‘His Dark Materials’ is a fantasy drama based on the novel series of the same name by Philip Pullman. It is set in a multi-world reality that weaves together. Lyra (Dafne Keen) follows Lord Asriel (James McAvoy) through a bridge that takes them to a new world. She finds herself in a seemingly deserted Cittàgazze when she slips through the portal and crosses paths with Will (Amir Wilson). The filming for season 2 was almost complete before the lockdown was imposed, but a standalone episode was left unfinished. Known for its fantastical elements and scenic locations, you must be curious to see where the enigmatic world of ‘His Dark Materials’ is created. Here is what we found!
His Dark Materials Season 2 Filming Locations
About 120 different locations were looked at to create a deserted Cittàgazze, including Morrocco, Croatia, Spain, France, and Italy. None of these fit the bill, and permission for an extensive shooting schedule would have also been an issue. Keeping these factors in mind, season 2 of the series is filmed mostly in Wales and England. Let us take a look at the specific locations.
‘His Dark Materials’ is primarily filmed at Wolf Studios in Wales, where six sound stages were put to use to create various locations from around the world. The exact location of the studio is Building One, Glass Avenue, Cardiff. The facilities include 125,000 Sq Ft of stage space and additional space for production offices and storage for costumes and props. Bad Wolf’s notable credits are ‘Doctor Who,’ ‘Industry,’ ‘A Discovery of Witches,’ and ‘The Night Of.’
Made with plaster, wood, and tonnes of CGI, the production team, created a fantastical world in the studio that was more befitting of the storyline of ‘His Dark Materials.’ Most of the interior scenes were filmed here. Brecon Beacons National Park lends the swooping landscapes for the series. Other filming locations in Wales include Dewstow Gardens, near Newport and Plasturton Gardens in Cardiff, which stands in for an Oxford street.
The town of Trollesund does not exist, but an impressive set was built from scratch at Llangynidr Quarry outside of Crickhowell, Wales. The set is no longer intact. Margam Country Park was chosen as the location for one of the meetings between Lee Scoresby (Lin-Manuel Miranda) and another key character. The country park estate is about 2 miles from Port Talbot.
New College, Holywell Street, Oxford in Oxfordshire once again stands in for the fictional Jordan college. Episode 2 of the second season shows a chase that takes us through various parts of the university, including Radcliffe Camera, Radcliffe Observatory, and Parks Road. You may recognize the Pitt Rivers Museum and the Museum of National History on Parks Road as well as Magdalen College. The University of Oxford Botanic Gardens also features in the series and is one of the oldest scientific gardens in the world.
Sharpness Docks is a port town on the River Severn, between Cardiff and Oxford, which was used to film many Gyptian scenes. Streets of Bristol are used for a chase scene, specifically Elmdale Road, where Lyra runs out of the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery Building. Other locations are Trenchard Street, Colston Street, Host Street, Pipe Lane, and Colston Yard. The Blaise Museum and Blaise Orangery were also chosen for filming.
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