10 filming locations to be seen less than 100 kilometres from Toulouse
As the fourth most populated commune in France, Toulouse has always played an important role in history. Capital of the Visigothic kingdom and that of Aquitaine, capital of the former Midi-Pyrenees region and of present-day Occitania, it owes its nickname of pink city to the colour of the traditional local building material, terracotta brick. But his heart of stone doesn’t stop filmmakers, far from it.
Banquet stage – D’Artagnan
Place du Capitole, 31000 Toulouse
A banquet is held in Capitol Square. Requiring nearly 200 extras, the scene was shot at night. Yet the sequence almost never saw the light of day. Patient since early afternoon, the extras went on strike, sitting on the floor in the middle of the carriages. They demanded proper contracts and salaries. In the centre of today’s city, the square is full of curiosities, including the Café Bibent, whose interior decoration has been listed as a historical monument since 1978, the Opera House, the Town Hall and the former bookshop and stationery shop Castéla, located at 20-22 of the square.
Château de Montmirail – Visitors
Château Comtal, 11000 Carcassonne
The famous ramparts of Carcassonne and its county castle classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO are the residence of Frénégonde de Pouille (Valérie Lemercier), the bride of Godefroy de Montmirail (Jean Reno). The building guaranteed the border between France and Aragon until 1659, the date of the Treaty of the Pyrenees. While the town was mainly used as a stone quarry in the 19th century, Viollet-le-Duc and Paul Boeswillwald carried out one of the most important restoration works in Europe to restore the coat of arms of this jewel. Among the many fans of the Visitors, one of the most famous is probably Tom Cruise. During an interview with the Journal du Dimanche, the actor recalled: “As a child, I was fascinated by the farces coming from France: the series of “Gendarme” with de Funès, “La Cage aux Folles”. And “The Visitors”. I love this outrageous humour, never ridiculous”.
Château de Puivert – The Ninth Gate
The City, 11230 Puivert
The final scenes of the feature film were shot in this castle. From the top of its 605 meters, the site overlooks the village and the lake. Built in the 12th century, the castle has a five-storey keep, one of which is called “musicians’ room”. Eight very fine secular figurines play various musical instruments such as bagpipes, flute, tambourine, rebec, lute, guitarmaker, portable organ, psaltery and fiddle. Legend has it that the town of Puivert hosted a famous “convention” of troubadours in the 12th century. In addition to the Aude, France is in the spotlight in this film since the Seine-et-Marne, the Pyrénées-Orientales, the Val-d’Oise and Paris are used as filming locations.
Place Auguste Pierre Pont – Le Corniaud
Place Auguste Pierre Pont, 11000 Carcassonne
Not so corny as that, Antoine Maréchal (Bourvil) calls Saroyan (Louis de Funès) on the phone from a café on this square, the businessman himself installed in another café across the street. If Carcassonne is mainly famous for its ramparts, the site was already known in the Neolithic period, as evidenced by numerous archaeological discoveries. A great success in French cinema, Le Corniaud had 11,739,783 admissions in 1965 and was inspired by the Jacques Angelvin affair. The host of the French television programmes Télé-Paris and then Paris-Clubs, was arrested in New York in January 1962 at the wheel of a Buick Invicta. Coming from France, the vehicle had been used to conceal 52 kg of heroin and its driver claimed to have been fooled. However, he pleaded guilty and was sentenced to six years in prison. In addition to Le Corniaud, the affair also served as inspiration for the screenplay of French Connection, which won the Oscar for best film in 1971.
War Hospital – The Old Rifle
Collège Ingres, 4 place du Général Leclerc, 82000 Montauban
Julien Dandieu (Philippe Noiret) works in this hospital in the middle of World War II. Actually, the building is the Ingres College. In the past, the place was the Montauban boys’ high school. Opened in 1870 without a name, the establishment took the name of Ingres in 1885. During the filming of the rape scene, Romy Schneider’s credibility made many of the extras very uncomfortable.
Place Roger Salengro – 3 friends
Place Roger Salengro, 31000 Toulouse
Antoine (Yves Rénier) shows Russian and Chinese tourists around the city. This historic square contains the Saint-Pantaléon fountain designed in 1852. 3 Friends marks the last screen appearance of Philippe Noiret, who died in 2006 from cancer.
Place Félix Garrigou – No Pasaran
Place Félix Garrigou, 09400 Tarascon-sur-Ariège
Many scenes were shot in this square, such as the market place, the fight with Maxence (Cyril Lecomte) and the sequences in which Inès (Rossy De Palma) shouts “No pasaran” while she is chained up. This square is named after Joseph Louis Félix Garrigou, a doctor, speleologist and hydrologist born in the village. Chemist, professor of medicine, toxicologist and in charge of prehistoric research, man has made his mark in many fields. The scenes filmed in and around this village have aroused a lot of interest among the inhabitants. Part of the action even took place in the Renault garage at Miglos, where some of the employees were extras. The boss of the dealership, Rémi Peyrot had even declared: “It’s a change from the ordinary and creates atmosphere. It’s a pleasure to welcome people from another profession to see how they work. It puts balm in the heart of my employees”.
Narbonne door – Robin Hood, prince of thieves
16 Rue Cros Mayrevieille, 11000 Carcassonne
The Narbonnais Gate is used as the entrance to Nottingham Castle in the 1991 film. The producers believed that the character Nasir really existed in the legend of Robin Hood and built their plot based on this belief. Camped by Morgan Freeman, the buckwheat warrior was actually an invention by the British television series Robin of Sherwood broadcast in the 1980s. The stuntman Terry Walsh, having worked for this fiction, warned the creators of this detail. at the last minute, the writers changed Nasir’s name to Azeem to avoid a plagiarism lawsuit.
Saint-Gervais-Saint-Protais Cathedral – The Wolf Pact
7 Rue nationale, 32700 Lectoure
In front of this cathedral, a group walks and stops on the forecourt. Built at the beginning of the 12th century, the building was classified as a historical monument in 1897. The story is inspired by the Beast of Gévaudan, probably the most famous animal in France. In 1764, the first savage attacks against humans were reported. In 3 years, the animal that many call wolf, exotic animal, witch doctor, werewolf or simply serial killer, made more than 100 victims in the region. In 1767, a peasant named Jean Chastel managed to kill the beast. The Royal Notary Roch étienne Marin wrote an autopsy report and provided some information on its nature. Measuring more than 99 cm from the root of the tail to the head, he explains that the beast “appeared to us to be a wolf, but extraordinary and very different in its figure and proportions from the wolves we see in this country”.
Bagnères-de-Luchon – Tomorrow Never Dies
La Vallée Blanche, 31110 Bagnères-de-Luchon
Located more than 100 km away, but still in the department of Toulouse, La Vallée Blanche was used as a shooting location for the James Bond film 007 Tomorrow Never Dies. Not far away, at the Peyragudes altiport, James Bond (Pierce Brosnan) blows up a Russian arms smuggling market. He flees with a fighter plane, flying over the beautiful valley. If the altiport of the stage is located barely a “Bond” too far from the travel area, the valley is also worth the detour. Originally the title of the film was Tomorrow Never Lies in reference to Elliot Carver’s (Jonathan Pryce) diary called Tomorrow. A typo turned it into Tomorrow Never Dies and the producers liked it very much.
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