Part of a school became a film set for two days while Disney filmed scenes for their latest blockbuster.

The historic and picturesque Christ's Hospital Boarding School in Horsham was used for the filming of John Carter of Mars from Wednesday to Friday this week.

The school, which has a Hogwarts-esque feel about it, is a blend of majestic buildings, a 500-seater theatre and beautifully manicured grounds.

John Carter was a character in a series of adventure tales which made their debut almost 100 years ago.

In the illustrations which accompany the Martian series of novels by Edgar Rice Burroughs, he was portrayed as a Robin Hood-type character.

A spokeswoman for the school said: “They hired our facilities for part of the film but they wrapped up on Friday.”

Last week a lights crane and four or five trucks could be seen in the main quad of the school. Cannons on wheels were also set up in the quad.

The school is no stranger to film crews. In 2005, the television series Rock School, starring Gene Simmons, from the band KISS, was filmed there.

The actors performing in John Carter of Mars include Willem Dafoe and James Purefoy, who plays a humanoid red martian.

The film is based on the first story to feature John Carter - A Princess of Mars - which was serialised from 1912 and first published as a novel in 1917.

Carter is an American Civil War veteran who goes to sleep in a cave after being chased by Apache Indians and wakes up on Mars, which is then called Barsoom.

The planet had started off like Earth but becomes less hospitable to life due to its advanced age.

As the oceans evaporated, and the atmosphere thins, the planet devolves into partial barbarism with the inhabitants hardened and warlike, fighting one another to survive.