Locations, Locations: Edinburgh & Avengers: Infinity War

Edinburgh features in the new trailer for Avengers: Infinity War. But to what extent? We try to find out...

Feature by Peter Simpson | 29 Nov 2017
  • Avengers

Some people watch the trailers for new superhero films to catch up with their favourite Men (Iron, Spider etc), and some people watch them so they can add to their extensive dossier on why their favourite superpowered space vigilante is sooooo much cooler than yours. But in the Avenger-agnostic corner of the office, we've been watching for a very different reason. That's right – hyperlocal geography.

Y'see, parts of Avengers: Infinity War were shot in our home town of Edinburgh. It was a very exciting time, punctuated by the sight of enormous lighting rigs everywhere and one of The Skinny's good friends being completely soaked at 3am by a stagehand slicking up the pavement for an upcoming scene. Said friend tried to hide behind a bin; turns out high-powered water jet beats bin every time. 

So when watching the Infinity War trailer, we turned the YouTube speed waaaay down, donned our best pair of spotter's goggles, and tried to look past the antics of the magical Viking and his fantastic pals. Here are our findings...

Edinburgh Castle? [0:26]
Correct us if we're wrong, but we reckon that's the Scottish capital's most iconic building. Think about it: big building, up a hill, in Edinburgh (where we know they filmed some of this picture). And before you start with your 'But The Skinny, that doesn't look anything like Edinburgh Castle; also, why is Iron Man's hand so massive in comparison to the normal human-sized man that is Mark Ruffalo?', we have two responses. a) Big movies use CGI, so of course it looks different and b) maybe that's the Iron Giant's hand. You know, the Iron Giant from the hit film The Iron Giant. #spoilers

The Queensferry Crossing?!? [0:45]
Fife's a lot more built-up than we remember.

India Buildings? [0:47]
OK, this one could be more legit, as we know that the production did in fact shoot in a number of Old Town locations, and that's a very Old Town-looking staircase. Look beyond the assorted Avengers, and look at that craftsmanship. We assume the great big hole in the thing is a point which will be explored further in the film itself. Trailers!

Waverley Station [1:21]
That architecture! Those glowing ticket machines in the background that remain inexplicably uncovered! This couldn't be more Waverley if it tried, which is to say that it is Waverley Station. Who is this magical man throwing things around in the station, and can he answer the mystery of why the Waverley departure boards seem to cycle through so much quicker than the arrivals? We can't wait here forever for our friend The Iron Man; give us the info. But yes, Waverley, confirmed, good stuff.

Waverley Station, again [1:23]
Yes, it's just another angle from the same scene, but we're counting it. Look at that wall! Who's just been gored with some kind of light spear? Guess we'll have to tune in to find out! Come for the railway architecture, stay for the space fighting.

The Grassmarket ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ [1:28]
We recognise that bench! That looks a lot like the benches from the Grassmarket! We also recognise the wall from the previous shot, which featured a moody and kinda sweaty looking Captain America dressed all in black standing in front of said wall. Had the Cap just been down Sneaky's, partying up before beginning his walk back to Tollcross? Do we think this leads on to a dramatic confrontation in the 24-hour Costcutter on Lothian Road? Are we now reading too much into these bombastic, quick-cut glimpses into a film none of us have seen? The answer to each of the preceding questions is the same: 'Yes, almost certainly'.

Cockburn Street [1:41]
Interior, night: Any Edinburgh Cinema during Infinity War's theatrical run

A: 'Wow! That red fella's just been stabbed in the head! This is ama- What is it now?'
B: 'Is that a UK licence plate?'
A: 'What?'
B: 'You know, I think I recognise those cobbles.'
A: 'How can you recognise cobbles? Are you even watching this film anymore? Put your notepad away, your headtorch is distracting everyone.'

The Meadows?!?! [1:58]

The rampaging hordes, the lush greenery, the big hill in the background. That's the Meadows alright – we can almost smell the overdone barbecue and [illicit substance redacted] now. Plus, it's even cloudy – that's the kind of attention to detail we like 'round here.

Avengers: Infinity War is released on 27 Apr 2018 via Disney. If it doesn't feature a scene in which a Thanos henchman is thrown headfirst into the Greyfriars Bobby statue, we'll be very disappointed.