El Paso is no stranger to appearing in movies as either a filming location or a setting in the movie. One film that my family remembered was one that starred Denzel Washington & Lou Diamond Phillips. The 1996 movie Courage Under Fire: a movie that took place in 1991 during the Gulf War. Denzel Washington played Lieutenant Colonel Serling & Lou played Staff Sergeant John Monfriez.

1996 Lou Diamond Phillips stars in the new movie "Courage Under Fire"
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If you've never seen the movie, here's a trailer for the movie back in the day.

The part that I loved during the movie was the train scene. And the train locomotive used in the movie looked pretty familiar...

You'll notice that's a engine & we do have some of those red locomotives here on Ft Bliss. There were 3 in particular I remembered & their nicknames: Red Dog, Red Wolf & Red Headed Step Child.

We still have some here on base:

Mark Paulus
Mark Paulus
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Mark Paulus
Mark Paulus
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Now the really interesting part is WHERE they shot Courage Under Fire: they shot the train/car scene in the small town Bertram, Texas. And they shot the helicopter scenes in El Paso & parts of Faben. Other Texas locations included Austin, Bastrop & San Marcos.


When they were shooting the movie, there was an article (that can now be found on Gov.Texas) about the tourism that was rampant back in 1996. Many props (including tanks & helicopters) were placed outside the Cattleman's Steak House so people can come see the props for themselves.

You're probably thinking "well they probably got rid of the stuff used in the movie. it's long gone. Right?" Actually no! Many of the props used in the movie are still here. Just outside of Fabens at the Indian Cliffs Ranch. This wasn't the only movie shot there either. You can see a full list on the El Paso Movie sets website.

Hopefully with the announcement of a new movie studio opening up in Las Cruces, we'll have even more movies shot here. More chances of showing up on the big screen...

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