many of Dana Point's local restaurants, as well as stayed in the area's hotels."

She added that the film wrapped up its location work in Dana Point late Wednesday and that she believed the filmmakers were headed next to Torrance.

"Most of the film, I believe, is being shot in L.A., but it is nice that Dana Point will be in the film and on stage to show all the world what a pretty place it is."

Teague mentioned that the city suggested that filming start after Labor Day so there wouldn't be as many crowds or disruptions.

She said permit requests to film in Dana Point are usually submitted by people who are either making commercials or who want to use the city in advertisements. Some scenes of the 2000 George Clooney movie The Perfect Storm were also filmed in Dana Point.

"The crew and cast were all very nice, and it was pretty quiet,' she said of the latest filming. "Not many people knew about it."

When asked if she met Travolta, she said she "only got a glimpse, but it was all very exciting."

Universal Pictures is financing and distributing the film, which began production in early July.

Tom Berney September 08, 2011 at 10:42 PM
What a great choice putting Salma Hayek as the narco queen , that's a role she would be perfect in, a Latin girl with beauty and attitude, sounds like a must see, can't wait.

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