Friday, November 24, 2023

Croatian cowboy town turns into tourist attraction [archived news article]

 The Dubrovnik Times

By Mark Thomas

July 27, 2016

The first movie about the adventures of Winnetou, the legendary Indian chief from the novels of Karl May, was filmed in Croatia in 1962. After that, nine more films were filmed by the West German filmmakers in co-production with the Croatian film house Jadran film at various Croatian locations such as the National Park Paklenica, the National Park Krka and the National Park Plitvice Lakes, as well as on the mountain of Velebit, in the canyon of the Zrmanja River near Zadar, etc.

Last year the trilogy about the new Winnetou adventures was filmed at twenty locations in Croatia by the producer Philipp Stölzl and should be launched this year. After the filming was over the set locations had to remain untouched and in secret until the film was distributed.

The new Roswell, a mythical cowboy town which Karl May made famous in his novels, was built near Fuzine in the heartland of the Gorski Kotar region in the Primorje-Gorje County for the filming of new Winnetou and is quickly becoming a new tourist attraction.

With the permission of the production team, in the forest only 5 kilometres from Fuzine, a film set of the western town will open its doors to tourists. Fans of Winnetou have already showed great interest in touring the famous set and are even starting to become very impatient. Tourists have even managed to find their own way to the cowboy town by using their GPS devices.

In the famous western town, there are dozens of various objects – a meat market, a brewery, a Chinese laundry, a sheriff's office, a notorious Yuma prison, a few empty coffins, as well as the railway connecting the town to Fuzine. The founders of the town in the new Winnetou film are gold diggers who resell their gold in Rijeka – the Governor's Palace.

Apart from the natural beauties the Winnetou producers were thrilled with one more thing – natural disasters. After the forest cutting by the state company Croatian Forests (Hrvatske šume d.o.o.) which had to be done due to the freezing of trees, many craters remained in the forest in which the producers saw a great opportunity for their natural film set.

For all lovers of western films, the film industry and unusual tourist attractions this film set will be a real treat. It will also improve the tourist business in the region placing it on the list of world-famous film locations.

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