I have not written anything new for a while, and this time is not about matte painting, but on a very similar perspective trick.
These small epic films also are known as "peplums" used very often perspective trick with foreground miniatures and matte glass paintings. Most of the Italian art directors of that time were very well aware on the use of model tricks.
I enjoy watching these films, mostly for the artistic works, set building, miniatures, matte painting, monsters and fantasy creatures. I have found four Italian "Sword and sandal "films that used the same real location enhanced with foreground hanging miniatures
The real location is Palazzo della Civiltagrave del Lavoro, Rome.
The first two films were directed by Pietro Francisci, who had a full knowledge of these perspective tricks.
1. La regina di saba /The Qeen of Seba (1952)
A huge model miniature of and impressive temple cleverly filmed as a foreground miniature. That big model must be supported from the upper part and left side with an horizontal support. The man on the chariot at right doesn´t move so he can hide the vertical support of the miniature. The shadow of the model can be seen on the foreground floor.
2. Ercole Sfida sansone / Hercules, Samson & Ulysses (1963)
Another beautiful foreground miniature perfectly matched with the perspective of the first floor of the arches facade.
3. Messalina venere imperatrice (1960,Vitorio Cotafavi)
This time is a frontal hanging miniature facade of a temple that covers completely the real building. The miniature was again hanged from the upper part.
4. Giants of tesalia / I giganti della tessaglia (1960 Ricardo Freda)
Another hanging miniature of a temple facade, with an open door from which we can see one of the arches of the original building.
5. I dieci gladiatori (1963, Gianfranco Parolini) On this occasion they used the location as it really is.