Press release

Iconic Spaghetti Junction featured on big screen

Spaghetti Junction featured in Steven Spielberg’s big-screen adventure Ready Player One

Image of Spaghetti Junction

It’s stood tall above the city of Birmingham for the past 50 years – and now the foundations of Spaghetti Junction have played a part in Steven Spielberg’s new big-screen adventure Ready Player One, now in cinemas.

Highways England facilitated filming for Ready Player One underneath the iconic structure – known officially as Gravelly Hill interchange - in August and September 2016.

The towering concrete columns, some reaching to 80 feet high, formed the ideal backdrop to the film, which is in cinemas now.

Special templates featuring graffiti were stuck to the concrete structures and various props added into the set, including cars and tyres, with a ‘camp’ constructed for the new film.

The crew took considerable effort to protect the structure and ensure nothing was damaged during filming. Emergency planning officer for Highways England, Frank Bird, said:

We’re thrilled to finally see the structure on the big screen and we were more than happy to facilitate filming for the staff and crew that were down on-site.

We spent considerable weeks working with the film company and producers and they were really pleased to be allowed access underneath the road. It’s not something that we do every day, but as it was a new Steven Spielberg film, it was an opportunity we couldn’t refuse. Those travelling on the road had no idea what was taking place underneath and that is testament to the hard work and organisation that went into this facilitating this project.

Work started on Spaghetti Junction some 50 years ago this year and it’s great to see that the road continues to hold international acclaim.

The structure continues to carry more than 220,000 vehicles every day and is subject to regular maintenance projects, many of which go unseen by the travelling public.

General enquiries

Members of the public should contact the Highways England customer contact centre on 0300 123 5000.

Media enquiries

Journalists should contact the Highways England press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer.

Published 4 April 2018