Tuesday , July 27 2021

Tunisian architecture was an inspiration for Star Wars?



Hotel du LacSource image
MOHAMED ZITOUNI

The days of the Hotel du Lac are the best in comparison to their days, thanks to their distinctive shape, such as an inverted pyramid or a flying bird, as a symbol of a new architectural style characterized by Tunisia in the early seventies.

The hotel was once a symbol of the ambition and stability of Tunisia after it became independent from colonialism, but now it is deserted and carved with years of neglect, and its destiny is suspended.

"The building is now in a rescue stage," says Georges Georges, an architect who co-authored hotel construction plans on behalf of their Libyan owners.

He told the BBC that the renovation of the building would probably cost more than building another place, after additional studies have confirmed their doubts about the weakness of the building's iron frame.

An active Tunisian group in the conservation of archaeological sites, known as "buildings and memories", has launched a campaign to preserve it, highlighting its architectural history.

The building is a distinctive example of an architectural style known as "outgoing architecture" or "hard architecture", derived from a French style known as the "rough concrete" – a 20th century style known for its bold and sculptural design and concrete structures without concrete and metal coating.

"The hotel is a unique testimony of a specific time," said Mohamed Zitouni, an architect from Tunis, who has participated in a campaign to preserve the building. "It's one of the rare buildings after the independence of Tunisia, which highlights vision and maturity."

There have been hopes for the preservation of the hotel, which has a clear relationship with Star Wars in 1977, that the director of the film, George Lucas, embodies part of his imagination about the space in Tunisia. He used the "Tunisian Sahara" as an alternative to "His movie.

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Alamy

Legend of image

The fictional Crayfish in Star Wars

Some in Tunisia believe that the director of the film inspired the design of a warcraft similar to a giant tank called "Sand Crouller" designed by the Hotel du Lac.

The desert sites that appeared in the Star Wars scenes seem to be attractions. But can you prevent the hotel from being demolished?

Did the hotel inspire the director to build the Sand Crueller?

An online call campaign that demands the preservation of the building, promoting the connection between the movie and the hotel, which some consider "myth," says the hotel "supposedly inspired the construction of Sandwell Kroler in Star Wars."

Zaconi later told Focus on Africa that he saw the hotel when he visited Tunisia for the first time, "and was inspired by the idea of ​​drawing or designing a tank like the Hotel du Lac."

A senior crew member, contacted by the BBC to see if there is actually a connection between the building and the vehicle as a tank, said it was "something similar."

But British director Roger Christine, who won the Oscar for Star Wars production, believes that any link is a "weak" argument at best.

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Alamy

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The desert site that appeared in the Star Wars scenes has become a destination for tourists

The Crester vehicle owes to Ralph McQuarry, the legendary American artist who drew the aesthetic views of all the original films of the Star Wars trilogy, Kristian told the BBC.

Lucas entrusted Macquarie with the initial process of movie processing, while still writing the script and formulating her ideas.

"Ralph painted some of his most beautiful paintings, and Sandroller was the most beautiful," said Kristian.

Parts of the vehicle were built in the Elstree studios, near the British capital of London, and sent to Tunisia, and stained the mud design to give it originality.

McCurry said he designed the Sand Crueller vehicle before fixing Tunisia as a potential place for the film, especially since the decision to take the picture took place in 1976 after Lucas visited the country on the recommendation of designer John Barry.

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Getty Images

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Barbican Center in London

Barry and Pat McMarie were no longer alive, but Macquarie's friend, Paul Bateman, assured the BBC that Sand Crouller's preliminaries were ready before April 1975, a year before Lucas's visit to Tunisia.

Future of NASA

Where did Macquarie come from?

In the 1950s, Macquarie served in the US Army in Korea, and Star Wars can see the feeling of giant military equipment and soft weapons.

A group of Algerian soldiers on the border, while shooting in the Tunisian desert, thought that the model of Sand Crouller was already a military device.

"They saw that name, Star Wars, and they thought we were doing a war machine and had to come and make sure it was filming," said Kristian.

After the Korean War, Macquarie dominated the art of painting art equipment, produced cartoons that accompany the television coverage that promoted NASA's Apollo missions, worked with Boeing and produced a manual for mounting the new Jumbo 747.

It was a period of training in the profession, as a kind of mastery of work to become a professional painter in the space industry of the United States, which made Machuari machines of the future convincing.

His work on the Star Wars movie was an advanced project that demonstrates the technological superiority of the American space race that transcended the limits of competition on the ground.

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PAUL BATEMAN

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The initial design of the Sand Cruiser by Ralf Macquarie

Bateman says the idea of ​​designing the gigantic Sand Croller tank comes from NASA's "dragged" cistern vessels, giant vehicles that transported Saturn missiles into the Apollo space program to its launch site.

Bateman says that the idea of ​​the Sand Crewer shaped boat form came from science fiction stories from sandwrecks and boats that were left behind in the desert and somehow evolved to become "literally like a boat."

Science fiction

Some of the ideas expressed in science fiction can be traced back to the style of "hard architecture", an architectural style that emerged in the 1950's in Britain after World War II and became influential when it spread throughout the world, a symbol of science fiction of the time Appears in images of space exploration.

"It was the beginning of the space age and everything was possible," said Felix Turker, an architecture historian who helped manage a campaign to save that architectural style.

In the 1950s and 1970s, the "architectural architecture" of the colonial era coincided with the decolonization of Africa.

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Alamy

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The "giant trackers" of NASA are moving rockets to their space launch site

Some prominent architects of this architectural style have entrusted the construction of numerous large projects, such as museums, universities and hotels, in the countries that obtained their independence: concrete buildings throughout the continent have symbolized modernity and international vision.

"These buildings tend to draw three main rules: material detection, chassis detection and a unique design that remains trapped in memory," said Traker.

The Italian architect Rafael Contagiani designed the Hotel du Lac and believes that the initial design was similar to the design of a pyramid invested in the International Exhibition of Zagreb in 1957.

The inverted pyramidal shape of the hotel in Tunisia was a good solution to the problems in the work, due to the instability of the earth, and the concrete foundation needed a special method of treatment in the construction, a difficult process.

Traker says the location of the hotel was known for its bad smell due to the proximity of a lake at the time it was a sanitation system for Tunisia.

The smell was very bad at ground level, and with the capacity of the hotel to increase in the upper parts compared to the lower floors, the contagious design created the rooms of the hotel with air of rotten air.

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Alamy

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A pyramid building in downtown Abidjan

Tunisia gained independence for 20 years, while the Star Wars was filmed and the country was handed over to filmmakers for several practical reasons.

The movie was relatively small for Lucas; the costs in Tunisia were cheap, and there were great desert sites near where the hotels could accommodate the Hollywood crew.

The hotel industry in Tunisia succeeded in developing after the country's independence to attract foreign visitors. Revenue from tourism has contributed to boosting the economy and contributing to 8 percent of GDP. However, the number of foreign visitors decreased after a series of terrorist attacks in tourist places in 2015, and the sector is currently fighting for a recovery.

Following the Second World War, the style of "hard" urban architecture emerged and was chosen by governments around the world for its exemplary idealism, which made public representatives use public funds to provide buildings for public use.

During the last decades of the 20th century, the taste of these ideals has diminished and their concrete forms of demolition have been subjected. It is possible to be said that the films of this time clearly were influenced by the architectonic style that portrays the future of a desolate and miserable way.

Many of the buildings of this unknown architectural style have become a symbol of the failed policies of past governments: they have also become a candidate for demolition, but interest has recently been renewed for them, fueled by the fear of losing the best buildings forever.

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Alamy

Legend of image

Sand Kroler is a movie company founded by Lucas in Singapore

In 2013, Lucas opened a Singapore-based movie company that shares the name and shape of the Sand Crueller vehicle, covered in glass, inspired by the architectural style.

So why did you link the design of the Hotel du Lac and the Sand Cruiler? Zitouni told the BBC that people working at the hotel used to boast that his building had inspired Lucas.

In 2015, Fortune magazine rated the movie franchise, including box office, domestic and commercial income, to $ 42,000 million, a billion dollars less than Tunisia's GDP this year.


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