Matrix a traffic-stopper
FOR a few hours on Sunday, bustling Sydney was transformed into an empty futuristic metropolis.
Joel Silver, producer of twin sequels to smash hit science fiction movie The Matrix, was overseeing what he called "the most complicated sequence ever put on film".
The 14-minute scene involved a low-flying helicopter with a mounted camera swooping through several abandoned streets and landing in Martin Place in the centre of the city.
A number of streets in central Sydney were closed off to traffic and pedestrians between 3.30pm and 6pm.
Further closures are planned for the next three Sundays.
Directors Andy and Larry Wachowski created revolutionary three-dimensional filming techniques in the first movie, so the movie industry is intrigued by how they will use high-speed airborne sweeps of the city.
Australian actor Hugo Weaving has said the brothers were "talking about the role of the camera being changed enormously".
The $600 million production of the two sequels has been one of the biggest movie projects in Australian film history.
None of the film's Hollywood stars – such as Keanu Reeves and Laurence Fishburne – were involved in yesterday's shoot.
However, during the past year they have been filming in Sydney and have been seen at the city's hottest nightspots.