Southern Spain -The Next Hollywood?

Spain is popular for movie sets, with its beautiful landscapes, majestic mountains, deserted plains and white sandy beaches, and its no wonder filming is popular in Spain year after year.  Spanish locations were used for City Slickers, Fast and Furious 6, Highlander, Mission Impossible II, Palm Trees in the Snow, Pan’s Labryinth, Puss in Boots, and here are some more you may have not known were filmed in this beautiful country:-

-Game of Thrones; The worldwide hit US television series, shot most of its fifth series in Seville, using most of its famous sites, such as the Alcazar castle.

-Empire of the Sun; This 1987 Steven Spielberg world war classic saw a young Christian Bale come of age. This was shot on an arid area of land just outside of Jerez where they built a Japanese prisoner of war camp.

-The Others; As opposed to southern Spain, northern Spain was the set for this spooky 2001 film starring Nicole Kidman. It was meant to be filmed on the Isle of Jersey, but was later changed and shot at El Palacio de los Hornillos, in Fragues in Cantabria.

-Lawrence of Arabia; David Lean´s modern classic was originally meant to be shot in Jordan, however changed due to budget costs. Seville was used to represent the cities of Cairo, Jerusalem and Damascus, while a dry Spanish riverbed was used to represent Aqaba.

-Cleopatra; Almeria and Andalusia were key locations for this 1963 film. The production had moved from London to Rome to Egypt. From Egypt it was moved to Almeria and many of the scenes were set in the desert of Tabernas and also Cabo de Gata and the Alcazaba in Almeria was used.

-Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade; This 1989 film was shot all over the world but many key scenes were shot in Spain. Iskenderun, in modern day Turkey, was filmed in Granada. The beach in which Indie’s dad (Sean Connery) uses his umbrella to down a Nazi aeroplane is filmed on Playa de Monsul, in Granada’s Cabo de Gata National Park (not far south of our coast here and well worth a visit).

-The Killing; The Scandinavian hit drama chose Spain to film its second series.

-Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace; Seville´s Plaza España doubled up for the city of Theed on the planet Naboo in episodes 1 & 2.

-Clash of the Titans; Much of the 2010 blockbuster was shot in the Canary Islands, locations such as Teide national park in Tenerife, Maspalomas dunes in Gran Canaria and Timanfaya national park in Lanzarote.

-The Good, The Bad and The Ugly;  This Spaghetti Western, along with many others, were all filmed in the Tabernas desert in southern Spain. Some of the dusty sets are still standing and form a part of the Oasys Mini Hollywood theme park (which is well worth a visit with your children or granchildren).

-Taken 3; The third installment of the trilogy saw Liam Neeson running across San Javier Airport with scenes of a car chase shot around the area as well.

So there you have it, just a little highlight on the evergrowing atention Spain brings to the big screen. More films are lined up to premiere that have been filmed here such as the latest installment of The Bourne Ultimatum franchise, having being shot in the streets of Tenerife.

So go on.. take a break from the beach and visit some of the most picturesque locations in Spain, used on the Big Screen. If they´re good enough for them, then they´re good enough for me.

Sophie Chambers

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