Posts Tagged ‘locations’

Nanu Maps: Edinburgh film locations


Ignore the fact that London gets all the premieres, red carpet receptions and star-studded frippery. Disregard Sheffield’s Sean Bean-themed chip shops and rugged sky; snub Derbyshire’s rugged hills (what, like there’s nowhere else to film a Jane Austin adaptation?). The Athens of North has

more than its fair share of movie locations.

One Day

Let’s get the obvious one over with, shall we? One Day has several scenes set in Edinburgh – notably Anne Hathway and Jim Sturgess’ first on-screen kiss – which takes place on Cockburn St in the Old Town.


Princes St features right at the start of the 90’s classic, with Euan McGregor’s Renton and Ewan Bremner’s Spud being chased down the city’s foremost high street. McGregor’s iconic voiceover playing over Lust For Life made this exhilarating opening scene one of the most famous in British cinematic history.

Hallam Foe

A weird, magnetic film, Hallam Foe stars Jamie Bell as an oedipal teenager on the run in Edinburgh. He lives in the clocktower of the Balmoral Hotel and spies into his lover’s apartment on Cockburn Street, and somehow nobody thinks this is strange.

The Illusionist

An enchanting animation from the makers of Belleville Rendesvouz that sees a French magician leave Paris on an impromptu search for work in Edinburgh. Most of the animated scenes of the city are idealised, though Salisbury Crags and the Jenners department store both feature. In one iconic scene, the magician watches a Jacques Tati movie in the main screen of the Cameo cinema on Leven St.

Chariots of Fire

Whilst Salisbury Crags might be an imposing, rugged stage on which to shoot a pivotal scene of your film – the filmmakers got one major thing wrong about this section of the film that sent Hollywood into an Anglophiliac frenzy. Namely, that nobody in their right mind ever goes for a jog in Holyrood Park in the rain. It just doesn’t happen.

Young Adam

Euan McGregor features again in this dark, grimy film about coal miners in the Central Belt. It heavily features the Union Canal (which starts in Edinburgh’s West End and runs all the way to Glasgow), because much of it set on a coal barge.

The Thirty-Nine Steps

The colour remake of Hitchcock’s 1935 adaptation of Buchan’s thriller was mainly shot in a studio, but used footage of the Forth Bridge to recreate Hitchcock’s shots of the bridge for a scene where Richard Hannay climbs out of a train.

Two Weeks In September

You’ve probably never heard of it, but this 1967 film had some profound consequences on the local area; it means that Brigitte Bardot visited Portobello beach. That strip damp of sand just got a lot sexier.

Nanu on Bond: Finlay on Goldeneye


Goldeneye was fantastic. A reaction to the ill-received gritty Dalton films Peirce Brosnan was brought in after a hiatus of 6 years and made Bond brash, flirtatious and very 90s.

The 90s Bond films were not the most well received in the series but Peirce was my Bond. The cast is stellar; including Judi Dench as M, Sean Bean as 006 and Robbie Coltrane as a Russian. There is some dubious computer hacking and the cars date the film a bit, but as a child of the 90s this film was my first introduction to the series and stays with me as the archetype Bond film. Also an honorary mention goes to Xenia Onatopp (who you can read about here), the Bond Girl of the film who sexed people to death.

This film also produced one of the greatest video games for the N64; the Goldeneye multiplayer ate up too many hours of my life and the excellent single player is still my favourite first person shooter.