Cottonwood is a census-designated place in Shasta County, California, United States. The population was 3,316 at the 2010 census, up from 2,960 at the 2000 census. Cottonwood was a stagecoach town where a settlement was established in 1849. In spring of 1997 Hollywood came to this small quiet town to film "Almost Heroes" starring Matthew Perry and Chris Farley. It was Farley's last film.