Kansai Trip 2011 Pt II: Memoirs Of A Geisha Filming Locations

The majority of Memoirs of a Geisha(2005) was made in the USA but director Rob Marshall did feel it necessary to bring the production to Japan to open up the movie and feel like they were in some very real places rather than on the specially built sets as you can’t replicate the age and beauty of some shrines and temples.

 

Fushimi-Inari Taisha is undoubtedly the most memorable location. It appears after 40 minutes and again on 136 minutes in a flashback scene at the films climax. Accompanied by John Williams’ musical score, it is one of the most beautiful and visually stunning moments in the film where the young Chiyo finally has hope after meeting The Chairman for the first time. She runs through the mesmerizing red torii gates on her way to give money in prayer.

 

The Chairman buys Chiyo some ice-shavings and gives her money which was in the specially built L.A. set. She then runs through the Fushimi-Inari gates (above) and then a bit of film trickery is used to blend that with Yoshimine-dera temple which is actually where the young Chiyo gives away the Chairman’s coins.

Screen Shot 2015-11-18 at 00.40.43 

This temple is a 3o minute bus (#66) ride away from Mukomachi station and the sanmon temple gate (above) is the first time we see it on screen. Chiyo runs through it (40 minutes into the film) and on up to the Kannon-do main temple (below) where she gives her money in prayer before ringing the bell. We see that from inside the temple before the camera pans out and then moves back in over the roof.

Screen Shot 2015-11-18 at 00.41.38 

Screen Shot 2015-11-18 at 00.43.50    

The three storey pagoda is at Kiyomizudera temple (below) and features a few times (16 minutes, 31 minutes, 92 minutes) between scenes in the film; usually just to show that a new day or season has begun.

 

The bridge below appears briefly in the final moments (130 minutes) of the film. It is in the gardens of Heian-jingu shrine which I had never entered on my two previous visits to the shrine and very beautiful they were.

 

The real Gion in Kyoto appears (below) for a couple of seconds directly after we see the Heian-Jingu garden bridge at the 130 minute mark of the film.

 

For other Japan filming locations click on the links below:

You Only Live Twice    Lost In Translation    Kill Bill    Babel    Godzilla    Walk Don’t Run   Into The Sun    Monster    Wasabi    The Grudge    Ju:On The Grudge    The Ramen Girl    The Toxic Avenger Pt II    The Wolverine    Memoirs Of A Geisha    The Last Samurai    House Of Bamboo

About tokyofox

A Leicester City fan teaching English in Japan
This entry was posted in Japan Filming Locations, Japan Travel, Movie Locations and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

35 Responses to Kansai Trip 2011 Pt II: Memoirs Of A Geisha Filming Locations

  1. Pingback: Kansai Trip 2011 Pt I: Fushimi-Inari Taisha | Tokyo Fox (東京狐)

  2. Pingback: Review: Films Set In Japan – ‘Memoirs Of A Geisha’ (2005) | Tokyo Fox (東京狐)

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  4. EW~Ocean says:

    😀 Really interesting. The sites truly are amazing in Japan. :]

  5. Pingback: 11 Filming Location Trips For 2011 | Tokyo Fox (東京狐)

  6. Pingback: Review: Films Set In Japan – ‘Memoirs Of A Geisha’ (2005) | Beyond The Movies

  7. Pingback: 11 Filming Location Trips For 2011 | Beyond The Movies

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  10. No name says:

    Was there yesterday, great place and thanks for the info!

  11. kkim77 says:

    My most favorite scene from this movie. Very beautiful.

  12. Beautiful locations.. this movie was really unforgetable

    • tokyofox says:

      yeah you’re not wrong Francis! These are probably my favourite Japanese filming locations and Fushimi Inari is maybe even the best place I’ve visited in Japan. thanks for your comment

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  14. Pingback: BTM Top 5……Kyoto Filming Locations | Beyond The Movies

  15. Margie says:

    Thanks for sharing! I am really mesmerized by the beautiful scenes in this movie, so much so I am on a quest to visit these places. Your article is really helpful 🙂

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  28. Pingback: Fushimi-Inari Shrine In Kyoto | Tokyo Fox (東京狐)

  29. BS says:

    You forgot the drive through Baboo grove in Arashiyama.

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