Guest post by David DeFino
A Brief History of Linda Vista Hospital
Linda Vista Hospital in the Boyle Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles opened in 1904 as the Santa Fe Coast Lines Hospital. The original building was razed in 1924, and replaced with the current structure. In 1980, the hospital changed management, and in 1989 the name was changed to Linda Vista Hospital. In 1991 the hospital ceased to operate as a hospital.
Through the 1970s and 1980s, the surrounding East Los Angeles neighborhoods began to loose value as crime surged and gangs moved in. The hospital suffered set backs in funding as well as an increased number of drug overdoses and violent crime related injuries (both resulting in increased mortality rates).
Since the closing of the Linda Vista Hospital it has remained a part of Los Angeles as a motion picture production location available for rent.
The Haunting of Linda Vista
Walking around Linda Vista hospital is creepy enough. The maintenance on the 90-year-old building has been minimal since its closure in 1991, and the left over hospital equipment combined with the remnants of previous film shoots (complete with random blood splatters), it is easy to see how the slightest noise can create panic in the imaginative mines of a film production crew.
My experience with the haunting of Linda Vista Hospital happened in 2008 while working on the film “Someone’s Knocking on the Door”. We spent about a week shooting in many different parts of the hospital. We were a small crew making an ambition project on a tight budget. One day, we were shooting a scene in the morgue on the bottom floor in the back of the building. The scene was set and lit. Our next “location move” was going to be to a room on the third floor in the front of the building at the end of a hall. I decided to head up there while they were getting coverage and start pre lighting the next scene. One of the other crew members gave me a message to pass along to our set decorator who was already up at the next shooting location… alone.
While heading to the room at the end of the hallway, I remembered that these were patient rooms. The patient rooms in this building shared a bathroom. So, instead of going straight into the room we would be shooting in, I decided to go into the adjoining room, and through the bathroom in an attempt to scare the set decorator. I arrived at the door between the bathroom and the patient room we were going to be shooting in, and started to scratch on the closed door. After just a second, I heard a woman scream on the other side of the door. My first thought was that scream might have messed up a take downstairs where they were still filming a scene. It was that loud. I flung the door open for the classic “Got You” moment… and the room was empty. I ran over to the only other door in the room, and looked around the corner to see if she was running down the hallway in terror… no one there. I figured she must have run off even though I had no idea how should could have made it around the corner and far enough away that I wouldn’t hear her running by the time I got into the hallway, and I decided to actually do the work I was up there to do. A few minutes later the set decorator comes walking in the door. I apologize for the door scratching thing, but she has no idea what I am talking about. I ask her if she was just up here, and she says that she wasn’t she was down at craft service. The rest of the crew had been in the morgue before I left that location, so no one else could have been in that room. They say the ghost of a young lady haunts the hallways of the third floor, could that have been her that I heard scream? Or maybe the ghostly orderly that is said to still make his rounds through the hospital. Whatever the case may be, Linda Vista Hospital is surely one of the creepiest places I have ever shot in in Los Angeles.
More Photos From Someone’s Knocking at the Door