Maxey took advantage of the classic Craftsman architecture prevalent in the Travis Heights neighborhood of South Austin and the adjacent idyllic Stacy Park to highlight the film’s timeless feel. By using a pre-defined color scheme, the art department was able to seamlessly blend the bedroom/hallway/bathroom set, built on stage at Austin Studios, with the interiors and exteriors of the practical Forrester House that were shot on location at a real residence in the Northwest Hills neighborhood.
Twitch’s house was found in that same neighborhood when location scouts discovered a recently sold home that was about to go through major renovations. The production came in and constructed the kitchen set (specific to the scene that allowed Techno Mouth to hang from the rafters) inside the shell of the home.
Maxey’s team also constructed an elaborate dilapidated bait shack in Austin and trucked it to the Blue Hole location, about an hour away in the Texas Hill Country. The formerly private natural swimming hole was recently donated to the City of Wimberley with the intention of making it into an official park.
“The whole final sequence was shot in the most beautiful place with a swimming hole right beside us all the time,” comments Dolman. “The weather was between 95 and 105 degrees and all the boys could think about was that river.”
“You could practically see the sirens calling them,” laughs producer Mark Johnson. “But they have a professional job acting in a movie. It was difficult for them, in this idyllic setting with a river going by. They just wanted to get done with their scene so they could run over there and throw rocks in the water and poke something with a stick. Yet you can't do it, you're working. It so goes against what being a kid is.”
The filmmakers managed to keep the cast out of the water during the shooting day, but they were allowed to swim after wrap in the evenings. “The water was so clear!” exclaims Hallie Kate Eisenberg. “At the end of the week, Ryan and I pushed our director in the water and then all of the kids jumped in. There was even a huge tree that we all climbed and jumped off of into the freezing water.”