Recreate the Hallway Scene from Inception – Part 1 of 2

Discover how to model the hallway scene from Inception.

28 minutes
Blender 2.56
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 4.9/5 (34 votes cast)

In this tutorial you will discover:

  • How to create a complex hotel corridor
  • How to effeciently use arrays and mirrors to save modelling time
  • Dozens of tricks to help you with hard surface modelling

If you’re like me then you watched Inception with your jaw on the floor. Not only was the story thought provocing, but the visuals were fantastic. One scene in particular took Hollywood to new levels by changing the point of gravity mid-way through a fight scene. If you haven’t yet it, I recommend you watch it now.

That scene has been ingrained in my mind ever since, and I’ve always wanted to recreate it in Blender.

The Finished Result

Part 1 - Modelling

Link to the Inception Reference Image


At a Glance

Screenshots from the video:

Next Week:

Be sure to come back next week as we tackle lighting, materials and rendering to create the final image :)

Download finished .blend Recreate the Hallway Scene from Inception - Part 1 of 2, 4.9 out of 5 based on 34 ratings

About Andrew Price

User of Blender for 9+ years. I've written tutorials for 3d World Magazine and spoken at three Blender conferences. My goal is to help artists get employed in the industry by making training accessible and easy to understand. I'm an Aussie and I live in South Korea ;)
  • Bryan Vivas

    Great tutorial Andrew Price! as always!
    I love Arrays It’s a very fast way to perform structures.
    When I finished mine I will post it here.

  • dood

    just a question.. why dont you use the snap during transformation – snap to vertices tool (them magnet like button in the 3d viewport)? It would make the aligning a lot faster and more precise…

  • raviNdra

    Nice Modeling an all over Wonderful !!!!!!!!!!!

  • robin

    can u please tell me how to import dwg cad file in blender 2.5
    please reply sir,

  • Keith Hampson

    Great tutorial.

    What was the key combination, or how did you get the vertices to line up at ~18:07 please ?

  • Mridul

    another great tut thanx again andrew

    i have a problem in smoke simulation – when i set up my simulator i see the smoke on 3d window but nothing appears when i render that… can any one help me:)

    • Raaz Tuladhar

      did u click on play in the render section ?

  • Wood

    Good to see a telant at work. I can’t match that.

  • revo

    Great, i know nothing about 3D…

    But, i want to learn…


  • http://Website(optional) ahmad talaei

    that ecxllent i like this and thanks

  • Pingback: Make Smarter – NC GIS Conference, jQuery Templates, Inception Scene with Blender | Fuzzy Tolerance

  • pri sat

    when’s b-mesh going to be available

  • stephen firman

    I love array modifiers! great tutorial andrew.

  • Kevin Moore

    Very informative Video Tutorial! I Started experimenting with the Array Mod. last week, as you can see on my flicker page, and your Tut gave me lots of inspiration and new ideas,, gonna check out part 2 tonight,, Thanks!

  • car313

    Dear Mr Andrew Price
    Isn’t the hall upside down? Just wondering.

  • geoff
  • geoff
  • Pingback: » Recreate the Hallway Scene from Inception – Part 2 of 2

  • marco

    This is awesome Andrew!

    Can’t wait to see the next part. Keep it up ;)

  • simon

    Great one mate, your “speed modelling” is such an efficient way to do this, as is working “by eye” . Done a lot of arch viz work in the past and I tend to obsess about being spot on with snapping etc. Takes 10 times longer to get anywhere.

    Now desperately looking forward to this week’s update about lighting and texturing (so much to learn :D )

  • Rich

    Excellent tut Andrew! One of my favorites yet.
    Heres my crack at it. Ill re-do the lights and texture per your recommendations in the second part. I just wanted to take a shot at it

  • T0m123

    I can’t get LuxBlend!! Can anyone provide me with a link? I cant find anywhere to download it for macOSX :/

    • Melon

  • daphne

    I cannot download this tut. Just 1.6kb d’loads and then it stops. ???
    I have installed IExp 9 beta. Could that be the reason?
    checked all add ons and disbaled anything not needed.
    Using speedbit d’loader which has always worked OK on this site before.
    Any help and suggestions appreciated. Tk(sorry if this X2 I forgot to check the notify box)

  • daphne

    I cannot download this tut. Just 1.6kb d’loads and then it stops. ???
    I have installed IExp 9 beta. Could that be the reason?
    checked all add ons and disbaled anything not needed.
    Using speedbit d’loader which has always worked OK on this site before.
    Any help and suggestions appreciated. Tks

  • rock

    Hi Andrew, thanks for these great tutorials. One tutorial request is for a nice tutorial on a river scene with boat and reflection and floating leaves or debris..

  • MTS_Entertainment

    Great Tut, as always!
    I would really love a tutorial about modelling cloth, as there are far too few Tuts about that. I have had some troubles lately with modelling a pair of trousers, thats quite troublesome^^

  • Heinrich

    Thanks Andrew….I feel the same way about the movie and especially this scene. Thanks mate

  • Dave Spinks

    This is great work Big A

  • Joel Godin

    My array goes up (in the Z direction) when you increase the Z number. In yours you increased the Y to make the wall section go up. Why are they different do you suspect?

  • stevan

    actually this scene was filmed in a giant revolving hallway….
    but great tutorial!

  • dasayuke


    It almost looks like the film.

    I want to learn a lighting technic.

    so I’m looking forward to the next tutorial.

  • Brennan

    Just had a laugh at “ACD”. Andrew, you’re amazing.

  • mki

    oh wow, thats awesome!

  • Jokayo

    to select an object in edit mot “L” is enough rather than hitting ctr+L, by the way if you want to know why sometimes when you want to mirror an object you get confused and you start hitting z, x ,y until you have the right one for example you know that you have to hit the X axes but it does the opposite, if you want to know I could tell you :)

    • Melon

      L only works if you’re hovering over a vertex. Ctrl+L works when you already have one or more vertex selected.

  • farbsucht

    Your tutorials are awesome! Cant get enough :)

    Here is my attempt

  • Julian M

    Isn’t that tutorial pretty much the same as the “architecture” tutorial (2 Parts, 1st Part modelling with arrays and stuff and 2nd part materials and lightning..?).

    Great stuff anyways ;)

  • Leto85

    21:34 The reason that only the cylinder got smoothed out was because smooth now actually works only on the faces that are seleced. Press A and smooth again and you will see what I mean.

  • job

    it’s great!!!! as every time. We waiting second part forward

  • john

    I performed an Export to X3D from Blender version 2.56 on this scene and then put the resulting file into a webpage so that you can navigate through it in 3D in the webpage.

    Just click on the image on the left hand of the page to see the corresponding 3D model appear in the webpage. Left click and drag your left mouse button to move around the scene in 3D. Other navigation buttons appear at the bottom of the 3D viewer, enabling different navigation modes in the 3D window. To view a different 3D model, click on the corresponding image on the left and the 3D model will load into the webpage which you can then navigate through.

  • MAFUS007

    hi love the tutorials but you woulded do any on 3ds max aswell?

  • Christopher Wright

    All those complainers about not modeling in your tutorials should be happy now. lol AWESOME TUTORIAL! :D

  • Sam Welker

    Haha andrew this I will definitely watch and likely follow, however the movie inception did not recreate it in 3D. They used a real hall way and made this HUGE rig that could simulate it all IN camera!

    I’m still sold on watching this tutorial either way, but thought you should know incase you didn’t already :)


  • Pompiak

    Hi, Andrew. When You would like to make mirror of lamp which is on the wall, (but origin point is not aligned). You can use “Mirror Object” option in mirror modifier. That will use origin of other object as a mirror mirror axis. This will save You from snapping cursor to origin and origin to cursor, and save some time, and will give a lot more posibilities in using different types of mirror.
    But surely you’re aware of this.

    Great tutorial, like all You create.

  • Raphael

    lol I think you meant OCD, obsessive-compulsive disorder at 11:05

  • john smith

    Alright Andrew, here’s my progress report. And I dare anybody to get that camera angle any closer! lol I took OCD to new levels… Any here she is.

  • Patrick Boelens

    Still watching the video, so I can’t really comment on that yet, but it’s ‘OCD’, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. =P /MidwayComment

  • oscar

    It’s amazing!!
    Still practicing…..

  • HJ Media Studios

    It’s a tutorial within a tutorial within a tutorial…

  • Doug B

    So simple and so efficient. I love these tutorials because they speed up the process so much. Great way to learn this stuff; I do them until the muscle memory kicks in.

    Can’t wait for the texturing tute. I would have thought that one would need to bevel the edges of the walls in the hallway to get a realistic result, but the rendered completed picture looks rather good. In any case, beveling would be easy to do now that the walls are arrayed so much. One thing I noticed — there are shadows under the mounted lights on the wall.

  • pocax

    another great tut!

  • pocax

    thanks andrew!