Where was Snow White and the Huntsman filmed? The Castle & ALL the Filming Locations

Posted by Ra Moon

Once upon a time, Snow White and the Huntsman was entirely filmed in the United Kingdom. The 2012 movie is a great opportunity to visit some utterly beautiful British landscapes in England, Wales, and Scotland.

The film stars The Twilight Saga vampire Kristen Stewart, Chris 'Thor' Hemsworth, and Charlize Theron (Mad Max Fury Road, Atomic Blonde) as Queen Ravenna.

Snow White and the Huntsman Locations

Before the Walt Disney factory made its mark on our collective memory, fairy tales were not as sugary and child-friendly as we now know them.

When the original tales were first compiled by the Brothers Grimm, these stories were cruel, violent, and explicit, as this film is.

Welcome to our wicked guide to the filming locations of Snow White and the Huntsman. Following this link, you can find all the locations of The Huntsman Winter's War, the second part of the movie, also shot in the UK.

The Snow White and the Huntsman Castle

The castle snowed garden
The movie opens with a scene in the snowed gardens of the castle. From the very beginning, the filmmakers made extensive use of computer-generated imagery combined with green (and blue) screens.

The Snow White town
The visual effects company based in London, BlueBolt, created two virtual versions of the village and the castle, one looking newly built for the Magnus reign, and another looking rundown.
Image courtesy of Universal Pictures and BlueBolt

Where was Snow White and the Huntsman filmed
The church of the coronation ceremony was also filmed at Pinewood Studios, located only eight miles away from Heathrow Airport.

This location is inspired by Durham Cathedral, the impressive Norman era temple which has its origins in the 11th-century.

Here is where the producers wanted to shoot. However, the costs of renting the cathedral were too high, so the building was scanned and photographed to create the set.
(You can open all the locations on Google Maps by clicking on the links below in the captions ↴)
Image courtesy of Universal Pictures - Map

Snow White and the Huntsman Castle
The castle's gates and interior courtyard, the magic mirror hall, the sewer flowing into the sea, the troll bridge...they were all sets built at the studios, extended with some digital magic.

Snow White and the Huntsman filming locations
But wait, the entire movie was not made at the studios! The battle between King Magnus and the Dark Army was filmed on location at Bourne Woods.

Situated near Farnham (Surrey) on the outskirts of London, this coniferous woodland has been used as a filming location for many movies, television series, and music videos.

This scenic forest was also featured in Gladiator, Wonder Woman, The Old Guard, The Avengers: Age of Ultron, and The Witcher season 2.
Image courtesy of Universal Pictures - Map

The troll in the Dark Forest
Black Park and Langley Park in Wexham, Buckinghamshire, appear in the credits.

We reckon that this may be the location of some sections of the Dark Forest or the scene where William, son of Duke Hammond (played by Sam Claflin), ambushes Ravenna's soldiers.
Image courtesy of Universal Pictures - Map

Frensham Ponds
The fishing village where Eric and Snow arrive after emerging from the Dark Forest was filmed at Frensham Ponds, in southwest London.

National Trust’s website explains how 'the production team of about 800 came to Frensham and spent two and a half months building the medieval village', only to be burned to the ground afterward. Whoops, mini-spoiler!
Image courtesy of Universal Pictures - Map

The dwarves in Burnham Beeches
Heigh-ho, Heigh-ho, it's home from work we go... the forest where the duo encounter the dwarves looks like Burnham Beeches, although we can't 100% confirm this.

Located in Buckinghamshire, about five miles west of the studios, this forest contains several hundred-year-old trees.

Did you recognize major actors like Bob Hoskins, Ian McShane, Nick Frost, Toby Jones, and Ray Winstone among the dwarfs? Their faces were digitally inserted onto the small bodies.
Image by courtesy of Universal Pictures - Map

Cathedral Quarry
The cave where the company hid from the Queen's acolytes is real - well, everything but the giant crystals and the carved gate.

The Cathedral Quarry or Cathedral Rock is located in the Lake District. It features many interconnected human-made caves, including this notable chamber, standing out at 40 feet (12 meters) high.
Image by courtesy of Universal Pictures - Map

The fairy Sanctuary
The Sanctuary, the fairies' enchanted forest, is the section of the movie filmed at Windsor Great Park.

The massive 2,020 hectares royal park is home to 800-year-old oak trees and a deer park, which served as inspiration for the mystical white stag scene.
Image by courtesy of Universal Pictures - Map

River in Blea Tarn
The river-crossing scene pictured was filmed on the picturesque river in Blea Tarn (Great Langdale), located very close to the Cathedral Quarry, also in the Lake District.

The United Kingdom is a beautiful country, but it's not always easy to appreciate it, particularly if on that bank holiday that you set aside to do so, the weather is not the very best. Sometimes it is just part of the scene!
Image by courtesy of Universal Pictures - Map

Duke Hammond Castle
On their journey to Duke Hammond's castle, the group goes through a few wondrous Scottish landscapes, including the Old Man of Storr in the Isle of Skye.

Hammond's castle was also filmed on a set, but the surrounding mountains are based on plates shot in Wales.

Also, some footage filmed in the northern area of Skye, known as The Quiraing, was used for the establishing shots.
Image by courtesy of Universal Pictures - Map

Snow White church
Attention, this is one of the few (if not the only one) locations filmed inside a real building without using almost any CGI.

Snow White's funeral hall was filmed at St Bartholomew the Great Church in London, a magnificent, Norman style temple, like Durham Cathedral.
Image by courtesy of Universal Pictures and Steve Cadman - Map

Snow White Castle
The final epic battle (and the beach and sharp cliffs where Snow finds the white horse at the beginning of the film) was shot at Marloes Sands, in the Pembrokeshire coast, Wales.

Ravenna's castle, located on an island off the coast, was added on top of Gateholm Island at the end of the beach.
Image courtesy of Universal Pictures and Pixomondo - Map

Snow White and the Huntsman beach
The international visual effects company Pixomondo CGI'd the real footage to multiply the number of soldiers in both armies.

Schneewittchen und der J├Ąger drehorte
I know where I've seen this framing before: at the end of Castlevania, the legendary SNES video game from Konami :]

A bit more of 90's culture: Ravenna transforming into a bunch of ferocious ravens recalls Madonna's Frozen music video, directed by Chris Cunningham in 1998.

Can you help to improve this article about the filming locations of Snow White and the Huntsman?
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1 comment:

1- Anonymous - Mar 25, 2023, 5:59 PM
Amazing analysis!


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