Filming Locations Guide: Where was Altered Carbon filmed?

Where was Altered Carbon filmed
Posted by
The Netflix cyberpunk science fiction series is an adaptation of Richard K. Morgan’s 2002 book of the same name. Altered Carbon is the first part of the Takeshi Kovacs Trilogy, set in the 25th century in Bay City (formerly San Francisco). It takes place in a dystopian world resembling a mix of Blade Runner and Black Mirror.

The story revolves around a technology that allows people to extend life indefinitely. Consciousness can be downloaded into a chip with your memo and personality called stack, that can be plugged into a new body. In season one, specially trained soldier Takeshi Kovacs (played by Hanna and Suicide Squad actor Joel Kinnaman), was challenged to solve the murder mystery one of the world's most powerful men, Laurens Bancroft (James Purefoy).

Season 2 returned in 2020 replacing Joel Kinnaman with Anthony Mackie (Marvel's Falcon). Why did Netflix recast Joel Kinnaman? Well, in this universe where it is possible to change your body almost as if you change socks. Also looking at how season one ended, Netflix decided to go for an Afro-American actor playing an Asian character, who was embodied at first by a white actor.

The new eight-episode season takes place 30 years after the end of the events told in season 1, with Kovacs going back to his home planet of Harlan’s World. Altered Carbon was filmed in Vancouver and surrounded in British Columbia, Canada. We will be updating this report with new information about the filming locations where the incoming season 2 of this ambitious project was filmed. Also we tried to keep spoilers to a minimum:

Season 2 Filming Locations

Harlan Plaza Season 2 Altered Carbon
The Harlan Plaza is the new Surrey Civic Plaza, right in the middle of the city. The complex includes the buildings of the City Hall, Surrey City Centre Library, the SFU (Simon Fraser University), the KPU (Kwantlen Polytechnic University) and the 3 Civic Plaza, the tallest building in Surrey.
(You can open all the locations on Google Maps clicking on the links below in the captions ↴)
Image courtesy of Netflix and Google Maps - Harlan Plaza Location


Maze season two
The VR labyrinth and gardens where Poe (played by Chris Conner), goes to meet the prophet Soul Brasil in S02E06 is the VanDusen Botanical Garden maze. We reckon that Danica's house where the Harlan’s Day fireworks are launched was also filmed here. The garden's visitors center modernist building was already used in season one (see below). The outdoor forest scenes featured in episode 5 seem to have been filmed in Squamish. The cliff-edge mountain looks like the Stawamus Chief granite monolith. The lake was shot in Minaty Bay.
Images courtesy of Netflix and Christopher Porter - Maze Filming Location

Season 1 Locations

The Raven Hotel Altered Carbon
This big-budget Netflix series was headquartered at the newly opened Skydance Studios facility in Surrey. Poe's The Raven Hotel (or The Nevermore in Season 2), Kovac’s apartment, Bancroft’s tower, Vernon Elliott's house, Psychasec clones vault and a massive City Bay street set were all built at Skydance Studios, as Dread Central reports. Images courtesy of Netflix - Location


Laurens Bancroft house
Laurens Bancroft’s place is inspired by the Art Deco Marine Building (at Burrard and West Hastings Streets). Altered Carbon was filming interiors of the hall on location. Image courtesy of Netflix and Sandra Cohen-Rose - Map


Gardens scenery
The production was filming exteriors at the University of British Columbia (UBC) Rose Garden and the Chan Center. This educational complex was extensively used to set the Belgrave University featured in The Order series. Image courtesy of Netflix and David J Laporte - Map


Alcatraz Prison
The Alcatraz Prison where Kovacs is resleeved in the first episode was filmed at the Riverview Hospital in Coquitlam. Image courtesy of Netflix and Jeff Hitchcock - Map


Bar club
Tak and Kristin Ortega go for a drink to a real strip club, No 5 Orange at 205 Main St.
Image courtesy of Netflix and Incommunicado - Map


Psychasec skyscraper
Exteriors for the Psychasec vault were shot at the hanging Qube building (pictured). The interior hall is the edifice of the Aerospace Technology Campus, located near the airport of Vancouver. Image courtesy of Netflix and Abirkill - Map


Altered Carbon Location
The exhibition about the extermination of the Envoys (second episode) was shot in the rooms of the Museum of Anthropology at UBC. Image courtesy of Netflix and Colin Knowles - Map


Fighting underground stadium
The combat to sleeve death arena (third episode) takes place in the Telus Studio Theatre, also located at Chan Centre of the UBC. In this same location where Upload was filmed. Image courtesy of Netflix and Jeff Hitchcock - Map


Modern houses
Isaac's house from episode 5 was filmed at the The VanDusen Botanical Garden Visitors Center.
Image by Forgemind ArchiMedia - Map


Altered Carbon city
The Waterfall Building (at 1540 West 2nd Avenue), was used to film a beautiful scene from episode 6 outside the hospital. Image by Andrew Hitchcock - Map


Interior scene
The house of Sergei Brevlov (episode 6) is a room inside the West Building of Vancouver Convention Centre. Also the docking bay of the satellite Head in the Clouds was filmed here. Image by Too Tall Paul - Map


Das Unsterblichkeitsprogramm drehort
Hemingway meets Dimi and the Ghost Walker at the lobby of the TELUS Garden Office Tower (episode 6).
Image by Viv Lynch - Map


Hello unicorn backpack
Many interiors were also filmed in Vancouver’s former Canada Post Building at 349 West Georgia Street. The facilities of this center served as the Wei Clinic (pictured), the hospital lobby, Kristin Ortega's Home, the police station, the A.I. card game meetings and the Fight Drome. Image courtesy of Netflix and Jeff Hitchcock - Map


Vancouver stadium
BC Place Stadium not only served as a model for the Head in the Clouds satellite of sin. Also a scene from episode 9 was filmed in the spikes of the roof. Image courtesy of Netflix and Ryan Adams - Map


set location
Outside of metro Vancouver, the series was filmed on location at the Britannia Mine Museum in Britannia Beach.
Image courtesy of Netflix and Anton Bielousov - Map


Harlan's World
External shots for Harlan's World were filmed at the spectacular Sea to Sky Gondola in Squamish. Please please don't confuse Squamish with Squahamish as we did. Image by GoToVan - Map


Takeshi and Reileen Lagoon
The lake where Takeshi and Reileen play as kids and later on Tak has a break with Quell is Minaty Bay. Also according to Moviemaps, the Widgeon Slough North Dock was used on episode 7. Map

Can you help to improve this article about the shooting locations of Altered Carbon, the cyberpunk adventures of a badass with the coolest pink-unicorn rucksack?
To complete and correct this report, any feedback, info or images that you may have are more than welcome, thank you!

NOTICE: If you’re using this information on your website, please credit and link to this page as a source.
*****

If you enjoyed the awesome cinematography and the cyber-punk worlds pictured in the series, go behind the scenes with the new volume The Art and Making of Altered Carbon. The book comes packed with concept art, final designs, artist commentary and previously unseen storyboards. Also do not miss the original novels by Richard K. Morgan Altered Carbon, Broken Angels and Woken Furies:

art book novel broken angels woken furies

This article contains affiliate links, which means as an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. This article was written completely independently.

6 comments

  1. Hi. In the second episode, he is in a building with totem poles. This is located at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. It is called the Museum of Anthropology.
    http://moa.ubc.ca

    ReplyDelete
  2. The external for the place where the clones are made and kept (forgot the episode)
    Is The Qube
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Qube_(Vancouver)

    ReplyDelete
  3. The inside of Issac's house (Ep 6) is The West building of the Vancouver Convention Centre
    https://www.vancouverconventioncentre.com/
    http://www.aiatopten.org/sites/default/files/styles/popup/public/COTE-7.jpg?itok=nktENpIM

    The location of the meeting place with the Meth is the lobby of the Telus Garden Office Tower (ep 6)
    https://www.cagbc.org/images/resources/casestudies/TELUS_Main_Image_722x300.jpg

    ReplyDelete

All comments are reviewed prior to publication