Syfy Insider Exclusive

Create a free profile to get unlimited access to exclusive videos, sweepstakes, and more!

Sign Up For Free to View
SYFY WIRE twister

Where Was Twisters Filmed? Real-Life Tornado Season Impacted the Shoot

Director Lee Isaac Chung wanted to shoot the movie here for authenticity. That proved challenging. 

By James Grebey
Daisy Edgar-Jones, Glen Powell, and Director Lee Isaac Chung on the set of Twisters

Twisters, this summer’s blockbuster disaster movie, promises to lay waste to the plains of Oklahoma as stars Glen Powell and Daisy Edgar-Jones attempt to tackle some of the most destructive weather you’ve ever seen on the big screen. But, where was Twisters filmed in real life? Turns out that the movie was largely shot in the state where it takes place, Oklahoma. That ended up being difficult because of real-life bad weather. 

Twisters, the standalone sequel to the 1996 movie Twister, opens in theaters on July 19. 

Where was Twisters filmed?

While parts of the movie were filmed in Los Angeles — not unusual for a Hollywood blockbuster — a lot of it was filmed in Oklahoma. Several scenes were shot in downtown Oklahoma City, and other filming locations included Chickasha, El Reno, Okarche, Midwest City, Yukon, and Cashion.

Principle photography began in May 2023 in Oklahoma City and was suspended in July due to the Screen Actors Guild strike. It resumed in November and wrapped before the end of the year. 

Glen Powell Calls Twisters a "Standalone" Movie
Glen Powell Explains Crazy Practical Twisters Stunts
Twister Star Bill Paxton Had an Idea for a Sequel — Years Before Twisters

According to The Oklahoman, there was talk of shooting the film in Georgia, where many movies are filmed, but director Lee Isaac Chung insisted that it be shot in the Sooner State. Chung, who previously directed the Oscar-nominated drama Minari, is from Arkansas, itself a state inside what’s known as Tornado Alley, and his childhood experience with tornados drew him to Twisters in the first place. 

Where was the original Twister filmed?

Bill Paxton and Helen Hunt as Jo Harding in the action thriller "Twister"

Jan de Bont, director of the ‘90s Twister, similarly insisted that the movie be shot in Oklahoma. However, de Bont had a different problem with the state’s weather than Chung did. The weather was unusually nice when filming Twister, which proved problematic when what they needed to film was darkened, stormy skies. To get around this, de Bont filmed dark skies in other states where the weather was worse and used bright lighting in close-ups of his actors to make the skies behind them seem darker in contrast. These lights temporarily blinded stars Bill Paxton and Helen Hunt

Powell and Edgar-Jones didn’t get blinded filming Twisters, but the weather was bad. 

“It was tough,” Chung told Empire. “The unpredictability of the weather caused a lot of issues and delays. It was my choice to do this in tornado season, but honestly, I still can’t believe we actually did it.”

"We kept getting shut down by weather. There were so many lightning delays. We got shut down by high winds multiple times,” Chung elaborated in an interview with Total Film. “I kept on talking to myself in front of the crew – I would say, 'Let’s film in Oklahoma. During tornado season, I said.' So that was kind of a running joke between all of us, that this decision I had made – that we would try to make it as practical as possible – was screwing us over. But now when I look at the footage, I wouldn’t trade it."

Twisters hits theaters on July 19.