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Star Wars Millennium Falcon lands in Ulster for episode 8 filming

By Jonny Bell

Published 12/05/2016

The model of the Millennium Falcon being built on the Star Wars set at Malin Head in Co Donegal
The model of the Millennium Falcon being built on the Star Wars set at Malin Head in Co Donegal
A Millennium, Falcom in Malin Head, Co Donegal Ireland, as filming for the next Star Wars movie will take place there. PA
A set is created in Malin Head, Co Donegal Ireland, as filming for the next Star Wars movie will take place there. PA
Construction underway on the Millennium Falcon at Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey
Construction underway on the Millennium Falcon at Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey
The view of the Star Wars film set from Ardmalin Caravan Park. Pic: Ardmalin Caravan Park
A fleet brought the Star Wars set to Malin Head. Pic: Ardmalin Caravan Park
The view from Ardmalin Caravan Camp. Pic: Ardmalin Caravan Park
The view from Ardmalin Caravan Park. Pic: Ardmalin Caravan Park
Construction underway on the Millennium Falcon at Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey
JJ McGettigan from the Emerald Garrison, a star Wars costuming club, in Malin Head, Co Donegal Ireland, as filming for the next Star Wars movie will take place there. PA
JJ McGettigan from the Emerald Garrison, a star Wars costuming club, in Malin Head, Co Donegal Ireland, as filming for the next Star Wars movie will take place there. PA
JJ McGettigan from the Emerald Garrison, a star Wars costuming club, in Malin Head, Co Donegal Ireland, as filming for the next Star Wars movie will take place there. PA
JJ McGettigan from the Emerald Garrison, a star Wars costuming club, in Farrens Bar in Malin Head, Co Donegal Ireland, as filming for the next Star Wars movie will take place there. PA
JJ McGettigan from the Emerald Garrison, a star Wars costuming club, in Malin Head, Co Donegal Ireland, as filming for the next Star Wars movie will take place there. PA
A Millennium, Falcom in Malin Head, Co Donegal Ireland, as filming for the next Star Wars movie will take place there. PA
JJ McGettigan from the Emerald Garrison, a star Wars costuming club, in Farrens Bar in Malin Head, Co Donegal Ireland, as filming for the next Star Wars movie will take place there. PA
Hazy Zoom - wires and cabling snake through the terrain from base to the Millennium Falcon. Picture James Whorriskey
Construction underway on the Millennium Falcon at Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey
Construction on the millennium falcon which is perched on rocks on the rugged landscape at Ireland's most northerly point - Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey.
Construction on the millennium falcon which is perched on rocks on the rugged landscape at Ireland's most northerly point - Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey.
Construction on the millennium falcon which is perched on rocks on the rugged landscape at Ireland's most northerly point - Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey.
Construction on the millennium falcon which is perched on rocks on the rugged landscape at Ireland's most northerly point - Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey.
Construction on the millennium falcon which is perched on rocks on the rugged landscape at Ireland's most northerly point - Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey.
Construction on the millennium falcon which is perched on rocks on the rugged landscape at Ireland's most northerly point - Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey.
The stunning landscape surrounding the Star Wars set in Malin Head. Pic James Whorriskey
Remote - Malin Head, Ireland's most Northerly point and location for the latest Star Wars movie. Picture James Whorriskey
A mixture of tourists and inquisitive Star Wars fans mingle - Pic at Bamba's Crown, which overlooks the cast and crew tents. Picture James Whorriskey
Cast and crew areas being readied ahead of weekend filming - roads in the area will be closed for several days. Picture James Whorriskey
Cast and crew areas being readied ahead of weekend filming - roads in the area will be closed for several days.Picture James Whorriskey
Cliff path to the Millennium Falcon - private security staff prevent people from getting too close. Picture James Whorriskey
Millennium Falcon Base - scaffolding, fencing and crew buildings surrounding the Millennium Falcon at Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey
Gardai on standby and ready to politely ward of anybody who security deem to have gotten too close for comfort. Picture James Whorriskey
Concealed - A drone hovers to the left of picture, over the Millennium Falcon location - and what's that partially visible on the right? Picture James Whorriskey
Tight security guards the boundaries of the Star Wars set. Picture James Whorriskey
Millennium Falcon base at Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey
Construction underway on the Millennium Falcon at Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey
Crews at the Millennium Falcon site. Picture James Whorriskey
Security try to prevent photography at the location. Picture James Whorriskey
Narrow single track roads are the only way around Malin Head - In the distance the Millennium falcon site. Picture James Whorriskey
Construction underway on the Millennium Falcon at Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey
Private Security posted at public vantage points in Malin Head attempt to prevent photography. Picture James Whorriskey
Construction underway on the Millennium Falcon at Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey
Construction underway on the Millennium Falcon at Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey
New signs erected in many of the surrounding fields - Millennium Falcon in the distance. Picture James Whorriskey
Construction underway on the Millennium Falcon at Malin Head. Picture James Whorriskey
Basecamp at the Millennium Falcon site. Pic James Whorriskey
The landscape overlooking the Millennium Falcon base. Picture James Whorriskey.

In a small corner of Ulster - not that far away - there's a disturbance in the force.

Cast and crew of the new Star Wars have landed on Malin Head as they prepare to shoot the latest installment of the science-fiction fantasy, the as-yet-untitled episode eight.

And one of the film's biggest - and most notable stars - is beginning to make an appearance on the Wild Atlantic Way.

Construction has begun on Han Solo's famous Millennium Falcon as well as what looks like a star base from a far off planet.

Filming is expected to take place over the coming days and last for months.

Road closures have been in place around the area, but this has not stopped eager Star Wars fans flocking to the area to catch a glimpse of the action to get a clue as to what the next film may have in store.

Holiday homes and B&Bs in the area have been reportedly booked solid for months to accommodate the fleet working on the production.

Photographer James Whorriskey says security around the set is intent on trying to maintain the secrets of film.

He said security tried to put a stop to those trying to take pictures from public areas and even at one point called in the gardai.

Despite this he was able to capture some stunning images of one of the silver screen's most iconic figures.

"It would appear that the building of the Millennium Falcon at the Inishowen beauty spot is something that they're not keen on having documented," he said.

Filming has taken place across Ireland, both for JJ Abrams last film and the new blockbuster.

Skellig Michael - a UNESCO World Heritage Site off the Ring of Kerry on the west coast - featured in the 2015 Force Awakens and was centre stage in the first teaser trailer of episode eight.

A Jedi temple has also appeared in Kerry and work is reportedly underway in Cork on a set.

Episode VII: The Force Awakens was the highest grossing movie of all time on its release in December.

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