Sun Valley's U-Pick Parts is unfortunately closing down on January 1st, 2016 as first reported by the LA Daily News located at 11590 Tuxford Ave and 11409 Penrose St. The 26 acre funeral home for junk cars was a haven for car enthusiasts looking to find rare and cheap parts to restore or keep a car running.
First established in 1962 by the Adlen family in response to the rapid growth of the car culture in LA, the junkyard found a second calling as the premier filming location for Hollywood which was featured in 100s of films such as, The Running Man, Deep Impact, Escape from LA, BarbWire, In Cold Blood, and The Chase. Television shows shot on site include The "A" Team, Beverly Hills 90210, Hunter, JAG, MacGyver, Martial Law, Pacific Blue, Profiler, Tales From the Crypt, Good vs. Evil, and CHiPS, Most recently, the junkyard was used for Supergirl, Criminal Minds, Rizzoli & Isles, and NCIS: Los Angeles. The junkyard was also used in music videos like Sheryl Crow's "Sweet Child of Mine", Usher's "My Way," and Taio Cruz's "Dynamite."
In addition to becoming a notable filming location, the junkyard also became a junkyard to Hollywood's long forgotten props like the last surviving shark from Jaws aka Bruce, the massive big rig from 1992's Universal Soldiers starring Jean Claude Van Damme and Dolph Lundgren, and probably others that I am not aware of. There is also a Helms Bakery Truck, an "Old Shoe" car with an unknown history but believed to be used as a marketing tool by a Valley shoe store, and a Googie Style sculpture measuring 86 feet high that was once located at the Studio City Car Wash at Laurel Canyon and Ventura Blvds which was also featured in 1989's Earth Girls Are Easy.
Most of these vintage props appear not to be in danger and will be transferred to collectors like Valley Relics. While the junkyard will be gone, there are others in the area and I imagine the internt is also taking a piece of this industry. The bigger question is what is going to happen to the land that is contaminated?
You can read more SFV history here.
The pictures below are from a July 2015 visit where I wished I took more pics but hopefully I can get out to the junkyard one more time before closing.
Universal Soldiers Big Rig
Another angle of the infamous Studio City Car Wash Sculpture. The picture below shows the original location of the sculpture from the film, Earth Girls Are Easy at the corner of Laurel Canyon and Ventura Blvd.
The last remaining Jaws
Old Shoe with an unknown history
Helms Van and airplane cockpit possibly used in a film