VILNIUS: 26 March 2019. When Helen Mirren walks into her home as Catherine the Great in the new HBO mini series named after the famous Russian Empress, she’s not really in the actual rooms of the famed Tsarskoye Selo palace just south of Saint Petersburg. She’s actually in the historical Vilnius University Library in Vilnius, Lithuania.
This and many more secrets are shared in a new guide entitled Vilnius On Screen. It’s a perfect read for those interested in what goes on behind the scenes of the latest productions by the likes of HBO, Netflix, National Geographic, Sky TV, and many more. The guide invites readers to take a deep dive into renowned film and television titles like War and Peace, Jack the Ripper, the Conductor, and more – and shows them how Vilnius provided the setting they needed to bring their stories to life.
“Film aficionados travel great lengths to see the locations of their favourite films in real life. Vilnius has been a screen favourite for a while now and has served as the backdrop for numerous awarded films and television series. Vilnius On Screen is a way to show movie fans and industry professionals alike that Lithuania’s capital is a place where silver screen magic happens,” says Inga Romanovskiene, Director of Go Vilnius.
A spectacular Old Town, a diverse collection of unique suburbs, and tons of natural diversity make Vilnius a perfect place to film both period dramas and contemporary movies. Plus, the city looks completely different in each season, so filmmakers have the privilege of choosing from an extensive array of possible backdrops. Whether portraying Russia, the Vatican, Tokyo, or Chernobyl – each of these and many more settings can be brought to life in Vilnius and then be broadcasted to audiences around the world in the form of movies and TV series.
Vilnius On Screen puts a spotlight on recent films shot in Vilnius, presents insider facts about the production and cast of those films, and reveals how different locations in Vilnius were transformed to depict other places, countries and eras on screen. The guide, produced by Go Vilnius in collaboration with the Vilnius Film Office, is available online in English here.
Photographer M. Jovaiša