Peru on the Big Screen: An International Cinematographic Setting

Peru, with its breathtaking landscapes and rich cultural sites, has established itself as a privileged setting for international cinema. From the action-packed Indiana Jones to the latest adventures in the Transformers franchise, the country offers a diverse and magnificent backdrop that attracts filmmakers from all over the world. Here’s a journey through the landmark films shot in Peru, culminating in the anticipation surrounding the upcoming “Paddington” movie.



A natural and diverse backdrop

Indiana Jones, les Aventuriers de l'arche perdue

Raiders of the Lost Ark (Paramount/LucasFilm)

Peru has been the backdrop for several notable films that have exploited its varied geography, from the Pacific coast to the Andes Mountains. The Indiana Jones saga immortalised the mysteries of the Peruvian jungle in “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull“, as well as its archaeological treasures in the 1981 opus “Raiders of the Lost Ark“, in which the famous adventurer searched for an idol of the Chachapoyas people. For a younger audience, “Dora and the Lost City” also captures the adventurous essence of Peru’s archaeological sites and the mysteries that surround them. Each film shot in Peru helps to highlight its unique landscapes and its heritage and historical wonders, offering a captivating window onto this destination that travellers from all over the world dream of.


Settings that tell stories

Carnet de Voyage au Pérou

Carnet de VoyageThe Motorcycle Diaries (Film4 Productions)

One of the most captivating aspects of cinema is its ability to transform real places into imaginary worlds. Peru is no exception. From the Inca ruins of Machu Picchu in “Aguirre, the Wrath of God” and “The Secret of the Incas” starring Charlon Heston, to the Andean mountains where the characters played by Rosanna Arquette and Jean-Marc Barr meet in Luc Besson’s “The Big Blue“, Peru provides a setting rich in history and culture. These films not only capture the beauty of the sites, but also enrich their narrative by incorporating deep cultural elements that resonate with the audience.

The Motorcycle Diaries” is another remarkable film shot partly in Peru. Starring Gael García Bernal, this film explores the youth of Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara through his epic journey through South America, evoking not only the beauty of the Peruvian landscape but also Guevara’s social and political reflections.


Peru in the Modern Cinema Lens

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts  au Pérou

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts (Paramount Pictures)

Recently, Peru has also played host to large-scale productions such as “Transformers: Rise of the Beasts“, notably in the Cusco region, showcasing its urban and natural landscapes. These projects not only demonstrate the country’s versatility as a film set, but also highlight the efforts of the government and PROMPERÚ to attract international productions.


Our article: Cusco, Peru’s Imperial City


Coming soon: Paddington in Peru

The next chapter in the ‘Paddington’ series promises to take the famous bear back to his native Peru for further adventures. This return to his roots is symbolic, celebrating the cultural links between Peru and this beloved franchise. This new chapter in Paddington’s adventures in Peru offers a unique opportunity to show young audiences the country in a warm, family-friendly light.



The film craze surrounding Peru demonstrates the universal appeal of its landscapes and cultural wealth. Each film made in this magnificent setting contributes to a deeper and more nuanced understanding of Peru, while providing captivating stories that resonate around the world. With the arrival of Paddington and other upcoming productions, Peru is set to continue its role as a star of world cinema, capturing the imagination of film buffs and travellers from all walks of life.




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