Where was The Last Days of American Crime filmed? The Johannesburg City Filming Locations

Édgar Ramírez as Graham Bricke
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The Last Days of American Crime was actually not shot in America: All the filming locations are set across the South African cities of Johannesburg and Cape Town.

The plot revolves around a bank robber played by Édgar Ramírez, best-known for his role as Gianni Versace in the American Crime Story series. He decides to commit the mother of all the heists before the US government deploys the American Peace Initiative (API), a system that triggers a signal inhibiting criminal activity.

But, in which city is The Last Days of American Crime set? The filmmakers avoided to be explicit about the location where the action takes place. However, they give us some clues: There is a scene with Shelby (Anna Brewster) switching on the hacking app where we can see a glimpse of the Upper and Lower Peninsulas of Michigan. Also the Ambassador Bridge seems to be inspired by the Gordie Howe International Bridge between Detroit and Windsor, Ontario.

The Last Days of American Crime city
The opening scene was filmed in downtown Johannesburg. Graham gets out the bombed flat blocks near The Majestic Bar in Joubert St. The next shot with the striptease girl was filmed two blocks away from there in Harrison St near the Nelson Mandela Building. This street appears again later on in the car chase sequence.
(You can open all the locations on Google Maps clicking on the links below in the captions ↴)
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


Robbery scene
The robbery scene was shot at the National Bank Building (or the Corner House) located in Simmonds St near the Johannesburg Library. Declared a national monument, this Victorian neo-classical building was opened in 1905. Image courtesy of Netflix and Google Maps


Ponte Apartments
Graham's block of flats exteriors are the Ponte City Apartments, a 1975 cylinder-shaped skyscraper, located in the Berea neighbourhood of Johannesburg. Image courtesy of Netflix and Geoffrey Hancock - Map


The Last Days of American Crime drehort
The Lido Bar is actually situated in the centre of Cape Town, more than 870 miles away from Johannesburg.
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


Mutual Building Cape Town
Bricke meets the government official, Jack Morgan, in the Mutual Building at 14 Darling St near the Cape Town City Hall. This beautiful 1940 art deco structure is shaped like a Babilonic ziggurat. It features an impressive entrance lobby and an external frieze depicting scenes from the colonial history of South Africa.
Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


Los últimos días del crimen ciudad
The API signal tower is Johannesburg's Hillbrow Tower. The building coordinates on the screen of the laptop (44.1526 N 85.5862 W at 660 Regiment Avenue) are actually pointing to somewhere in the middle of nowhere in Tustin, Michigan. Image courtesy of Netflix - Map


The border bridge with Canada
But where is the cable-stayed bridge that we see in the movie? This establishing shot was filmed where the Ambassador Bridge between Detroit and Windsor stands (the GM Renaissance Center and Belle Isle appear in the background). However, the design of the bridge is completely different, superimposed to the image via CGI effects.

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2 comments

  1. The bridge seems to be the Ambassador Bridge between Detroit Mi. and Canada. Detroit on left Canada on right. The island at top of picture is Detroit's Belle Isle.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Debra! But read the update: The filmmakers changed the Ambassador Bridge for another one.

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