So one of you likes sci-fi films, while your partner is more of a disaster movie buff. Perhaps you both enjoy a little adventure, action and suspense. Or a fantastical world of wizards, witches and escapism.
Whatever your big-screen tastes, if you are looking for a richly enchanting destination to celebrate your next wedding anniversary, Norway could be the ideal setting for a memorable blockbuster movie experience.
Over the years, the picturesque Nordic country has provided filmmakers with a diverse array of stunning locations, including – most recently – the eagerly-awaited next James Bond movie, No Time to Die, due for release in 2021.
Daniel Craig, Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, Tom Cruise, Matt Damon, Hailey Aitwell, Mark Hamill, Pom Klementieff, John David Washington, Timothée Chalamet, Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Ferguson and Oscar Isaac are just some of the many Hollywood stars to have shot iconic scenes in Norway.
For couples who would like to retrace their famous steps, Visit Norway has put together a list of the country’s alluring film locations: in addition to No Time to Die… Dune, Mission: Impossible, Tenet, Star Wars, The Snowman, Pathfinder, Ex Machina, Downsizing, The Quake, The Wave, Pathfinder, Frozen, Harry Potter and The Witches.
No Time to Die
In the trailer (for the 2021 release), a girl is seen running from a masked man on a frozen lake. The real-life location is Langvann lake near Hakadal (Nittedal municipality) in the Akershus region just north of Oslo. Another location is the Atlantic Road in the western part of Norway, while other locations rumoured to have made the final cut are Lutvann lake and Rauma.
Due to premiere in October 2021, Dune includes a scene in which Timothée Chalamet (playing Paul Atreides) is seen walking on a beach on his home planet Caladan before he travels to Arrakis. The beach in the background is actually in Norway, on the west coast of the Stadlandet peninsula in the north-western part of Nordfjord.
In Fallout, secret agent Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) hangs from a cliff in the final battle scene, which was filmed on the renowned Preikestolen Pulpit Rock in western Norway, close to Stavanger (although in the movie Kashmir is mentioned). The hike to the plateau takes about two hours (or you can take a boat from Stavanger), and the reward is a magnificent view of the Lysefjord.
For Mission: Impossible 7 (due out in 2021), Tom Cruise and the crew stayed for about one month in the Åndalsnes area.
Christopher Nolan’s new film premiered in August 2020, and one of the locations is Norway’s capital of Oslo, and specifically one of its most iconic buildings and attractions: The Opera House. In the scene in which John David Washington and Robert Pattinson are talking about an aeroplane accident, they are standing on the opera roof, which is a popular place to visit for both locals and tourists.
Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
In the original Star Wars trilogy, the scenes in which Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) have to fight both the cold and the Imperial All Terrain Armored Transports were filmed (1979) in and around the mountain village of Finse on the edge of the Hardangerjøkulen glacier. Finse is the highest train station on the Norwegian railway system.
Oslo plays a major role in the Harry Hole crime novel series by best-selling Norwegian author Jo Nesbø. Parts of the film adaption of The Snowman (2017), starring Michael Fassbender, were filmed in the Schrøder restaurant, Fram museum, Henie Onstad art centre, Oslo Spektrum Arena, Holmenkollen ski jump and Oslo City Hall. The movie was also filmed at the harbour and on Mount Ulriken and the famous Bergen railway in Rjukan.
A Norwegian action–adventure movie based on an old Sami legend, Pathfinder was nominated for the Academy Award for best foreign language film in 1988. The story takes place in Finnmark around AD 1,000, and throughout the film audiences can experience the fascinating Sami culture, with shamans, hunting and reindeer, and the area’s exceptional natural surroundings.
In this science fiction thriller (2014), a large part of the film takes place in a hi-tech property in Alaska. However, the mysterious setting in the middle of an untouched wilderness is actually Juvet Landscape Hotel in Valldal, north of the Norddalsfjord, in the western part of Norway, about a 90-minute drive from Ålesund. The breathtaking landscape is located between the UNESCO World Heritage site of Geirangerfjord and the dramatic Trollstigen scenic driving route.
Scenes in this sci-fi comedy from 2017, starring Matt Damon and Christoph Waltz, are filmed in Trollfjorden, a relatively small fjord located in Vesterålen (northern Norway). The fjord penetrates deep into the 1,000 metre high Trolltindan, and can be reached by Hurtigruten. The ship stops there every day on its way north and south, except if it is too dark or there is a risk of avalanche in the winter months.
The story of the Norwegian disaster film The Wave (2015) takes place at the shore of the UNESCO-listed Geirangerfjord. Considered one of the most spectacular fjords in Norway, the Geirangerfjord is home to such famous natural sights as the Seven Sisters waterfall.
This 2018 sequel to The Wave (2015) features characters experiencing a powerful earthquake in the heart of Oslo, and is inspired by the actual earthquake that shook the Norwegian capital in 1904. Iconic buildings and areas include the Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel and the Ekeberg hill and sculpture park.
The first Frozen (2013) tale takes place in Arendelle, a town inspired by elements from the Bergen wharf, Akershus fortress in Oslo, Stiftsgaarden in Trondheim, fjords including the Sognefjord and Balestrand village.
In Frozen 2 (2019), the protagonists travel beyond Arendelle on new adventures to the far north, the land of the Northern Lights, encountering the Sami people and their culture, mountain plateaus, magic forests – and the family of Sven the reindeer.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
The magical world of Harry Potter is mostly located in England and Wales, but one of the scenes was filmed in Norway. The Rauma railway between Bjorli and Åndalsnes in Fjord Norway served as a backdrop for the train ride with Hogwarts Express through snowy landscape in the series’ sixth instalment (2009). The railway runs all year round, showcasing the dramatic Rauma river and majestic Romsdalstindene mountains leading down to Romsdalsfjorden.
A children’s dark fantasy novel by British writer Roald Dahl, The Witches story is set partly in both England and Norway (Bergen), with many scenes for the original 1990 film shot in the Old Bergen Museum.