Mr. Ivernel listed three scenes in the film that were filmed on the Palais Garnier: the arrival of the Russian troupe, filmed in the grand foyer; A conversation between Nureyev and a French dancer, shot on the Garnier terrace with panoramic views of Paris; And shots of the performance hall, filmed from the stage. Filming of “The White Crow” coincided with the opera’s glamorous annual fund-raising gala, to which Mr. Ivernel was invited.
The shooting, as a whole, was an “amazing experience”, Mr Evernel said. Prior to filming, the team was allowed to spend three half-days with the Paris Opera Ballet, where, interestingly, Nureyev would become the ballet director in 1983. They met the dancers, watched rehearsals and toured the costume making Alliers, where Tutus maximizes. It was “all very useful to the director,” Mr. Ivernel said, “because it gave him a better sense of what he liked to become a lead dancer.”
There was just one little prank, recalling Mary Hoffman, who is in charge of the rental of public spaces at the opera. While the crew was busy filming inside the opera house, Mr. Fiennes, who is playing the role of a ballet master, settled in the recently restored tap, a period armchair usually placed behind a protective barrier. “We asked them to leave the seat politically,” Ms. Hoffman said.
Filming inside the opera is a complex process. Prior to the epidemic, shootings took place at night, when there were no more demonstrations or visitors, and they worked throughout the night, running from 11 am to 9 am, when the premises were cleaned for tourists in the morning had gone.
Because the building is a listed national monument, every corner of it is preserved and protected. On Versailles and other French heritage sites, equipment cannot be placed directly on the floor: there should be a layer of protection like a strip of carpet. There are also weight restrictions on camera equipment, and crew are followed everywhere for safety.