Digest>Archives> May/Jun 2018

Lighthouse Built for Movie Filmed in Nova Scotia

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The lighthouse tower begins to take shape in this ...
Photo by: Ervin Olsen

Actors William Dafoe and Robert Pattinson have been signed to star in a new thriller movie titled The Lighthouse. The horror movie is set to take place at the start of the 20th century, and will be about lighthouse keepers in Maine. However, the movie is being filmed in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada.

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The form for the lighthouse structure for the ...

For the movie, a lighthouse facsimile was built at the tip of Cape Forchu Lighthouse’s Leif Erickson Trail, just a short distance from the real 1962 Yarmouth Lighthouse in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. The site was picked because of the wind, rain, and fog that the script calls for, something that actually hindered the building of the lighthouse facsimile structure that was built for the movie.

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The railing for the lantern walkway being ...
Photo by: Ervin Olsen

The lighthouse facsimile structure is 44 feet tall, with an additional 18 to 20 feet added for the lantern, which was made in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. Dean Pearce, owner of East Coast Scaffolding, said that it was a challenge to figure out how to construct the 44-foot bottom section of the tower in the rough weather conditions at Cape Forchu, including fierce winds, bitterly cold temperatures, sleet, and snow.

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The tower, now wrapped in plywood and a special ...
Photo by: Ervin Olsen

The main skeleton tower took three weeks to design, and it incorporates three-foot-deep resin rock anchors and over 48,000 pounds of weights for stability. It is eight-sided and tapers from 18 feet at the bottom to 14 feet at the top with a cantilevered top platform. Pearce said that it is one of the most unique scaffolds ever undertaken in the world, given its location and the forces placed on the frame by Mother Nature. Once the scaffolding was up, the sides were clad in plywood and then wrapped in a thin skin to give the appearance of a weathered look. Upon completion, the entire structure reportedly weighed 95,000 pounds. The final steps were to hoist the lantern and railings that were made by Sani Engineering of Dartmouth and Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.

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Photo by: Ervin Olsen

Filming was expected to end by mid-May, at which time the lighthouse built for the movie is to be demolished and removed from the site.

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The Maine lighthouse facsimile constructed for ...
Photo by: Ervin Olsen

William Dafoe, who was the Green Goblin in the movie Spiderman, will play the role of an old and aging lighthouse keeper. Dafoe has been nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor three times for his roles in Platoon (1986), Shadow of the Vampire (2000), and The Florida Project (2017).

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The fully completed lighthouse with enclosed ...
Photo by: Richard Donaldson

Actor Robert Pattison has received the Best Actor award at the Strasbourg Film Festival for his performance in How to Be (2009). For his work in The Twilight Saga, he earned two Empire Award nominations; he also won eleven MTV Movie Awards, and two People’s Choice Awards.

This story appeared in the May/Jun 2018 edition of Lighthouse Digest Magazine. The print edition contains more stories than our internet edition, and each story generally contains more photographs - often many more - in the print edition. For subscription information about the print edition, click here.

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