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Empire of the Sun Locations

Empire of the Sun is an American historical war drama movie directed by Steven Spielberg, written for the screen by Tom Stoppard, scored by legendary composer John Williams, and based on the 1984 novel of the same name by J. G. Ballard. Starring Christian Bale, John Malkovich, Miranda Richardson, and Nigel Havers, the film was released by Warner Bros. Pictures on December 11, 1987, in the US, grossed $66.7 million worldwide, and was nominated for 6 Academy Awards including "Best Music, Original Score". The film also won 3 BAFTA Awards and 2 nominations at the 1988 Golden Globes. Empire of the Sun was shot in Spain, England, and China. Filming also took place at Elstree Studios in the UK. The film became the first American movie filmed in Shanghai since the 1940s.

Empire of the Sun location
Shanghai, China. Photo by Silvia Fang on Unsplash.

Where was Empire of the Sun Filmed?

Empire of the Sun was filmed in Beckton, Beckton Gas Works, Carver Barracks, Elstree Film Studios, Knutsford, Luton Hoo Estate, Shanghai (上海市), Sunningdale and Trebujena.

The complete list of the locations with latitude and longitude coordinates are listed below in the table.

Empire of the Sun Locations Map

Empire of the Sun Locations Table

Location NameLatitudeLongitude
Beckton Gas Works51.5141030.076702
Carver Barracks51.9875760.284047
Elstree Film Studios51.658119-0.269305
Luton Hoo Estate51.845161-0.399692
Shanghai (上海市)31.159763121.326027

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James Quan ( psychiatrist) - Editor's Pick 2023-09-19 17:51:35

Love this movie and delighted that it was shown again…I was again struck by the boyish excitement and unconscious courage in the lead character and playing in war struck Shanghai back in that era. The soldiers were also fairly portrayed , not as murderous monsters or super heroes, but rather as ordinary soldiers dealing with the war realistically and pragmatically..Christian Bale beautifully portrayed a young boy able to play and explore in a city in war time a totally believable way!Every few years this film appears and that era and city as seen authentically through a boy’s eyes and playfulness always delights and moves me! Hard to imagine most modern teens anywhere as dealing with such chaos and danger with such competence and humour…always am delighted when this film replays on TV!!