Skip to main content

Here, you can discover some of the qualities that made gigantic foreign production companies choose little Norway as location for their movies.

This summer, you can visit places you may already know from the HBO series Succession, Marvel's Black Widow, the Tom Cruise blockbuster Mission Impossible 7 or the James Bond movie No time to die.

Hide away in a quiet arm of a fjord, or experience the ocean in the middle of your car’s windscreen. Reach the top of a windswept mountain peak on foot, with a climbing harness or via a powerful gondola.

There are many possibilities – but how do you get to these places?

A flying celebrity

One way is to travel through the fjords from the town of Ålesund. Along your way, the mountains get tougher and steeper – and then you arrive in Hellesylt.

This summer, everyone's attention will be directed towards this little spot, or rather – towards a cliff looming a thousand metres above the village. This is precisely the spot where Tom Cruise, aka Ethan Hunt, shows his most spectacular stunt ever, in the premiere of Mission Impossible 7.

The stunt itself was of course rehearsed and filmed some time ago. A massive scaffold jump was erected and towered on top of Helsetkopen for several months, a well-known location within the base jumping community.

Cruise rode a motorcycle from the Helsetkopen peak, before letting it go and performing a final base jump. That day, a bunch of spectating locals had lined up for an unusual show.

Helsetkopen at Hellesylt rises 1246 metres.|© Simon Sjøkvist

Among those showing up was Ole Ringdal.

He tells that they were a large group of people, several hundred metres away from the film crew and the landing site. A helicopter shuttle was flying up and down from the mountain throughout the day. As something was about to happen, the atmosphere gradually grew tense.

Perhaps the wildest stunt in the movie history! Performed by one of the world's most famous actors, here in Hellesylt!

All of a sudden, he jumped off the cliff, the motorcycle crashed into the rock wall and Ole thought:

– Wow, he did it!

Then the parachute released. An enormous relief replaced the nervousness that had recently afflicted the people of the valley.

– We cheered like crazy! I even popped a champagne bottle!

Tom Cruise and his team stayed in Valldal for about two or three weeks. He was observed several places, including when he had a swim in the fjord by his cabin.

Ole, who is a butcher, met Cruise on a few occasions when delivering meat ordered by the film crew.

– I was at the cabin and took a selfie with Tom Cruise, and told him ”I am the butcher”. He then replied: ”I know you’re the butcher, you have the best food in the world!”

If you're going to Hellesylt, you do not need to bring a motorbike and a parachute. However, you should keep your eyes open and look up, and you might spot a base jumper who wants to try his hand at some Tom Cruise action!

See how they pulled off the wildest stunt in film history. © 2023 Paramount Pictures

Subtle luxury in Valldal

A few fjord branches further inwards lies Valldal, a valleysu which leads up to the gorge Gudbrandsjuvet. This is the spot of a gradually well-known film location: Juvet landscape hotel.

The minimalist designed buildings are surrounded by untamed nature, with a roaring waterfall close by. This contrast creates a strange and raw presence, that at the same time may feel exposed and private.

The hotel first became known through the movie Ex Machina (2014). For almost ten years, this science fiction movie has inspired guests from all over the world to travel to Norway, people who have seen the special buildings and have been tempted.

"When we saw images of the remarkable architecture and setting of Juvet we got really excited — like nowhere else in the world»

– Scott Ferguson, producer of Succession.

Juvet landscape hotel known from Sucession and Ex Machina.|© Per Ritzler / Statens vegvesen

Recently, the HBO series Succession recorded an episode here.

”When we saw images of the remarkable architecture and setting of Juvet we got really excited — like nowhere else in the world” – Scott Ferguson, producer of Succession. The statement was given in an interview in Variety, and quoted on the home page of Juvet.

Juvet is a clear example of what attention through movies and television can do. The effect spreads in both area and time.

– This was an excellent time to get a new recording, ten years after the previous big production, says Knut Slinning, the hotel owner.

– This is first and foremost good publicity for Norway. Secondly, it also promotes the area: Valldal, Rauma, and the Atlantic Road. In the end, only a few end up staying a night at Juvet.

With its increasing popularity, the hotel is mostly fully booked a long time in advance. In the off-season, there are several possibilities if your dates are flexible.

More places to stay in Valldal

Trollstigen and Rauma railway in the limelight

Moving on over the mountain from Juvet, you can drive the famous bends down the Trollstigen mountain pass towards Romsdalen. The road is known worldwide, thanks to the spectacular photos of the annual snow plowing. These bends can be seen in several productions, often in connection with so-called transport cuts, to illustrate something very remote. In the Marvel movie Black Widow, scenes from this area are used to show agent Natasha Romanov's arduous journey to the store!

Arriving in Åndalsnes, you will immediately see the Romsdal gondola, which takes you up to Nesaksla mountain top. This was also the location of several of Succession’s scenes. The mountain landscape, as well as the luxurious restaurant Eggen, have both been given a lot of on-screen time.

If you look down from the edge, it is not difficult to spot the train line Raumabanen, which stretches into the valley. This train line has also been widely used in movies. Some of the scenes in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince were recorded here, and Tom Cruise recorded some well-documented fight scenes in Mission Impossible 7 on the roof of this train.

Her tek slåsshanane Europa si vakraste togreise.|© Paramount Pictures

A quiet fjord village turned upside down

Even a remote location can be tempting. A good example of this can be found in the Hjørundfjord and the tiny village of Sæbø, where Black Widow was recorded.

In this movie, agent Natasha Romanov (Scarlett Johansson) is ”off the grid”, i.e. she has gone under cover. What could possibly work better than poking around on a ferry in a hidden fjord?

During a few hectic days in 2019, Sæbø was filled with trailers, camper vans and plastic tents. A swarm of production people and press journalists wanted to catch a glimpse of the movie star.

In between all this, you could find Mats Riise. He came into close contact with it all, as the shop he works in was the location for the main character's shopping trip. Pictures of Scarlett Johansson taken by the press outside the store have become popular for tourists visiting the village.

Riise tells that already a week after the recording, a mother and a son drove for seven hours to take a picture outside the shop.

It is difficult to say whether someone comes here just because of the movie, or whether it is just something fun to do once they are here. Riise seems to believe the latter:

– We are basically a quiet village. Visitors mostly come to go fishing or mountain hiking, but young people may think that the visit to Sæbø has become somewhat more exciting.

Hjørundfjord lies in the middle between the jagged and steep Sunnmøre Alps.|© Håvard Myklebust

Spend the night in Hjørundfjorden

From the innermost fjord to the vast ocean

The most attractive part about the Norwegian landscape may seem to be the fjords and the mountains. The ocean, however, also has some movie magic to offer.

A little further northwest in the county, you will find one of Norway's most famous stretches of road: Atlanterhavsvegen – the Atlantic Road.

The major production in this area was the James Bond film No time to die, including the classic Bond car Aston Martin. Spectacular roads for a fierce car chase!

Here, you do not need a high speed to feel the thrill in your stomach. Crossing the large and small bridges between the islets, surrounded by the ocean, you will probably rather focus on processing your impressions than stepping on the gas pedal.

Atlanterhavsvegen - the world's most beautiful car journey|© Terje Rakke/Nordic Life/Fjord Norway

How to get there

Would you like to discover the different locations above on your own? To reach them, you can start either from the town of Ålesund in the south, Kristiansund in the north, or travel to Molde in the middle. You may even arrive at Åndalsnes by train! No matter where you are, you will not be far from a location that has taken the breath away of both producers and the audience!

Film locations in Møre and Romsdal|© Peil AS
  1. Atlanterhavsvegen: James Bond og Succession
  2. Åndalsnes / Rauma / Trollstigen: Succession, Harry Potter, Mission Impossible, Black Widow, Troll
  3. Valldal / Gudbrandsjuvet: Succession, Ex Machina
  4. Sæbø / Hjørundfjorden: Black Widow
  5. Hellesylt: Mission Impossible

Related articles