Sony Pictures has confirmed that the Gran Turismo Movie filming is now underway, with a social media post revealing that the crew is at the Hungaroring in Hungary.
The post, a rare joint Tweet from both the Sony Pictures and Gran Turismo accounts (and flagged with the site’s hastily resurrected gray “official” tick), shows the traditional movie clapperboard — used to synchronize sound and video — sporting a mis-colored GT logo, ahead of a somewhat blurry background:
However the image isn’t quite blurry enough to disguise what’s going on. There’s a line-up of four Nissan GT-Rs — at least two of which are Nismo models — on a race track. The track in question is the Hungaroring in Hungary, which hosts the annual Formula 1 Hungarian Grand Prix.
The circuit’s own wordmark on the pit buildings is covered with a flag bearing the phrases “GT Racing Academy” (with the GT logo), and interestingly the cars are pointing the wrong way — facing the final corner but on the far side of the finish line.
In addition, the Tweet finally confirms what we suspected about its plot back when it was officially announced: it will be based on the story of GT Academy winner Jann Mardenborough.
Mardenborough’s is arguably the biggest success story of the GT Academy program. After winning in 2011, he went on to win races in British GT, GP3, and the Toyota Racing Series, as well as earning an LMP2 class podium at Le Mans.
After another Le Mans run — in the ill-fated Nissan NISMO GT-R LMP1 car — he took on Super GT, in both the GT300 and GT500 classes, and Super Formula. Currently he’s the simulator driver for the Nissan e.dams Formula E team.
Although the British driver is the inspiration for the story, which also focuses on a young gamer who wins a Nissan-sponsored competition and becomes a racing driver, it’s likely to be a fictionalized account. That means the lead character, played by Archie Madekwe (See), probably won’t be Mardenborough himself but will be based on him.
Other actors already confirmed for the movie include Djimon Hounsou (Shazam!) and Geri Halliwell (Crank 2) as the character’s parents, David Harbour (Stranger Things) as his racing mentor, Orlando Bloom (Lord of the Rings) as a marketing executive, and Darren Barnet (Never Have I Ever) as a rival driver.
The clapperboard also confirms award-winning camera operator Jacques Jouffret (Deepwater Horizon), who serves as director of photography. Aerial photographer Fred North (Fast & Furious 9) has also shared some footage of his helicopter — complete with silver Gran Turismo logo — performing low-level flights at the circuit on his Instagram.
Neill Blomkamp (District 9) is directing the film, based on a script by Jason Hall (American Sniper). The Gran Turismo movie is set for a release on August 11, 2023.
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