(Credit: Netflix)

Films

The real-life filming locations for 'Amélie'

With the sweeter than sweet Amélie now on Netflix, there is no better time to sit in front of the TV and enjoy the wondrous splendour of the classic movie. But, if you get bored of watching the influential set of movies on Netflix and feel the need to explore the world, then we’ve got you covered with the real-life filming locations of Amélie.

Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s whimsical romantic comedy Amélie, also known as Le Fabuleux Destin d’Amélie Poulain, tells the story of a young waitress who, upon reuniting a man with his childhood time capsule, decides to do more good for others whilst also dealing with her own loneliness.

Amélie is a visual feast painted in greens, yellows, and reds, making the film feel fantastical. An ensemble of memorable characters, including hypochondriac tobacconist Georgette, ‘Glass Man’ Raymond, and Amélie’s eccentric parents, help to blend comedic moments with genuinely heartfelt ones.

Starring Audrey Tautou and Mathieu Kassovitz, Amélie won four Cesar awards and two BAFTAs and was nominated for five Academy Awards. The film was an international success and has even been transformed into a Broadway musical.

Various locations are central to the story of Amélie, which is largely set in Montmartre, Paris’ 18th arrondissement. Known for its flourishing art scene during the Belle Époque, the Moulin Rouge, and the Sacré-Cœur – which overlooks the district, Montmartre was the perfect choice of location to film such a richly evocative piece of cinema.

Exploring the Parisian filming locations of Amélie:

Café des Deux Moulins

Located on the Rue Lepic road, Amélie‘s place of work, the Café des Deux Moulins, meaning “two windmills”, is named after the nearby Moulin Rouge and Moulin de la Galette. A lot of the film’s most important events happen in the cafe, so a trip to Paris would hardly be complete for Amélie fans without a quick visit.

Georgette’s tobacco counter was removed in 2002; however, a poster of the film can be seen inside, on the screen where Amélie communicates with Nino. The Rue Lepic road is also used as the backdrop for other key moments, such as when Amélie decides to guide a blind man through the street.

Canal Saint-Martin

One of Amélie’s many small pleasures is skimming stones, which she often does on the Canal Saint-Martin. Connecting the Canal de l’Ourcq to the River Seine, it stretches across 4.6 km. However, Amélie chooses the Passerelle des Douanes pedestrian bridge that runs across the canal as her chosen spot.

Located in the 10th arrondissement, Canal Saint-Martin is about 20 minutes from Montmartre but worth the short walk to replicate Amélie’s hobby.

Sacré-Cœur

Not just a must-see filming location for Amélie fans but also an essential Parisian landmark, the Sacré-Cœur was completed in 1914 and contains 222 steps that lead up to the basilica. In the film, Amélie sets up a sort-of treasure hunt to get the attention of her love interest, Nino.

With a traditional double-decker carousel at the bottom of the steps, the Sacré-Cœur is one of Paris’ most breathtaking locations, as well as one of the best places to relive key scenes from the cat and mouse game that blossoms between Amélie and Nino.

Gare de l’Est and Gare du Nord

Both the inside and outside of the Gare de l’Est train station can be seen in the film. This is where Amélie uses the station’s photobooth, which is located in the Salle des pas perdus hall. Opened in 1849, the station may not look as dream-like today as it does in the film, but you are still able to use the station’s photobooths.

Another station we see in Amélie is the Gare du Nord, which has also been used in films such as The Bourne Identity.

Maison Collignon Grocers

The Maison Collignon greengrocers was originally called Chez Ali, but upon the success of the film, the movie name was placed on a plaque above to pay homage. The grocers can now be found under the name Marché De La Butte. They sell the usual fruits and vegetables, and you can also purchase Amélie posters and postcards.

In the film, the shop is meant to be by Amélie’s apartment, which some attentive fans have suggested is behind the blue door nearby.

Foire du Trône Fun fair

The Foire du Trône funfair is France’s oldest and largest travelling fun fair, dating back over 1000 years. Taking place in Bois de Vincennes between April and May, this is where Amélie goes to see Nino, who works in the ghost train.

A silent moment of ambiguity between the two occurs as Amélie rides the ghost train and receives a caress from Nino, who is dressed as a skeleton.