It’s award season! With star-studded ceremonies on the way, we thought it was a great time to look at the best locations to visit from award-winning films.
It may well be the leading roles and famed directors that draw the biggest audiences and gain the most plaudits for a film, but it’s the location that best gives it a sense of atmosphere. It’s why location scouting is now such an important aspect of a film. Whether a scene captures its cold tone in an opal winter light or adds warmth with a sun-glazed backdrop, where a film is set can make all the difference.
Here’s a selection of award winners with locations that are well worth seeing for yourself:
Call Me By Your Name
Based on the 2007 novel by André Aciman, Call Me By Your Name was awarded Best Adapted Screenplay during the 2018 awards season. Following the romance of a bright, bold student, Elio, and his father’s university research assistant, Oliver, the film is set in the sultry heat of summer in Northern Italy.
Much of it was shot on location in the city of Cremona, southwest of Verona in the region of Lombardy. The leafy, sunlit surrounds of Elio’s villa are rich with symbolism, while there’s also a detour to the stunning Cascate del Serio – Europe’s second tallest waterfall.
This iconic film was a big winner during 2001 and was a rare critical and commercial success. Starring Russell Crowe as the eponymous wronged Roman General-turned-gladiator, the movie may have been set in Rome but much of it was actually filmed in Malta.
A huge, Roman-style set was built at Fort Ricasoli, placed at the front of the Grand Harbour near the waterfront of the capital, Valletta. The authenticity of the location was aided by the much-lauded use of CGI, but it’s still fascinating to see how well the fort worked as a stand-in for the Eternal City.
Grand Budapest Hotel
Based on the works of Stefan Zweig and brought to life by the synchronised symmetry of auteur Wes Anderson, this distinctively themed tale is not based in the Hungarian capital as the name suggests.
In fact, the film is set in the fictional Republic of Zubrowka, but much of it was filmed in the state of Saxony in eastern Germany. A department store in the small town of Gorlitz by the Polish border served as the interiors of the titular hotel. The town since went on to win the European Location Award in 2017 and the film itself won many gongs in 2015.
Midnight in Paris
The clue’s in the title here, as this 2012 award-winner was set and filmed in Paris. Starring Owen Wilson, this whimsical comedy follows the travails of Gil Pender as he time travels to classic eras of Paris’s past every midnight.
You’ll spot many of the French capital’s most famous landmarks in the film, including the banks of the River Seine, Notre-Dame Cathedral, Arc de Triomphe and the Shakespeare & Company bookshop.
Vicky Cristina Barcelona
This is another award winner where its key location is part of its title. The film boasts three of the world’s most acclaimed stars, Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz and Scarlett Johansson, but it was Cruz that scooped the Best Supporting Actress in 2009.
The plot revolves around the complex romantic entanglements of a Spanish artist and the two American women he meets on a summer holiday in Barcelona. Keep a look out for the eye-catching architecture of Gaudí in many key scenes, including at Parc Güell and La Sagrada Familia.
Dunkirk was a worthy winner of many awards during 2018, including for Best Sound Mixing, Sound Editing and Film Editing. Adding to the authenticity of the film, Dunkirk was shot at the real location of the evacuation in 1940.
The 10-mile long beach of Dunkirk lies on the northern coast of France, close to Calais and more than 300km from Paris. The street scenes in the movie were actually filmed at Malo-les-Bains nearby as many of the buildings in Dunkirk were destroyed during the war. Look out for Rue Belle Rade – it’s virtually unchanged from how it looks in the film!
Feeling inspired to discover an award-worthy filming location for yourself? Jet2.comcan take you there.