30 October 2021

Amsterdam, Netherlands




 
After the 2001 remake of the film Ocean's Eleven had become a huge success, a second movie went into production. Now titled OCEAN'S TWELVE, since a twelfth member was added to the team of eleven master thieves led by Danny Ocean (George Clooney): his wife Tess (Julia Roberts). The 13 most important actors from the first film all returned for this sequel.

Ocean's Twelve, 1:44:49
The story continues when casino owner Terry Benedict (Andy Garcia) tracks down all eleven thieves who stole US $ 160 million from him. He demands not only the money back but also US $ 38 million in interest. To repay him and thus avoid prison, Danny Ocean comes up with a plan to steal, among other things, the Vanderspeigle Getuigschrift, the oldest stock certificate in the world. This document of the East India Trading Company resides in Amsterdam.

In the first draft of the screenplay, Rembrandt's painting The Night Watch was to be stolen from the Rijks Museum. Because the museum was being renovated and a large painting is difficult to steal, this idea was quickly dropped.

Brouwersgracht, Amsterdam, 21 July 2021
Filming started on 16 March and ended on 24 August 2004. The film was shot in various locations in America and Europe. The production spent three weeks in the Netherlands, from 5 May to 20 May 2004. Most scenes were filmed in the centre of Amsterdam and, in addition, on 14 May at the Haarlem railway station and on 15 and 16 May at The Hague city hall. For an overview of all Dutch locations from this film, see my blog Hollands Decor (in Dutch).

On 31 January 2015, we visited a number of locations in Amsterdam for the first time. Because it got dark quite quickly, we did not go any further than the Herengracht, the Handboogstraat and the Reguliersgracht. In July 2021 we (re)visited a large part of the Amsterdam locations.

Amsterdam is introduced by nine random images of the city, each with a letter from its name. Director Steven Soderbergh returned to Amsterdam with his cameraman to make this sequence. When I rewatched the film on Netflix, I noticed that the letters were gone.
The letter A is the Amstel with the Bakkerstraat on the left, seen from 's Gravelandseveer. The houseboat in the foreground is still here.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:08
Amstel, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

The letter M is the corner of Prinsengracht and Reguliersgracht. The building at 92 with the stork in the niche dates from c. 1675. The stork could refer to the midwife who lived here in the 17th century or to the distillery De Ooievaar (The Stork), founded in 1883.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:09
Reguliersgracht, Amsterdam, 21 July 2021

The letter S is a view of the canal Singel and Oude Leliestraat, seen from Torensluis.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:09
Singel, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

The letter T is numbers 187 to 199 on Oudezijds Achterburgwal. This location was the hardest to trace, even location manager Tjarco van Wijck could not remember the address, only that it was a canal. On the website Stadsherstel I found a photo showing the houses in even worse state than in the film. No address was given, but with the help of the gable stone on the far left and the website Gevelstenen van Amsterdam, I was able to find the canal. The houses have since been renovated.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:10
Oudezijds Achterburgwal, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

The letter E is the corner of Nieuwmarkt and Geldersekade. The building above café De Zon has been painted completely white.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:11
Nieuwmarkt en Geldersekade, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

The letter R is Nieuwmarkt 12, a restaurant, and 14, a coffee shop, to the left of café De Zon.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:11
Nieuwmarkt, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

The letter D is the corner of Spuistraat and Molsteeg. In the background on the right, part of the Nieuwe Kerk (New Church) is visible.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:12
Spuistraat en Molsteeg, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

The letter A is the Gravenstraat with again the Nieuwe Kerk on the right.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:12
Gravenstraat, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

The letter M is the bicycle parking on Stationsplein near Central Station. The trees seen in the film have disappeared.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:13
Stationsplein, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

Danny Ocean, Rusty Ryan (Brad Pitt), Linus Caldwell (Matt Damon) and their companions arrive by taxi at the Hotel Pulitzer at the same time as the Arsenal soccer team. This hotel really exists, but the entrance in the film is of restaurant Jansz on Reestraat 8, on the corner of Keizersgracht. The entrance to the real Pulitzer hotel is around the corner at Prinsengracht 323. The red flag in the background is from Pulitzer's Bar at Keizersgracht 234. The Arsenal bus is standing on the Kees Fensbrug. Filming on Keizersgracht took place on 4 May.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:21
Keizersgracht, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021
Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:21
Kees Fensbrug, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021
Ocean's Twelve, 0:22:26
Keizersgracht, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

The next day, Danny, Rusty and Linus walk from the Heiligeweg to coffeeshop De Dampkring (The Vapour Circle) on Handboogstraat 29. The signs on the left side, including 'Beurs Café' and 'hotel', are set pieces. Beurs Café really exists but is located at Beursplein 5. Filming at Handboogstraat took place on 19 May.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:24:10
Heiligeweg, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021
Ocean's Twelve, 0:24:26
Handboogstraat, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021
Ocean's Twelve, 0:26:53
Handboogstraat, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

The stock certificate is in the collection of antiques dealer Van der Woude (Jeroen Krabbé). He lives at Herengracht 497, which is in real life is the Kattenkabinet. The collection of this museum consists of art objects representing cats. The frame at the entrance is a set piece. Later in the film, during the heist, the building can be seen at night. Filming on Herengracht took place on 7 May.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:30:59
Kattenkabinet, Herengracht 497, Amsterdam, 31 January 2015
Ocean's Twelve, 0:34:29
Kattenkabinet, Herengracht 497, Amsterdam, 31 January 2015

Basher Tarr (Don Cheadle), one of the thieves, is standing on the roof of Huis De Vicq at Herengracht 476 to keep an eye on Van der Woude's home. The Vijzelstraat can be seen in the background. The statue of the eagle does not have a frame in reality, this is also a set piece. Later in the film, the building can be seen from the Kattenkabinet. Since 1981, the building is the office of the Prince Bernhard Culture Fund.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:31:20
Herengracht en Vijzelgracht, Amsterdam, 31 January 2015
Ocean's Twelve, 0:41:20
Huis De Vicq, Herengracht 476, Amsterdam, 31 January 2015

Early in the evening Danny and Rusty walk along the Kloveniersburgwal, cross the Nieuwe Doelenstraat and stand still on the Aluminium Bridge. This scene was filmed on 6 May.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:32:42
Kloveniersburgwal, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021
Ocean's Twelve, 0:32:45
Nieuwe Doelenstraat, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021
Ocean's Twelve, 0:33:01
Aluminiumbrug, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021
Ocean's Twelve, 0:33:18
Aluminiumbrug, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

After the heist, Europol detective Isabel Lahiri (Catherine Zeta-Jones) meets her Dutch colleagues Paul (Jeroen Willems) and his partner (Chris Tates) on the Herengracht.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:38:04
Herengracht, Amsterdam, 31 January 2015
Ocean's Twelve, 0:38:10
Herengracht, Amsterdam, 31 January 2015
Ocean's Twelve, 0:38:15
Herengracht, Amsterdam, 31 January 2015

To leave the hotel unseen, Danny, Rusty and the others dress up as members of the Arsenal soccer team. Keizersgracht and Reestraat again, seen from the other side.

Ocean's Twelve, 0:52:34
Keizersgracht, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021
Ocean's Twelve, 0:52:45
Reestraat, Amsterdam, 20 July 2021

Screenshots © Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc./Village Roadshow Films (BVI) Limited