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Behind the scenes of the biggest new films

What it takes to make big screen magic

Which pop star inspired Maleficent’s pointy-cheeked look? How many doors did it take to film the “Here’s Johnny” scene from The Shining?

These are the kind of big screen details we love reading about (and the answers are...1: Lady Gaga, 2: Jack Nicholson chopped through 60 doors to get that iconic shot. 60!). So we’ve picked out some of our favourite behind-the-scenes facts about the latest films. Check ‘em out before seeing them up close for yourself at Vue.

Little Women

You'll see a different side to Meg, Jo and Amy in Greta Gerwig's adaption of the classic Little Women.

This version will focus on their lives as young adults after leaving home. Screenwriter Robin Swicord, who worked on the 1994 film version, told the LA Times, "It’s really taking a look at what it is for a young woman to enter the adult world. It’s a clear-eyed approach to the challenges women face as they try to bravely move into new situations.” πŸ’‍β™€οΈπŸ’‍β™€οΈπŸ’‍♀️

🎬 Little Women, 2019 (dir: Greta Gerwig)
🎟 At Vue 27 December, get tickets and times

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Cats

This isn't the first time Judi Dench has been cast in a version of Cats. πŸ™€

She was supposed to appear in the original stage musical, but was forced to pull out due to a torn Achilles tendon. Composer Andrew Lloyd Webber and director Tom Hooper decided to offer her the role of Old Deuteronomy, who's traditionally male.

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Who would have guessed that Andrew Lloyd Webber and Taylor Swift would work on a song together?

That's what they've done for Cats. Their new song is called "Beautiful Ghosts" and will be performed by ballet dancer Francesca Hayward, followed later in a reprise by Judi Dench, with a credits version sung by Swift herself. 🎢🎀😸

🎬 Cats, 2019 (dir: Tom Hooper)
🎟 At Vue 20 December, get tickets and times
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Scenes for Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker were filmed in the middle of an actual desert and the crew basically had to set up a small town there (complete with roads!). The creature-effects department alone had 70 people. πŸ‘
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Anthony Daniels, who plays C-3P0, is the only actor to appear in all nine of the main Star Wars films. 🀯

He recently spoke to HuffPost about his character's role in Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker. "Finally, C-3P0 comes back to be a part of the action as he was in ‘Episode IV,’ the original, and that feels really, really, really good and satisfying. To be in such a huge production as this, master-managed and masterminded by J.J. Abrams and the crew, it’s been like a prize at the end of the journey.”

🎬 Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, 2019 (dir: J.J. Abrams)
🎟 At Vue 19 December, get tickets and times
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Elf

When Buddy starts singing in the middle of Santaland at Gimbel's, the lyrics weren't scripted! Will Ferrell improvised them on the spot. πŸ‘
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Will Ferrell walking around in an Elf suit caused “a few minor traffic accidents” during filming, according to Jon Favreau – specifically the bit where Buddy walks through the Lincoln Tunnel, which was kept open for the scene. The director told Rolling Stone that people driving through were pretty surprised to see an elf walking along next to them πŸ‘€
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Before he was Elf…he was Santa πŸŽ…πŸ»

Will Ferrell worked as a mall Santa for 5 weeks with his Saturday Night Live co-star Chris Kattan as his elf helper.

🎬 Elf, 2003 (dir: Jon Favreau)
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Gremlins

There's footage from It's a Wonderful Life included in Gremlins. 🀯

It's set in Kingston Falls, a nod to Bedford Falls from the 1946 classic. As the Gremlins director told The Guardian, "in case the audience didn't get the message" from the name and small-town vibe of the setting, he slotted in an actual clip from the Christmas favourite.

🎬 Gremlins, 1984 (dir: Joe Dante)
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Charlie's Angels

πŸ₯š Easter egg alert!!

Some of the iconic outfits from the 2000 version of Charlie's Angels pop up in the new reboot (the traditional German dress on the left in this shot of the Angel's dressing room, for example). Director Elizabeth Banks wanted to nod to the previous films, so included some hidden references for fans to look out for. πŸ™Œ

🎬 Charlie's Angels, 2019 (dir: Elizabeth Banks)
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Le Mans '66

Recreating the famous race track for Le Mans '66 was an incredible challenge.

The circuit doesn’t look like it did back in 1966, so the film’s racing scenes were actually shot in four different locations. For the sake of continuity, the cars had to be extremely carefully positioned and the weather had to be consistent too. 🏎🏎
35 actual race cars were built for the film.

The director and cinematographer wanted as much of the film as possible to be real. All of the accidents and collisions are also real and performed by the actors' stunt doubles. 🀯

🎬 Le Mans '66, 2019 (dir: James Mangold)
🎟 At Vue from 15 November, get tickets and times
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Maleficent

This is why Maleficent’s eyes are so sparkly ✨

Angelina Jolie’s Maleficent contact lenses were hand-painted by an artist using colours inspired by the Labradorite stone, which has a swirly, metallic finish. The colours were also used for her eye makeup - and the director loved them so much, he incorporated the stone into Maleficent’s staff. πŸ‘€

🎬 Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, 2019 (dir: Joachim Rønning)
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The Shining

The blood scene (you know the one) from The Shining almost didn't make it into the film's trailer.

At the time, the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America) didn't allow blood to be depicted in trailers that would be seen by all ages. Director Stanley Kubrick told them the torrent rushing out of the lifts was rusty water in order to get the trailer shown. 🀫

🎬 The Shining, 1980 (dir: Stanley Kubrick)
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Doctor Sleep

Sequel Doctor Sleep recreates The Shining’s most iconic shots πŸ‘§πŸ»πŸ‘§πŸ»

Director Mike Flanagan analysed every frame of the original and used Kubrick’s designs to track down all the books and photographs that feature in the film. The new one also uses some of the original shots, but Flanagan’s intention is that audiences won't able to tell the difference between his frames and Kubrick's. 🀯

🎬 Doctor Sleep, 2019 (dir: Mike Flanagan)
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The Aeronauts

Ever wondered what it would feel like to be 3000ft above ground in a wicker basket? 🎈

Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones got to experience life in the clouds while filming. Jones even climbed out of the basket and up the side of the balloon to do some of her stunts. 😳
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Even people on the ground were alarmed by the filming of the action scenes for The Aeronauts πŸ‘€

Villagers in Newent, Gloucestershire were worried when they caught sight of a gas balloon in the air that seemed to be in trouble, with a helicopter flying very close to it - so they were relieved to find out it was all part of an upcoming movie.

🎬 The Aeronauts, 2019 (dir: Tom Harper)
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Harriet

Remember this name because you’ll be seeing it everywhere soon 🀩

London-born Cynthia Erivo stars in upcoming biopic Harriet – and not only is she getting Oscar buzz for her performance (as well as having a Grammy, Tony and Emmy already under her belt), she also co-wrote and performed one of the film’s songs. πŸŽ€πŸ‘

🎬 Harriet, 2019 (dir: Kasi Lemmons)
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Blade Runner

Blade Runner actually includes outtake footage from The Shining!

Ridley Scott used some of Stanley Kubrick's footage from The Shining's title sequence for the original ending of the film 🀯
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Roy's iconic monologue was a last minute addition to the script.

"All those moments will be lost in time...like tears in rain" - Rutger Hauer wrote this line the night before shooting the scene. 'All Those Moments' is the title of his autobiography, too. πŸ™Œ
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Remember this bit in Blade Runner? That's actor Joanna Cassidy's real-life pet (called 'Darling') Might explain why she's so at ease with a Burmese python around her neck in this scene. 🐍

🎬 Blade Runner, 1982 (dir: Ridley Scott)
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Eyes Wide Shut

Did you know that Kubrick’s final film Eyes Wide Shut broke records for being the longest ever continuous shoot? πŸ†

It ended up being 400 days of shooting; that's 13 and a half months of filming! πŸŽ₯
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Here’s Nicole Kidman hanging out in her on-screen home - which was in fact a re-creation of Stanley Kubrick’s very own New York flat. Even some of the furniture seen in the film was his. 🀯
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Tom Criuse had to walk through a doorway 95 times to get the perfect shot.

Stanley Kubrick was notorious for making his actors do multiple takes of the same shot to get them just right. πŸŽ₯πŸšͺ

🎬 Eyes Wide Shut, 1999 (dir: Stanley Kubrick)
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