Prop houses for every type of film fan
Like the wild love child of a Las Vegas casino and a Los Angeles strip mall, Nick Metropolis Collectible Furniture is filled to the brim with pop-culture relics. Owner Nick Metropolis—indeed his real name—refers to himself as the king of collectibles, and it’s difficult to dispute that title as you navigate a tent filled with a jumble of illuminated letters and a teetering tangle of Hollywood Sign knockoffs in this tight corner lot.
Oceanic Arts’ collection is less focused on the silver screen and more on tiki establishments. For six decades, it’s outfitted popular locales, from pioneering spots such as Trader Vic’s and Don the Beachcomber to Disneyland, with nautical accessories, tropical bird replicas and all things bamboo. Walk into the Whittier shop and it feels as though every tiki-bar enthusiast in SoCal has picked up decor from its distressed wooden shelves.
Ghoulish and grisly decorations aren’t just for Halloween. At Dapper Cadaver, you’ll find shelves stocked with a mix of human dummies and fantastical creatures—everything from mermaid skeletons to facsimile skins straight from the “butcher shop.” When a forensic scene shows up on a crime procedural or body parts are shown on Stranger Things, chances are they’ve come from this shop.
Anyone who’s ever moved to a new apartment can tell you books are heavy. That’s why you’ll find hollowed-out editions alongside stacks of overstocked paperbacks at Faux Library Studio Props. Curio-cluttered shelves coexist with mod desk sets in the North Hollywood warehouse; an assortment of library sets across time and continents creates a wonderland of literary trimmings.
When productions need spot-on period-piece props, they turn to History for Hire. As its name implies, the North Hollywood warehouse strives for accuracy in films with everything from 1920s movie cameras to midcentury cereal boxes. The prop house even runs its own research library where clients can flip through old issues of Life or a classic Sears catalog for inspiration.
Looking for more behind-the-scenes peeks at moviemaking magic?
From Culver City to Hollywood, take a peek behind the soundstage doors with these studio tours in Los Angeles.