The iconic Lello bookshop in Porto Downtown, sticks out not only for its amazing centennial bookshop allure that combines books and magic settings, but also for inspiring the art work in general; this time, in particular, it drew the attention of the producers of the new action film “Gunpowder Milkshake”, by Israeli director Navot Papusha, a Netflix special.
The iconic Lello bookshop in Porto Downtown, which had been associated with the Harry Potter universe for years (and that was, in fact, something that the author, J.K.Rowlings stated as not being correct) sticks out not only for its amazing centennial bookshop allure that combines books and magic settings, but also for inspiring the art work in general; this time, in particular, it drew the attention of the producers of the new action film “Gunpowder Milkshake”, by Israeli director Navot Papushado, which debuted in Portuguese cinemas on 15 July and features an A-List cast of actors, with such names as Lena Headey, Karen Gillan, Paul Giamatti, Carla Gugino, Angela Bassett, Michelle Yeoh and Ralph Ineson.
Production designer David Scheunemann stated in an interview to Variety magazine that the biggest inspiration to building the inside of the library, which is the set for most of the actions of the film, was the specific decorations and architecture of Lello bookstore. ”We decided not to build a normal library”. Scheunemann stated.
The film, which will soon be available on Netflix, recreates Lello’s iconic red staircase,
“We cannot but be pleased and flattered that the beauty of Lello Bookstore inspired the set of a movie where we can read a powerful metaphor: books can be weapons”, mentions Aurora Pedro Pinto, Lello’s administrators in a news release.
It is worth recalling that Lello is deemed one of "the most beautiful bookshops” in the planet by the London Book Fair International Excellence Awards 2021. It was shortlisted as one of the finalists for the coveted Bookstore of the Year title.
Lello is one of the most ornate bookstores in the world, mixing Neo-Gothic and Art Dec elements, carved wood ceilings, a stain-glassed roof, and an undulating, opulent red staircase. The bookstore building has been classified as a Public Interest Monument. The Bookstore was built in 1906 in Porto by The Lello Brothers (Antonio and Jose). The inauguration day, 115 years ago, in 1906, was captured by Aurélio Paz dos Reis photography: it features a ballerina dancing to the sound of a waltz composed by Alfredo Keil, children listening to stories by Beatrix Potter and a photographer with a bowler hat. Talk about magic, right?