HBO’s The Regime: Where is the Political Satire Filmed?

Under the creative direction of Will Tracy, ‘The Regime’ introduces us to Elena Vernham, an eccentric authoritarian chancellor of a modern European country. Spending the majority of her time within the walls of her palace, Elena grows increasingly detached from the everyday situations in her nation and develops insecurities leading into a spiral of paranoia instead. Against the recommendations of her council, the chancellor takes in a troubled Corporal named Herbert Zubak as a bodyguard. Zubak eventually becomes an unlikely confidant for Elena, and the ruler’s fragile mental state faces further deterioration with the soldier’s misgivings about her safety.

While Elena preaches populist rhetoric, in reality, she begins to crack down on threats to her rule with an iron fist, unnerving members of her cabinet as well as neighboring nations. As the ruler begins to exhibit signs of going full dictator, her fear-driven actions feed into a self-fulfilling prophecy. While the public begins to rise up against her, the regime begins to unravel behind her precious palace walls. The satirical comedy series takes us through the gilded halls and chambers of the chancellor’s palace, following her across opulent backdrops. With the series bringing the frantic politics of a picturesque European nation to life, some may be inclined to learn about the real-world sites utilized in the HBO production.

The Regime Filming Locations

The landscapes and architecture of the imaginary European country in ‘The Regime’ are filmed in Austria, while a substantial portion of the episodes are captured in England. Principal photography for the show began in January of 2023 under the working title, ‘The Palace.’ For the showrunner and actress Kate Winslet, the series created an entertaining experience of filming. Winslet expressed that playing the neurotic chancellor has been a lot of fun. “I have to let the audience know, this is something they are allowed to laugh at,” she said in an interview. Allow us to take you through the specific filming sites seen in the series.

Vienna, Austria

Sprawled along the Danube River, the Austrian capital city of Vienna becomes the ideal filming destination for creating much of the series’ grand venues. The Schönbrunn Palace, formerly belonging to the country’s Habsburg rulers, stands in for Chancellor Elena Vernham’s palace seen in the show. The production team first ventured to the historical site in January of 2023. Local residents spotted the fictional country’s flags draping from Schönbrunn Palace’s facade, with further flags erected across its courtyard. Creator Will Tracy explained in the aforementioned interview that he chose the location of the Vienna Schönbrunn Palace as he found it the perfect metaphor for Elena’s nation, “living in the ruins of their former cultural prestige.”

The grand manor seen in the series is actually the Gartenpalais Liechtenstein at Fürstengasse 1. Also known as The Garden Palace, the regal venue can be booked for personal events and as a filming site. Having historically belonged to the princely family of Liechtenstein, its extravagantly decorated halls and rooms can be spotted in various sequences throughout the ‘The Regime.’

London, England

A bulk of filming for the series is carried out across sites in London. The HBO series makes use of the convenience of Titan Studios, 44 Kendal Ave, in bringing its creative vision to life. An enormous four-story facility, its entire area is leased out to one production at a time, which entails that the show’s crew makes use of its entire 297,352 square feet of production space.

Other Locations in England

The team travels to the quaint English town of Watford to lens scenes at Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden. The 200-acre property was constructed from a former aircraft factory and airfield called Leavesden Aerodrome, one which supplied the British Airforce during the Second World War. The studio is considered one of the few locations in England where large-scale productions like ‘The Regime’ can be made. A city in the English county of South Yorkshire, Sheffield and its Botanical Gardens are a filming site for ‘The Regime.’

Situated on Clarkehouse Road, Broomhall, the gardens boast an immense diversity of flora, some of which can be spotted in the show. The production team arrived at the venue on April 26, 2023, and took up various antiquated props like statues, pots, and lecterns to include in the scenes. A village in the Metropolitan Borough of Rotherham, Wentworth is home to the Wentworth Woodhouse, which is used by the production crew for the show’s interior scenes. The property in Wentworth has the longest facade in the UK and contains 300 rooms. After its renovations, the site served as the grounds for shooting shows and films like, ‘The Crown,’ ‘Darkest Hour,’ ‘Downton Abbey,’ and ‘Victoria.’

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