Today we’re going to the movies!
Malta’s been a popular filming location since 1925! For such a small island, it’s almost impossible to think that more than 117 films were either shot or set in Malta!
A few quick facts:
- The first movie to be shot in Malta, was a silent movie called Sons of the Sea and was shot in 1925.
- Nearly half of the 117 films were all from 2000 onwards.
- The island’s natural beauty and the diverse architecture of Malta’s towns and villages, castles and towers are the main attraction to producers.
You might wonder which movies were shot in Malta … well, let’s just grab a few names from the (growing) list of 117:
- 1980 – Popeye
- 1981 – Clash of the Titans
- 1992 – Christopher Columbus: The Discovery
- 2000 – Gladiator
- 2002 – The Count of Monte Cristo
- 2004 – Troy
- 2006 – The Da Vinci Code
- 2010 – Game of Thrones
- 2017 – Murder on the Orient Express
For this post, we will be focusing on the beautiful Anchor Bay where film-maker Robert Altman built the lovely town of Sweethaven for his 1980 film Popeye.
The 17 painted wooden water’s-edge houses of tumble-down Sweethaven were revived several years ago and is now a great place for kids (and adults) to meet the characters of Popeye and Olive Oyl.
It was fascinating to see the little town of Sweethaven! The highly original houses were made by teams of labourers with wood brought all the way from Canada and the Netherlands.
And as with any movie, we will entertain you with mostly just pictures in this post … for a few hours we’ve felt like the children in Sweethaven and enjoyed our time tremendously between the little houses and movie characters!
To our delight, the characters of Popeye were walking around the village and entertained visitors with a few dances and photo opportunities.
According to Wikipedia the film was not the blockbuster that Paramount and Disney had expected, but it still earned more than double the film’s budget – a worldwide total of USD 60 million (sounds pretty decent to me for the year 1980).
And then, to add to our fun day at Popeye Village … we’ve met the two main characters of Popeye. Olive Oyl was quite impressed with Berto’s muscles, while I on the other hand, had a chance to get closer to Popeye’s muscles 😄.
What a fun day we had here at Popeye Village! We hope you’ve enjoyed this just as much as we did!
In our next post about our visits to Malta, we will be taking the ferry and visit the equally beautiful sister island Gozo. It promises to be a trip with more stunning views, a cathedral and a visit to another ancient temple.
We have done these trips in 2011 & 2013