Over its five seasons, Leverage has been shot in three cities and set in four: Chicago for the pilot, Los Angeles for Season 1, and Portland, doubling for Boston, from Season 2 to 4, and Portland from Season 5.
The Leverage team forms in Chicago, when Victor Dubenich approaches Nate to manage his team of thieves: Parker, Hardison and Eliot. Nate later adds Sophie, now working as an actress, to the team. The pilot, The Nigerian Job was filmed entirely on location in Chicago. Locations include the Chicago waterfront walkway, The Citadel Center, Millennium Park near the Jay Pritzker Pavilion, and the Loop.
After the series was picked up for a first season, production and the team's location were moved to Los Angeles, California. Electric Entertainment, the series production company is also located in Los Angeles, first on the lot at Sunset-Gower Studios, and later on Highland Ave. in Hollywood.
In the story, Nate arranges new headquarters for the team close to his old base with IYS Insurance. Production for Season 1 was based at Glendale Studios, north of downtown Los Angeles with the Los Angeles Biltmore Hotel serving as the exterior for the team's new headquarters building. Location shooting took place in Los Angeles, Glendale and Pasadena, as well as some shooting in Long Beach and San Pedro. Following the destruction of their headquarters, the team relocates to the mansion once owned by disgraced tele-evangelist Garner Ted Armstrong on the campus of Ambassador College in Pasadena, which also served as the principal location for the two-part season finale.
Fictional Locations Edit
- Juan, California: A small town in the Imperial Valley, and the setting for The Bank Shot Job. The team is in town, completing another job when Nate and Sophie are caught in an attempted bank robbery. They soon discover that the father-and-son bank robbers are also victims of their mark, greedy Judge Roy. With the rest of the team on the outside, they run a con that finishes their original job and helps their new clients: the bank robbers. The bank building and exteriors were shot in Pasadena, CA.
Citing production costs, the production sought to relocate to a new city for Season 2. After offering incentives, and the production facilities needed, producer Dean Devlin chose to move the production to Portland. Studio facilities were built in Clackamas, Oregon, and location shooting takes place all over the Portland metropolitan area.
At the end of Season 4, Dean Devlin announced the show will continue to shoot in Portland, but the series will now be set there as well. Devlin and show creator John Rogers noted the show's desire to continue to take advantage of the city's versatility as a location, but without having to hide many of its more scenic, but identifiable, locations.
See also: Boston on the Leverage wiki
The fictional location for Leverage from Season 2 to Season 4 is Boston, Massachusetts. The original plan was to relocate the team to a new city each season, but the production team felt the opportunity to pursue Nate's background and relationship with his father meant the team would have to stay in Boston. The team's Boston headquarters is John McRory's Pub and Nate's loft above it.
The Boston Police Department has appeared in several episodes, including occasionally when corrupt officers are needed (The Morning After Job). Cops from the Eighth and Ninth Precincts play a large role in The Three-Card Monte Job. In several episodes, including The Two Live Crew Job, the team have impersonated BPD officers. The team has also taken on the case of BPD officers being fleeced by con men (The Future Job).
Equally important are the Massachusetts State Police. The team has an unconventional relationship with one officer, Det. Captain Patrick Bonanno, who has made several arrests resulting from the evidence and leads supplied by the team, most recently in The Ten Li'l Grifters Job.
Fictional Locations Edit
- Belbridge, MA: A fictional port town north of Boston. It first appears as the site of the trial of Eddie Maranjian in The Order 23 Job. Later, the team brings down its third-generation corrupt mayor, Brad Culpepper III along with gun runner Tony Kadjic in The Three Strikes Job and The Maltese Falcon Job. The Belbridge Police Department is also known for corruption, with four of its officers responsible for the shooting of Massachusetts State Police Det. Patrick Bonanno.
- Palmerston, MA: Location of the Palmerston Beavers in The Three Strikes Job. Eliot joins the Beavers and enjoys a short, but storied career in AA baseball as part of the team's con.
- Arcadia, MA: The location of the headquarters of JRP Pharmaceuticals in The Double Blind Job. Arcadia is a suburb roughly 30 miles from Boston.
Other Important CitiesEdit
- London, England: Sophie maintains a home and safe house in London. The King George Job is set in London. While the team is there, we learn Sophie maintained the identity Charlotte, Duchess of Hanover as part of a long-con that included her Aunt Emily as Countess of Kensington.