JK Rowling, award-winning author of the 7 "Harry Potter" books that swept the world, is at it again. After the popular release of her follow-up to the boy wizard's adventures, "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them", the charming guide book has seen a big-screen adaptation come out this November with Academy Award Winner Eddie Redmayne in the lead as Newton "Newt" Scamander.
From the onset, the story is set in New York, in prohibition-era America, according to The Guardian, 70 or 80 years before Harry Potter turns 11 and attends Hogwarts School. Because of this, filmmakers had to balance this highly un-magical time with Rowling's world of exotic creatures, magic spells and eccentric characters. The result is an alternative steampunk feel to the usual fairytale magic viewers have come to expect from Rowling's work.
"Fantastic Beasts" features dark tones and buildings and interiors in rich baroque style. The New York created in the film almost feels like Gotham City, waiting to eat up Newt Scamander travelling from over the pond, a smart but jumpy and scatterbrained magical beast taxonomist. To get a better glimpse of this new world, let's take a closer look at the actual filming locations for this Baroque New York-set movie.
1. Warner Bros. Studio, Leavesden- Although a little underwhelming, this studio saw the production of all 8 former Harry Potter movies, having the best sets in UK. Just an hour outside London, the area hosts the Harry Potter Studio Tour, according to Movie Pilot, a must-see for Potterheads.
2. St. George's Hall, Liverpool- This Neoclassical building was meant to "capture the grandeur" of 1920s New York depicted in "Fantastic Beasts". The building is at the heart of Liverpool and is home to a dazzling 30,000-tile mosaic floor and some of the world's greatest brick arches. Currently, it is used as a concert hall and law court.
3. Martins Bank, Liverpool- This outstanding piece of Georgian architecture was also used as the film location for Gringotts Bank in the Harry Potter series. Whether the bank will serve as an international branch of Gringotts or serve as an American wizarding bank remains to be seen in "Fantastic Beasts". Currently, it is owned by the Bank of Liverpool and has seen many movie crews filming in its halls.
4. Cunard Building, Liverpool- This building's façade primarily served as MACUSA's Headquarters in the movie. Built around 1914-1917, the building is Greek and Italian inspired in its architecture, with many sculptures on its frontage, adding to the old world charm of "Fantastic Beasts". It used to be home to the Cunard Line, an Anglo-American passenger cruise line that served the North Atlantic Ocean.
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