Southern Spain – Europe’s Wild West

Interestingly, the Sierra Nevada mountains and surrounding deserts in the south of Spain have been used many times as a setting for Western movies. It’s not hard to see why: a cowboy wouldn’t look too much out of place galloping over the dry hills. And for European filmmakers, it’s obviously much cheaper to film in Spain than in the actual Wild West… American directors like to make fun of westerns directed by Europeans, apparently calling those by Italians ‘spaghetti westerns’ and those by Spaniards ‘ paella westerns’.
Movies filmed in southern Spain include Lawrence of Arabia, various parts of Sergio Leone’s movies and the tv series Young Indiana Jones. The landscapes of the region in Spain look very similar to those of northern Mexico and southern America, where many westerns are set – very arid and sandy with not much else…


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