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Wednesday December 19th 2018

Mission: Impossible 2 | 1999

Mission: Impossible 2 filming location: Bare Island Fort, Bare Island, La Perouse, Sydney, New South Wales
Mission: Impossible 2 location: the hideout of villain Sean Ambrose: Bare Island Fort, Bare Island, La Perouse, Sydney | Photograph: Wikimedia / Adam.J.W.C.

John Woo's deliciously stylish but empty sequel to Mission: Impossible was made almost entirely in Australia, around Sydney, New South Wales, except for the dizzying rock-climbing scene (that really is Tom Cruise in all but one shot, though supporting cables were removed digitally), which was shot at Dead Horse Point State Park, about 15 miles southwest of Moab, near the location of the final scene of Thelma And Louise in southwest Utah.

The hideout of villain Sean Ambrose (Dougray Scott) is Bare Island Fort at the entrance to Botany Bay, about nine miles south of central Sydney. The Fort was built in 1885 to protect Botany Bay, regarded as the 'back door' to the city, from a feared Russian invasion. The Island,which can be be visited by guided tour, is connected to the suburb of La Perouse by footbridge.

Ambrose's other waterside retreat was built for the film (and dismantled afterwards) at Bradley's Head, a peninsula overlooking Sydney Harbour south of the Mosman district, northeast of the city.

Nyah Nordoff-Hall (Thandie Newton) steals images from the digital camera at Royal Randwick Racecourse, Alison Road, in the Sydney suburb of Randwick, just south of Centennial Park. The character name, by the way, seems to be a nod to Charles Nordhoff and James Norman Hall, the authors of Mutiny on the Bounty.

The motorbike chase was filmed a few miles further south at Boora Point, on the coast near Malabar.

More action scenes took in the area around Governor Macquarie Tower and Governor Phillip Tower, twin 90s hi-rise buildings in Sydney's Central Business District near Circular Quay, Sydney. The headquarters of the – fictional – BioCyte company is Governor Phillip Tower, 1 Farrer Place.

Mission: Impossible 2 filming location: Boomerang, Billyard Avenue, Elizabeth Bay, Sydney, New South Wales
Mission: Impossible 2 location: the 'Seville' mansion: Boomerang, Billyard Avenue, Elizabeth Bay, Sydney | Photograph: Wikimedia / Clytemnestra

The 'Seville' scenes were also shot in Australia, on Argyle Place in The Rocks, the revived historic core at the foot of the Sydney harbour Bridge. The mansion is the city's most expensive house, Boomerang, Billyard Avenue, on the waterfront at Elizabeth Bay. A private home, it was built in 1926 for wealthy Sydney music publisher Frank Albert, and named after Frank's father's business trademark.