The house on the Big Fish set bursts into flames after being struck by lightning

A house that appeared in Tim Burton’s 2003 fantasy film Big fish burned down after a lightning strike.

The film’s fictional “Town of Specter,” which has become a tourist attraction on Jackson Lake Island in Alabama, is currently inhabited by goats.

“We lost a home in the town of Specter to a lightning strike tonight,” the private island said in a Facebook post on Monday (June 3). “All the goats were safe under the church. Thank you Millbrook Fire Department.”

On Tuesday (June 4th) the island was open to visitors. “It’s the morning after one of our homes in Specter was lost to fire,” read a second post. “The rest of the city is fine and we will be open every day as usual.”

In the film, Ewan McGregor’s Edward Bloom embarks on a journey in search of a better life and accidentally discovers the strange and beautiful town deep within an enchanted forest.

The city was designed by production designer Dennis Gassner and built specifically for the film. It includes a cluster of houses, a church, and a catenary with shoes dangling from it.

Big fishbased on the 1998 novel of the same name by Daniel Wallace, starring Billy Crudup, Jessica Lange, Helena Bonham Carter, Marion Cotillard and Danny DeVito.

The film received positive reviews and grossed $122.9 million on a budget of $70 million. He also received four Golden Globe nominations, seven Bafta nominations, and an Oscar nomination for Danny Elfman’s original music.

The film was originally slated to be directed by Steven Spielberg, but the filmmaker dropped out to focus on the Bafta-winning director Catch Me If You Can.

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Ewan McGregor and Hailey Anne Nelson in the fictional town of Big Fish

(Zade Rosenthal/Columbia/Tri-Star/Kobal/Shutterstock)

Speak with GQ Speaking about the film’s production, McGregor said it was fun because it “can make amazing things happen.”

“I got to work with elephants in a circus,” he said. “It was just an incredible experience.”

Speaking of working with Burton, he added, “I always hoped that could happen again and I still hope so. I love his imagination.”

He said that Burton’s set design had “a gameplay feel” that felt “so free,” with McGregor likening the director to a “crazy professor.”

The film tells the story of a frustrated son trying to separate fact from fiction in the life of his dying father.

“It’s a movie that a lot of men like because it’s so much about a father and a son,” McGregor said. “Some people come up to me and think about their fathers, and sometimes people talk about their sons. It seems to capture the spirit of the times, and it’s really nice when that happens.”

Emma Bowman

Emma Bowman is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Emma Bowman joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

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