Narnia Moves to Oz
An Australian movie studio has been transformed into British author CS Lewis’ magical world of Narnia for one of the biggest budget films ever shot in the country.
Production of The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of The Dawn Treader will take place entirely in Queensland, mainly at the water tank facility at Warner Roadshow Studios at Movie World on the Gold Coast.
Premier Anna Bligh on Friday welcomed director Michael Apted and two of the young stars of the movie, Georgie Henley who plays Lucy for the third time, and newcomer Will Poulter who plays a new character, Lucy’s cousin Eustace. Ben Barnes will also return as Prince (now King) Caspian.
“This is set to be the largest budget film ever produced in Queensland,” Ms Bligh said.
“It’s a big investment here in the film industry at a time when we need it most.
“We expect to see the creation of 2000 jobs because of this production.
“In December 2010 the filming that’s happening here on the Gold Coast will be on the big screen right around the world – I can’t wait to see it on the big screen and to see the Gold Coast shine.”
Media co-ordinator for the movie, Ernie Malik, took the premier for a stroll through the set of the magician’s garden which plainly cast its spell on her.
“It’s got a certain magic about it,” the premier replied when asked how it felt to be standing in the middle of Narnia.
“This garden is simply remarkable and there’s a mystery and magic about it that I think children are going to love.”
While he wasn’t about to reveal what the movie is costing, Mr Malik had high praise for the Australian facilities.
“We’re here because of the infrastructure of the Gold Coast, and they have this water tank that we needed because this is a seafaring story and this is the only tank of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere,” he said.
“Strangely enough, the Dawn Treader will never set oar in that tank.
“The ship’s over 30 metres long, it was assembled here then disassembled and trucked to Cleveland Point where we will shoot the exterior scenes in September then come back here and shoot the interior scenes.
“Through the magic of the movies it will look like it’s out to sea, but the Dawn Treader itself will never touch an ounce of water.”
He was full of praise for the work ethic and skill of the Aussies working on the movie.
“This set was done by locals and designed by an American. . . and it just goes to show that the craftsmanship and the magic exists here. [stuff]