/News 31.07.23

CATO’s Top Five Filming Locations in NSW

With the Australian Federal Government’s announcement of a 30% Location Offset, CATO shines the spotlight on their favourite filming locations in New South Wales. Home to a diverse range of backdrops, including metropolitan city skylines, scenic coastlines and rural landscapes, NSW offers a wealth of locations for international and domestic clients.

CATO Location Services is Australia’s most innovative logistics and production support crew company. With over a decade of industry experience, the team at CATO are skilled problem-solvers. They are able to facilitate projects of all sizes, at locations all around NSW. For international productions seeking smart solutions, CATO is a one-stop-shop whilst filming down-under.

Sydney CBD

Standing in for a multitude of other countries, Sydney’s CBD is an incredibly versatile location.

Sydney CBD behind Centennial Park. Photo by Dmitry Osipenko

Set against the iconic backdrop of New York City, feature film 2:22 (2017) was actually shot in and around Sydney. For the filming of Peter Rabbit 1 & 2 (2017 & 2019), Sydney’s Centennial Park was transformed into the Lakes District of England, and despite being set in San Francisco, The Invisible Man (2020) was shot throughout Sydney’s CBD and inner suburbs.

Helping to acquire filming permits, and managing the logistics of filming within one of the busiest parts of Australia, CATO has facilitated some of the biggest international productions to visit New South Wales in the past decade.

Check out how Sydney transformed for Peter Rabbit here

South Coast

The South Coast of New South Wales is famous for its beautiful, coastal scenery.

Sea Cliff Bridge, Illawarra. Photo by Daniel Kuberek

Russel Crowe’s film Poker Face (2022) is set in Miami, yet was partially filmed in the South Coast suburb of Kiama. Utilising one of the most iconic filming spots in the region, Poker Face also shot at the Sea Cliff Bridge in Clifton. With extensive experience managing the logistics of filming here this is one of CATO’s favourite locations to lock down.

Likewise The Invisible Man (2020) also made use of the South Coast’s scenic backdrop. The feature film was shot in-part at the recogniseable Headland House in Gerringong, rather than San Francisco where the film is set. Working with a conservative budget of USD$7 million, the Australian-filmed blockbuster reportedly grossed USD$140 million in its theatrical run.

Click here to take a tour of Headland House


Northwest of Sydney, the small town of Richmond has hosted an impressive number of high-profile productions. For Mel Gibson’s critically acclaimed Hacksaw Ridge (2016) Richmond’s main street was transformed into war-era Virginia, whilst another location further south was made to resemble a Japanese battlefield. CATO has worked in Richmond alongside a number of productions, including Children of the Corn (2020) and Underbelly: A Tale of Two Cities (2009).

Baz Lurhmann’s The Great Gatsby (2013) also filmed in the town, shooting on-location at the Sydney Polo Club. After six months working on The Great Gatsby in the unit department, Kieran Cato established CATO Location Services. Seeing a gap in the market for crew that understood the intricacies of filming and how a set works, CATO was created in 2012 to provide premium, tailored support to the film and TV industries.

Check out Richmond transformed into 1930s America here

Broken Hill

On the border of NSW and South Australia, Broken Hill offers iconic Australian scenery.

Broken Hill. Photo by Dylan Shaw

Surrounded by red desert the outback town has featured in many iconic Australian productions, including The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994) and Mad Max 2 (1981). More recently, CATO has worked in Broken Hill on the production of Wolf Like Me (2022). The Stan original series featuring Isla Fisher is set in Adelaide, yet was filmed in Sydney and regional NSW.

See the iconic scenery of Broken Hill in Wolf Like Me here

Blue Mountains

Blue Mountains. Photo by Quentin Grignet

Lambs of God (2019) and Wakefield (2021) are among a few of the productions that CATO has worked on in the Blue Mountains. At the same location Baz Lurhmann filmed The Great Gatsby (2013), Lambs of God also filmed at Breenhold Gardens in Mount Wilson, highlighting the location as an impressive stand in for both North America and Europe.

Home to the famous Three Sisters rock formation, the Blue Mountains also features as the dramatic backdrop for Limitless with Chris Hemsworth. Shooting at Scenic World Katoomba, approximately 100 kilometres from Sydney, CATO provided premium support for the National Geographic series whilst on location.

After success working on Limitless, the same production team invited Kieran Cato abroad to work on an international documentary featuring Will Smith. Kieran consulted on all things traffic, unit and logistics for the project which was shot in 2022.

Catch a glimpse of the stunning Blue Mountains back drop in Chris Hemsworth’s trailer for Limitless on Disney+