Paris’s iconic landmarks and cobbled streets make the perfect film backdrop. With over 900 film shoots taking place in the capital every year, it’s a director’s dream.
From well-known sights to hidden gems, film buffs can easily retrace the steps of their favourite movie characters. Get your walking shoes on and take a trip around some of the city’s most famous film locations with our guided tour.
Here are our top five must-see places:
Le pont Bir-Hakeim
from Christopher Nolan’s ‘Inception’
The Bir-Hakeim bridge
Begin your day with a walk across the Seine on the Pont Bir-Hakeim. This double-decker bridge saw Ellen Page and Leonardo Dicaprio bend the laws of physics in one of ‘Inception”s eerie dream sequences. You might not be able to move the bridge with your mind, but you will get a good view of Paris. For the romantics amongst you, it’s also where Marlon Brando meets Maria Schneider in ‘Last Tango in Paris.’
Montmartre – Café des Deux Moulins
from Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s ‘Amélie Poulain’
15 rue Lepic (metro: Blanche)
Amélie's Café des Deux Moulins
Next stop: the winding streets of Montmartre for a bite to eat in Amélie Poulain’s legendary café. The décor may have changed, but the authentic French atmosphere and service have remained the same. Fans of the film will delight in this tourist haven – and don’t forget to sample her trademark crême brulée for dessert.
L’Avenue des Champs Elysées
From Stanley Donan’s ‘Funny Face’
(metro: Charles de Gaulle)
Now it’s time to conquer Paris’s most famous sights. Look no further than the musical number ‘Bonjour, Paris!’ from ‘Funny Face.’ Make like Audrey Hepburn and Fred Astaire: march down the Champs Elysées from the Arc de Triomphe down to la Place de la Concorde, through the Tuileries then down by the banks of the Seine. Extra points if you can name all the sights in this clip:
L’Hôtel du Nord
From Marcel Carné’s ‘Hôtel du Nord’
102 quai de Jemmapes (metro: République)
L'Hôtel du Nord
Relive the 1938 French classic in the Hôtel du Nord
‘s restaurant. The ideal venue for a candlelit evening meal, the iconic hotel has retained all its glamour and charm. Relax on the terrace with some traditional French food after a hard day’s exploring. Nestled along the Canal Saint-Martin’s banks, the area is also perfect for an evening stroll.
From Woody Allen’s ‘Midnight in Paris’
(metro: Cardinal Lemoine)
Finish your tour as the clock strikes twelve, sitting on the steps of the Saint-Étienne-du-Mont church. Owen Wilson combed the whole of Paris in Woody Allen’s ode to the city, yet this church is one of the lesser known sights from the film. Home to the tombs of Racine and Pascal, you too can bask in the nocturnal joie de vivre
celebrated in ‘Midnight in Paris.’
Want more walks? The Mairie de Paris has put together walking tour suggestions for cinephiles to relive their favourite movies, from ‘Hugo Cabret’ to ‘La Mome.’