Baz Luhrmann Films... In Real Life


Baz Luhrmann isn’t just your average eccentric visionary genius. He was THE director of the 90s, breaking teenage hearts across the globe with his ‘Red Curtain Trilogy’ (Strictly Ballroom, Romeo + Juliet and Moulin Rouge!) Everything the man touches turns into a glittery, raucous (often tragic) circus.

Now you can pretend you’re one of his love-damned characters, living it up in Long Island a la Gatsby or cruising down Venice Beach like a regular Mercutio. This is Baz Luhrmann films in Real Life…

Moulin Rouge!

Paris, France

‘The greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return.’

Damn straight.

A bohemian romp through late 19th century Paris - the 'Moulin Rouge!' was a genre-defying masterpiece. Who could forget an absinthe induced tinkerbell (hello Kylie Minogue) or Ewan McGregor storming through the streets singing ‘Roxanne’.

You’ll never dance, sing or look like Satine or Christian but you can lust over their lookalikes at the real life Moulin Rouge. The most famous Cabaret show in the world, it’s all sequins, feathers and nipple tassels drenched in Champagne (they sell a quarter of a million bottles a year).

They have two shows a night (9pm and 11pm) but you need to book waaay in advance.

Romeo + Juliet

Los Angeles, United States

'Romeo + Juliet' - making crotches twitch since 1996…

A modern day adaptation of Shakespeare’s tragedy using original language, no film kept teens in English class like this one. Stunning and devastating, it actually hurts to watch Leo DiCaprio - that face, that 90s hairstyle... (Baz thought so too and wouldn’t have made the film without him). Claire Danes… not so much.

Most of the film was shot in Mexico City where the lead hairdresser was kidnapped and the crew had to pay a $300 ransom… But some scenes were filmed in Miami like the beach scenes at ‘Verona Beach’. But it looks and feels a whole lot like L.A’s Venice Beach - garish colours, billboards, a stretch of sand on front of a busy city…

Stroll down the boardwalk with the funny, tacky ferris wheel at one end and funny, tacky people at the other. You’ll pass taco restaurants, tattoo parlours, fortune tellers and Leo DiCaprio wannabes.

The Great Gatsby

New York, United States

“I knew it was a great mistake for a man like me to fall in love…”

Poor Gatsby, he was a pretty messed up lad really.

Baz’s most recent film, some felt 'The Great Gatsby' didn’t have the spark and originality of his earlier work - but it’s still a whole lot of fun. Those costumes. THAT house…

Set in the Gold Coast of Long Island in New York, Oheka Castle was F.Scott Fitzgerald's real life inspiration for the book. Baz actually filmed in Australia but stuck to these Long Island mansions as his main reference point. He felt they looked like ‘disneyland castles’ and helped to create ‘the idea that Gatsby was building a fantasy’.

Pretend you’ve been invited to one of Gatsby’s legendary parties and visit Oheka Castle itself. There might not be much of a party vibe but you can take a ‘mansion tour’ and explore the acres of land…