An April trip to 1960s Berlin on the Spy Bridge.

On April 1 and 2, Windows on Art will be in Berlin for a spy weekend: in fact, we will visit the locations of Spielberg's latest film, Bridge of Spies.

April 1 and 2 will be a spy weekend for Windows on Art: we were invited by none other than 20th Century Fox Italy to visit Berlin and the locations where Oscar-winning director Steven Spielberg’s latest film, “Bridge of Spies,” starring Tom Hanks, was shot.

Tom Hanks e Steven Spielberg sul set de Il ponte delle spie
Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg on the set of The Bridge of Spies.

Based on a true story, the film sees the former Forrest Gump play the part of James Donovan, a lawyer assigned by the CIA to travel to the capital of Germany to negotiate the release of a young American airman in exchange for a Soviet secret agent, played by Mark Rylance, fresh off an Oscar for best supporting actor thanks to this masterful performance (the film, by the way, garnered six 2016 Oscar nominations, including one for best picture).

In fact, on the afternoon of Friday, April 1, the stops include Checkpoint Charlie, once an important checkpoint of the Berlin Wall; Potsdamer Platz, which separates the old eastern and newer western parts of the city; the Brandenburg Gate, a neoclassical-style gateway that is a famous and important Berlin landmark; and concluding with a visit to the Russian Memorial and the Russian Embassy.

Checkpoint Charlie nel 1970
Checkpoint Charlie in 1970. Credit

Porta di Brandeburgo
Brandenburg Gate. Credit

On April 2 we will drop by Bornholmerstrasse, a former border crossing through which people could enter East Berlin, see the remains of the Berlin Wall near what was once the Nordbahnhof station, after which it will be the turn of the Wall Memorial on Bernauer Strasse. We will then move along Friedrichstrasse, then it will be time for a visit to the Palace of Tears (Tränenpalast), which served as a deputy place for expatriation controls for those traveling to West Berlin. In the afternoon, we are scheduled to visit the Allied Museum, which preserves artifacts from the Western powers that divided Berlin, and in conclusion, we will see the Glienicke Bridge (Glienicker Brücke), or Spy Bridge, which gives the film its title and connects Berlin with the city of Potsdam, crossing the Havel River. If you are curious about what role this bridge plays in the film, all you have to do is download Spielberg’s new masterpiece on the App Stores from March 31 (via these links: iTunes Google Play), or buy the dvd or blu-ray from April 7 (you can already order it on Amazon.

To follow our coverage of the visit in real time, just log on to our Facebook page or Twitter account and keep an eye on the hashtag #thepontedellespie. For Windows on Art, I will be there, Gabriele! Auf wiedersehen!

Memoriale del Muro di Berlino
Berlin Wall Memorial. Credit

Glienicker Brücke
Glienicker Brücke Credit

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