Everything you need to know about the new Tetris movie filmed in Glasgow

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Morrison Street features as Moscow in the new movie, filmed in Glasgow.

Glasgow was given a Soviet makeover as it stood in for Moscow in the latest Tetris trailer that released last Friday, February 17.

It’s looking like our fair city is set to feature heavily in the new film, but not as itself - or New York, like in the new India Jones film, or even Gotham, as seen in the brief flashes we got of the cancelled Batgirl film - but as a stand-in for 1980’s Russia.

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Where was the new Tetris movie filmed?

Glasgow was given a make-over and greyscale filter to make the city look a bit more Soviet. Prestwick Airport was even used for a scene.

Filming locations in Glasgow include Paisley Road West, West Regent Street, Morrison Street, Battlefield Road and Hampden Park.

Exterior shots at 95 Morrison Street outside the old Cooperative buildings stood in for 1980s Moscow. Empty offices in Tradeston were used for filming scenes for the movie. They were later used for police station scenes in the television series Irvine Welsh’s Crime.

Other locations around Scotland have also been used - such as Aberdeen, Edinburgh, and Ayrshire - which all feature as a stand-in for Soviet Union locations. Tetris was one of the first films made in Scotland after Covid halted productions, with shooting starting in December 2020.

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All the shooting for the film took place between December 2020 and February 2022 - with reshoots later in the year of 2022.

Nikita Efremov stars as Alexey Pajitnov in Tetris.Nikita Efremov stars as Alexey Pajitnov in Tetris.
Nikita Efremov stars as Alexey Pajitnov in Tetris.

Who is starring in the new Tetris film?

The film stars Taron Egerton, a young actor most-known for his recent role as a young Elton John in Rocketman.

Toby Jones will co-star in the film alongside Egerton is the role of Robert Stein. The full cast list is as follows:

  • Taron Egerton as Henk Rogers
  • Toby Jones as Robert Stein
  • Nikita Yefremov as Alexey Pajitnov
  • Roger Allam as Robert Maxwell
  • Anthony Boyle as Kevin Maxwell
  • Togo Igawa as Hiroshi Yamauchi
  • Ken Yamamura as Minoru Arakawa
  • Ben Miles as Howard Lincoln
  • Matthew Marsh as Mikhail Gorbachev
  • Rick Yune as Larry

For a long-while the movie remained partially uncast as the director struggled to fill the roles of real-life businessmen Robert and Kevin Maxwell and the game’s Russian creator, Alexey Pajitnoc, have yet to be filled.

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What is the new Tetris film about?

Togo Igawa, Nino Furuhata and Taron Egerton star in Tetris.Togo Igawa, Nino Furuhata and Taron Egerton star in Tetris.
Togo Igawa, Nino Furuhata and Taron Egerton star in Tetris.

Unlike the recent Super Mario Brothers or Sonic the Hedgehog video game adaptation movies, the film for Tetris does not focus on the Tetronimos (yes that’s what the little Tetris blocks are called) fighting a dragon or saving a princess.

Instead it focuses on the story behind the game and the legal battle that went into getting the game published on the original Gameboy - all set in the 1980’s inside Gorbachev’s crumbling Soviet Union - desperately clinging on to power as tensions remain high with Reagan’s America.

The Tetris film follows Henk Rogers as he fights to get Tetris published in America (and eventually worldwide) and also elaborates on the identity of the game’s creator, Alexey Pajitnoc, a Russian programmer based in Moscow.

Big players in the battle for Tetris include gaming giants Nintendo and Atari, the KGB, newspaper tycoon Robert Maxwell and his son Kevin, and Soviet Union president Mikhail Gorbachev in the late 1980s.

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Nikita Efremov and Taron Egerton star as Alexey Pajitnov and Henk Rogers in Tetris.Nikita Efremov and Taron Egerton star as Alexey Pajitnov and Henk Rogers in Tetris.
Nikita Efremov and Taron Egerton star as Alexey Pajitnov and Henk Rogers in Tetris.

Who is directing the new Tetris film?

The Scottish filmmaker, Jon S. Baird, is directing the new Tetris movie. This will be his second feature film - his first being Stan & Ollie, which saw Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly play the comedy legends towards the end of their career together.

The Aberdeen-born director admited he knew nothing of the international battle to secure the rights of Tetris before making the film.

Baird was in talks with producer and director Matthew Vaughn about making a new film in his Kingsman franchise, which Egerton starred in, when the script for Tetris emerged.

When will the new Tetris film come out?

The film is scheduled to premiere at the SXSW Film Festival on March 15, 2023.

It will premiere on Apple TV+ on March 31, 2023.

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