World Cities Tour 2014 Summer Edition - Day 26


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July 12th 2014
Published: July 13th 2014
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Waiting for the bus?Waiting for the bus?Waiting for the bus?

this sounds like a time for icecream!
Day 26 - Behind the scenes

Today was dedicated to a tour of the Warner Brothers Studio where they made the Harry Potter Movies. We snagged some tickets and transportation from London even after the direct sales were sold out. The tour was set up so that you progressed from the indoor sets through some props and special effects, past the outdoor sets (and the Butterbeer), through the creature shop, by the models and out through the gift shop. They estimate 3 hours for the tour but we could have spent all day there. We also had a audio guide that gave a bunch more information as we went along. Anne's favorite part was seeing all the details worked into the sets. Michelle really enjoyed the creature shop where we saw the Monster Book of Monsters, Aragog, and Buckbeak. Tony was a huge fan of the detailed exterior model of Hogwarts from the final movies. For us it was a once in a lifetime opportunity but we could see that others had been there many times. After we made our way back to London we stopped in Kensington Park to play at the Princess Diana Memorial Playground hat was closed
Not just any bus,Not just any bus,Not just any bus,

we get to ride a themed bus. We figured out this is the first time we've ever done this kind of tour.
the day before. Michelle had a fantastic time and could have spent hours there. Dinner was upstairs in the hotel at the traditional Chinese restaurant on the 10th floor. It had a great view and great food, even if we didn't know what most of it was. Tomorrow we leave London to check out some of the nearby communities and lunch with a friend of Tony's from Amazon and his family. We should end up in Cambridge for the last part of our trip before heading home.


Additional photos below
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We've arrivedWe've arrived
We've arrived

We didn't see it on the way in but there looked to be some major filming going on on one of the other lots. we saw cliffs, building exteriors and some kind of round platforms. Wonder what it was.
CheckmateCheckmate
Checkmate

These are all real props used during the movies. You get to be right up close to many of them so you can see the detail.
Under the stairs.Under the stairs.
Under the stairs.

The first set we saw was Harry's cupboard under the stairs. All the signs gave great information about the ideas behind the sets and props and about where some of the materials came from. Most of the items in the cupboard came out of a set dressers basement.
In we goIn we go
In we go

After a bit of prep and video watching we pass through the doors and into the great hall.
The Great HallThe Great Hall
The Great Hall

Used in all 8 movies, the Great Hall has a real stone floor and has been dressed and redressed many times. the detail of each area was amazing.
The back side of...The back side of...
The back side of...

The floor may be real stone but the walls, like many of the sets, are made of plaster.
Ministry of MagicMinistry of Magic
Ministry of Magic

One of Tony's favorite sections was the sets and props from the Ministry of Magic.
Detail everywhereDetail everywhere
Detail everywhere

The amount of detail that went into props and background elements, often seldom or briefly seen on screen, is amazing.
Nobody HomeNobody Home
Nobody Home

Michelle knocks on the door to Number 4 Privite Drive.
Giant Hairy SpiderGiant Hairy Spider
Giant Hairy Spider

Pretty much Anne's worst nightmare.
It's only a modelIt's only a model
It's only a model

but it is a wonderful one, well worth visiting. we could have spent an hour just looking at all the detail. By the end of the tour we were all agreed we need to watch all the movies.
On a high noteOn a high note
On a high note

Michelle found the highest point at the playground. t's modeled after Neverland from the Peter Pan book.
Nice viewNice view
Nice view

Anne had to walk quite a ways to find a bathroom at the park. Fortunately there was a reward waiting at the end of the walk (in addition to the bathroom)
Urban wildlifeUrban wildlife
Urban wildlife

London parks are rich with all kinds of waterbirds


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