September 10th, 2012


Weird Markings on a Runway at KABQ

While looking at the runways at the Albuquerque International Sunport on Google Maps, I noticed some weird marking on the almost never used 17/35 (North-South) runway. So after a quick Google search, I find that the Avengers movie had done some shooting at the Sunport back in May / June of 2011.

Since I have yet to see the "new" Avengers movie, I did another quick Google search to see if I could find some images as to what they might have been doing out on that runway. Come to find out, the north end of the 17/35 runway doubled as a "Helicarrier" (a flying aircraft carrier) in the movie, which was flying / floating over the ocean. Now for those of you playing the home game and have not been to Albuquerque, we are landlocked in the middle of a fecking desert. The most water we have is the "mighty" Rio Grande, which really is not that mighty.

Above is a top down image of the "Helicarrier" from the movie. Towards the top of the image, you can see the now removed markings on the runway of the Helicarrier. And if you look closely, you can even match up where the extra pavement on the sides of runway match with the removed markings.

Another image from the movie. This one clearly shows the markings and looks out over the non-existent ocean. This is not the first time a movieshoot has used an runway to double as somthing else. In the Matrix Reloaded, the freeway chase was actually shot on a constructed set at the old decommissioned Alameda Naval Air Station, the same place MythBusters do a lot of shooting at. For the Matrix Reloaded, they actually constructed a full 6-lane freeway, 1.5 miles in length, complete with on/off ramps and load bearing bridges!

I must say that sometimes I am blown away by Hollywood's ability to turn something in to something completely different. Now, I know of lot of this is done via computer effects, but still, I am surprised when I see something like this done on a real location, as opposed to a sound-stage.
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