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In focus

Scotland celebrates after big screen achievement

VisitScotland is celebrating some of the most iconic attractions and stunning scenery shown on the big screen in 2017.

T2 Trainspotting leads the way with a total of five nominations in the British Academy Scotland Awards for: Feature Film, Director – Fiction and three nominations in the Actor Film category (for Ewen Bremner, Robert Carlyle and Ewan McGregor).

The film, directed by Danny Boyle, was predominantly shot in Edinburgh and, with set-jetting a popular pastime for visitors, the national tourism organisation believes it will inspire cinephiles to follow in the footsteps of their celluloid heroes.

But T2 Trainspotting wasn’t the only film to showcase Scotland in 2017. VisitScotland looks back at some of the other films released this year that were #SetinScotland.

T2 Trainspotting

Edinburgh skyline seen from Salisbury Crags, Arthur’s Seat.

Director Danny Boyle’s follow-up to the quintessential 90s film Trainspotting (1996) catches up with Renton, Spud, Sick Boy and Begbie 20 years after the first film, for a nostalgic look at their original shenanigans. Much of the film was shot on location in Edinburgh, including a stunning cityscape from the iconic Arthur’s Seat.

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword

The Quiraing, Isle of Skye.

Director Guy Ritchie brought his take on the Arthurian legend to the screen with Charlie ‘Sons of Anarchy’ Hunnam in the title role, alongside Jude Law, Eric Bana and David Beckham. The beautiful Quiraing on the Isle of Skye served as a filming location.

Whisky Galore!

The harbour village of Portsoy, Aberdeenshire.

Based on the real-life sinking of the SS Politician off the coast of Eriskay in 1941, and the subsequent seizing of thousands of bottles of whisky by locals, Whisky Galore! stars Gregor Fisher, Eddie Izzard and Sean Biggerstaff. Director Gillies MacKinnon’s version of the tale made use of outstanding locations throughout Scotland, from the Borders up to Aberdeenshire, including Portsoy harbour.

Tommy’s Honour

The view towards Largo and Largo Law from Largo Bay, East Neuk of Fife.

Directed by Jason Connery and based on the critically acclaimed book by Kevin Cook, the film tells the story of a father and son from St Andrews who have a difficult personal relationship but who go on to change the face of golf in the 19th century. It was filmed in various locations in Fife, East Lothian, Midlothian and the Scottish Borders, including Largo Bay in Fife.

Victoria & Abdul

Loch Affric, Glen Affric, Highlands of Scotland.

Starring British acting treasure Judi Dench and Bollywood star Ali Fazal as the titular characters, Victoria & Abdul portrays the true events of the friendship between the ageing British monarch and Abdul Karim, a young clerk from India. Locations used in the film include Glen Affric in the Highlands.


Fidra Island from Yellocraig Beach near North Berwick, East Lothian.

Set in the 96 hours ahead of the D-Day landings in June 1944, Churchill follows Britain’s most iconic Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, as he battles his political enemies and personal demons before taking the final decision to launch the allied forces attack on Nazi-occupied Europe in Normandy. Filmed in Edinburgh and East Lothian, a scene at Yellowcraig Beach sees Churchill remembers his disastrous command and mass slaughter of troops cut down on the beaches of Gallipoli in 1915.

To explore more of Scotland’s film and TV locations, go to

Malcolm Roughead, Chief Executive of VisitScotland, said:

“Scotland’s stunning landscapes makes it the ideal backdrop for the big screen and 2017 has provided plenty of inspiration for cinephile set-jetting visitors.

“This year’s productions in particular, coupled with the phenomenal success of TV series Outlander, have given us the opportunity to not only promote Scotland as a wonderful set-jetting destination but highlight those stories and characters connected to our rich history and heritage.”

The British Academy Scotland Awards is one of the biggest nights in Scotland’s calendar and is renowned for welcoming and honouring an impressive line-up of stars. BAFTA Scotland, are hosted by Edith Bowman at Glasgow’s Radisson Blu Hotel, on Sunday 5 November. 20 trophies will be handed out at the glittering ceremony, including Actor Film, Actress Film, Feature Film and Game.

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