Movie construction and film sets

Like every year, the Academy Awards 2016 will be celebrated on February 28th in Los Angeles. That evening the who is who of Hollywood will gather in the Dolby Theatre for the biggest event of the industry. The fascination of movies arises from the ability to enter new and often strange worlds. In many many cases artists can dream up architecture in movies that would not be feasible in the real life. Movie construction is a profession that established itself during the 1920s with the early epic movies like “The Ten Commandments”. Later, in the 1970s big fantasy worlds like “Blade Runner” were created from scratch. Still today film sets serve as a playground as well as an inspiration for architects and designers. Movie construction remains a vital part to many modern movies. As enthusiast of construction and construction projects, we picked our top 5 favourite movie franchises for a long movie night:

Star Wars

Star Wars - Copyright: LucasfilmStar Wars – Copyright: Lucasfilm

“The Force Awakens” was the beginning of a third trilogy. It follows the search for Luke Skywalker by Rey, Finn and Poe Damerson and their fight alongside the resistance after 30 years of Episode VI. It is the highest grossing movie of Star Wars saga and the third highes grossing of all times. Some of the sets are the resistance Spacecraft based on D’Qar, located in the former Royal Air Force station Greenham Common and Tataouine located in the south of Medinine. The planet Tatooine got its name from this town. Most of the scenes were filmed near this town.

Harry Potter

Harry Potter - Copyright: Time Warner Inc.Harry Potter – Copyright: Time Warner

Harry Potter is a film series based on the books by J. K. Rowling, which consists of eight fantasy films about the most famous wizard. The first movie was released in 2001 and culminated with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 in 2011. The biggest challenge was to bring buildings and features to the reality. Due to the magnitude and magical elements that Hogwarts demanded, it was impossible to create the building. So, various cathedrals were used for the movie construction and a castle model was designed and constructed incorporating the design of Durham Cathedral.

The Hobbit

The Hobbit - Copyright: Time Warner Inc.The Hobbit – Copyright: Time Warner

The Hobbit is also a film series of three adventure films based on the epic fantasy novel The Hobbit (1937) by J.R.R. Tolkien adding new material and characters for the “Lord of the Rings” films. The films cover the fictional world sixty years before of The Lord of the Rings. The model version of Hobbiton occupies 14 acres. The Hobbiton set required the construction of 37 Hobbit holes and a double arched bridge, also 5 cubic kilometres of vegetables and flowers were planted on the set a year before of start filming. Sections of Rivendell and Minas Tirith were also created full-scale.

Jurassic World

Jurassic World - Copyright: NBC UniversalJurassic World – Copyright: NBC Universal

Jurassic World takes place on the same fictional island called Isla Nublar where a dinosaur theme park was operated for the last three decades. The park turns about a chaos when a genetically modified dinosaur break loose. With a record breaking opening weekend it is ranked as the fourth highest grossing film. The set of Isla Nublar was designed by Nathan Schroeder a well known artist to participate in films such as Avengers Assemble, Star Trek and The Hunger Games. The design shows a highly evolved, technologically advanced building on a tropical island.

The Avengers

The Avengers - Copyright: Marvel LLCThe Avengers – Copyright: Marvel LLC

The Avengers is the sequel to the 2012 film based on the Marvel Comics. In this film the Avengers fight against Ultron (a super villain appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics), an artificial intelligence obsessed with causing human extinction. The movie was shot in five different countries: Italy, South Africa, South Korea, United Kingdom and Bangladesh. Many scenes were filmed in the Aosta Valley. For the Avengers attack the Fort Bard castle, a 19th-century castle located in the historic route that controls the pass between Italy and France, was lined with fake snow.

Author: Angela Venegas

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