The Hijacking of Flight 601: Exploring All Filming Locations

‘The Hijacking of Flight 601’ or ‘Secuestro al vuelo 601’ is a Spanish-language miniseries that chronicles the true events of the longest aerial hijacking in Latin American history. On May 30, 1973, two hooded men board a Cali to Bogotá flight in Colombia and pull out concealed firearms after the plane takes off from its stop in Pereira. The hijackers demand the release of fifty political prisoners, threatening to destroy the plane and kill everyone on board if their demands are not met. When the government refuses to negotiate with the hijackers, it is up to the captain and two brave stewardesses to outwit the armed men and save the lives of their passengers.

Created by Pablo Gonzalez and C.S. Prince, the Netflix series transports us to 1973 Colombia, introducing us to the main characters in Cali as they congregate on Flight 601. As the hijacking narrative unfolds, our viewpoints switch between the tense atmosphere within the passenger aircraft and the on-ground negotiators and authorities in Bogota. For the purpose of the recreation of the historical incident, the show utilizes multiple sites across several areas.

Where is The Hijacking of Flight 601 Filmed?

Filming for ‘The Hijacking of Flight 601’ is largely done using a studio in Bogotá, with some scenes being filmed in Cali, Colombia. Principal photography began in late June 2023 and was wrapped up for the first season within a few months. Some shots of the show also feature 1970s-style grainy film footage with the historically used 4:3 aspect ratio that further immerses us in its events. Let us take a closer look at which shooting sites are selected to recreate the Netflix show.

Bogota, Colombia

The production team captured the interior scenes of the aircraft using a soundstage in a movie studio located in the capital city of Bogota. The city became a natural filming location for these scenes as it is the country’s hub for filmmaking, with independent film studios of varying sizes and a vast talent pool of experienced film crew members. For ‘The Hijacking of Flight 601,’ the plane set was built on a soundstage, and the views out of its cockpit were simulated with a massive, curved volume screen. The screen would display the appropriate background environment as required during cockpit scenes of the plane on the ground and in the air.

Cali, Colombia

For some shots of the city and airport area seen in ‘The Hijacking of Flight 601,’ the team ventured to Cali, located in southwestern Colombia. The city was an important piece of the puzzle when it came to narrating the true story aspect of the show, and thus, parts of it were authentically recreated using its locations. Cali is known for its wealth of colonial architecture, with well-preserved buildings dating back to the Spanish colonial era, allowing filmmakers to travel back in time while using them as backdrops. Cali is surrounded by stunning natural landscapes, including the Andes Mountains and the Cauca River Valley, which you may have seen in ‘Narcos,’ ‘Cobra Verde,’ and ‘The Snitch Cartel.’

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