Catch-22 built air force base on Sardinia

A US Army Air Force base was built as a set in northern Sardinia for Second World War TV satire Catch-22.

A US Army Air Force base was built as a set in northern Sardinia for Second World War TV satire Catch-22.

Set between 1942 and 1944, the drama is based on the satirical novel by Joseph Heller. The story follows a US airman and his colleagues as they struggle with their collective sanity while flying bombing missions against Axis forces in Italy.

The series was produced for Hulu and Channel 4 by Anonymous Content, Paramount Television and Smokehouse Pictures, with episodes directed by George Clooney, Ellen Kuras and Grant Heslov.

Parts of the UK were in fact initially scouted as stand-ins for period Italy before the production team chose Sardinia as a location base, with shooting also taking place in and around Rome. Italy’s filming incentive support was a key factor in making a regional shoot viable.

A former Second World War airstrip in Olbia in north-east Sardinia became a key location and the team spent three months building their US Army Air Force base.

Catch-22 built air force base on Sardinia
Catch-22
Catch-22

“We had a production office at Cinecitta Studios near Rome, which was also where we shot the bomber interiors,” says Charles Harrington, one of the series’ supervising location managers, in an interview with KFTV.

“We got last-minute permission to land planes at our Sardinian airfield and we shot all summer with a fantastic local crew. Our line producer Enzo Sisti was hugely experienced.”

Scenes set in Rome were shot on location in the iconic city, but in addition the producers shot in the streets of Viterbo, 65 miles north of the capital, and nearby Sutri, both of which doubled for Rome.

Catch-22

“Rome is a very complicated place to shoot,” says Harrington. “In Viterbo and Sutri there were fewer modern elements to change to create the 1940s setting, and there were also fewer paparazzi.”

Given that Clooney was a key creative force on the drama, being able to avoid photographers wherever possible was a crucial advantage.

Aside from key department heads, most of the crew was hired locally.

Italy is likely to get a further boost with the news that the southern town of Matera is to host scenes for the next James Bond film.

See KFTV's production guide for more on filming in Italy.

Images: Hulu/C4

Catch-22 built air force base on Sardinia
Catch-22

A US Army Air Force base was built as a set in northern Sardinia for Second World War TV satire Catch-22.

Set between 1942 and 1944, the drama is based on the satirical novel by Joseph Heller. The story follows a US airman and his colleagues as they struggle with their collective sanity while flying bombing missions against Axis forces in Italy.

The series was produced for Hulu and Channel 4 by Anonymous Content, Paramount Television and Smokehouse Pictures, with episodes directed by George Clooney, Ellen Kuras and Grant Heslov.

Parts of the UK were in fact initially scouted as stand-ins for period Italy before the production team chose Sardinia as a location base, with shooting also taking place in and around Rome. Italy’s filming incentive support was a key factor in making a regional shoot viable.

A former Second World War airstrip in Olbia in north-east Sardinia became a key location and the team spent three months building their US Army Air Force base.

Catch-22

“We had a production office at Cinecitta Studios near Rome, which was also where we shot the bomber interiors,” says Charles Harrington, one of the series’ supervising location managers, in an interview with KFTV.

“We got last-minute permission to land planes at our Sardinian airfield and we shot all summer with a fantastic local crew. Our line producer Enzo Sisti was hugely experienced.”

Scenes set in Rome were shot on location in the iconic city, but in addition the producers shot in the streets of Viterbo, 65 miles north of the capital, and nearby Sutri, both of which doubled for Rome.

Catch-22

“Rome is a very complicated place to shoot,” says Harrington. “In Viterbo and Sutri there were fewer modern elements to change to create the 1940s setting, and there were also fewer paparazzi.”

Given that Clooney was a key creative force on the drama, being able to avoid photographers wherever possible was a crucial advantage.

Aside from key department heads, most of the crew was hired locally.

Italy is likely to get a further boost with the news that the southern town of Matera is to host scenes for the next James Bond film.

See KFTV's production guide for more on filming in Italy.

Images: Hulu/C4

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