Ramoji Film City!

Last Sunday I went with a few friends to Ramoji Film City, one of the largest film studio complex/amusement park hybrids in the world (out of how many, I don’t know). The place is basically one giant photo opportunity, so I got tons of pictures. To get an idea of what this place is like, think of something like Universal Studios, but without most of the rides, just lots of sets.

You start out in a bus (we opted for one with AC, totally worth it) that cruises around the campus. The bus makes a few stops at some of the larger set pieces, like the mock-airport and maharaja’s court, and then it lets you out into the amusement park area. It’s interesting to see some of the tricks that directors employ in their sets, like the houses where each side has a different facade so they can film a movie showing four different houses and actually only use one. We tried to recreate a few movie scenes at some of the spots, but unfortunately my knowledge of classic Tollywood scenes is a bit lacking. The movie sets included a church, airport, university, library, the Taj Mahal, the American Old West, a skyscraper (miniature version), and more. Apparently lots of movies are made there every year, including a couple of western movies. I wonder how many of those sets I have seen in other movies without realizing it.

Besides the movie sets, other activities of note include the wild west stuntman show, the haunted house, the hedge-elephants, and the carnival games. Probably my favorite thing there, which sadly I didn’t partake in, was the “rain dance”. In the small water-park area they have some sprinklers that shoot water up and they play dance music. People congregate there and just dance in the sprinklers. It was simple and awesome, I only got two poor pictures because I felt creepy taking pictures of kids in bathing suits dancing around. Water parks in the USA need to start adding dance floors to their list of attractions. Another pretty hilarious ride was the complete rip-off of “it’s a small world after all” which only lacked the singing.

At night there is a big dance performance on top of the pirate ship, which was entertaining, but had to compete with the cricket batting cage for my attention. Each of my Indian friends took a round in the batting cage, and unbelievably, I did the best. They swore it was because the machine was pitching slower to me, but the local employees swore that wasn’t the case. I did so well, I got another bonus round for free. I think my one-season coach of the Green Socks tee-ball team would be proud.

Check the photos! As is becoming my custom, check the slideshow here for the raw and sideways photos, or go to my flickr here for titles, comments, and higher quality.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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2 responses to this post.

  1. Did you get to eat at the canteen there? Last I went it was part of the ticket deal. I found the place a little dreary to my taste probably coz there was no ‘rain dance’ during my time! that would have helped matters…

    Reply

    • Posted by aschapman on May 15, 2011 at 5:15 pm

      Yup, the canteen was included. Dreary? Perhaps. It was super hot, and i probably won’t go again for a long time. I didn’t get to explore the gardens yet, so I can always try that. It wasn’t Disney World, but it was a good way to kill a Sunday with some friends.

      Reply

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