1. ITV Report

Steven Spielberg transforms Birmingham into movie set


Birmingham City Centre has been transformed into the set of a new Hollywood sci-fi film, courtesy of movie mogul Steven Spielberg.

As filming begins in earnest for his new blockbuster, Ready Player One, in Brum, he’s re-inventing the city.

The overnight transformation of the historic Jewellery Quarter into a North American city is remarkable.

Steven Spielberg in Birmingham Credit: SNAPPERSK

One of the first buildings given a new identity is Telephone House, opened on Newhall Street in 1936, sixty years after Alexander Graham Bell was issued with a patent for his telephone design. Now, it’s Columbus North High School and boasts a US flag and graffiti galore.

Nearby, the 1930s Art Deco St John Ambulance building has been renamed the United States Postal Service’s Franklinton Retail Station, again flying the stars and stripes.

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Traffic signs point to Glenwood Avenue, Sullivant Avenue, Rich Street, Ludlow Street and Town Street. And there are American-style crosswalk lights, warning signs and a bus stop, all as heavily weathered as the set’s cars bearing rusty Ohio number plates.

Many other parts of real-life Lionel Street, Water Street and Livery Street have also had walls and street corners decorated with temporary graffiti.

Shooting on the sci-fi thriller will run until this Saturday.