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The British Film Commission promotes the UK as the best place to produce feature films • Guidance on British qualification and the UK’s Film Tax Relief • Highly knowledgeable and skilled teams based in the UK and US • Free bespoke production support • Extensive network of industry partners offering expertise • Assistance with sourcing crew, facilities and locations • Access to the UK’s state-of-the-art studios, post production, VFX and music facilites

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VOLUME 1 2012




Boutique Editions












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n behalf of the British Film Commission (BFC), welcome to Location UK, a new magazine that showcases the UK as one of the most dynamic and thriving destinations for film and television production in the world. In the last year we have successfully hosted many large-scale productions from Warner Bros., Walt Disney, Twentieth Century Fox, Universal, Paramount and Sony. It's a roll call that demonstrates our ability to successfully support a significant number of ambitious, high-profile feature films at the same time. Films such as Rush (Ron Howard), Prometheus (Ridley Scott), Skyfall (Sam Mendes), World War Z (Marc Forster), Snow White And the Huntsman (Rupert Sanders) and The Dark Knight Rises (Christopher Nolan) have recently benefitted from our first-class production infrastructure; from our world-class filmmaking talent, some of the best practitioners of their craft in the world; and of course from the UK’s generous Film Tax Relief. International feature films shooting in the UK also tend to use us as a jumping off point to shoot in other parts of Europe. To make sure that we continue that very positive trend we are working closely with our colleagues and counterparts across the EU. Alongside our industry partners, the BFC is the engine room that develops and maintains the UK’s success in this important field. As the national body responsible for encouraging and supporting international production into the country, the BFC promotes the warm welcome given by our film and TV production industries. We work hard to ensure that production friendly policies and practices are carefully maintained within both government and industry.








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British Film Commission 11766 Wilshire Blvd, Suite #1200 Los Angeles, CA 90025 USA T: +1 310 652 6156 F: +1 310 652 6232 E: Location UK is the official publication of the British Film Commission. Additional copies are available on request from BFC, British Film Commission Suite 6.10 The Tea Building 56 Shoreditch High Street London E1 6JJ United Kingdom

As I’ve always said, the BFC retains its enviable reputation by ensuring that Britain expects to provide for the movie, not just the other way around. In terms of production, I am proud to say that the UK's reputation has always been perceived to be synonymous with quality. Our industry is seen internationally as being entirely reliable. We keep our promises. The hard-won reputation we have for such excellence arises primarily from the depth and quality of our education and training; from the maintenance of our professional standards; from the genius of our people; and from the efficiency of the technical facilities available to them. I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues at the BFC and across our industry to ensure that the UK’s reputation, as a safe and friendly production centre, is continually developed, and constantly improved. IAIN SMITH, Chair of the British Film Commission


Sales Director LISA RAY


Marketing Executive Location UK is published for the BFC by Boutique Editions Ltd The publisher assumes no liability for unsolicited manuscripts, photographs and artwork Copyright ©2012 by the British Film Commission. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part of any text, photograph or illustration without prior permission of the BFC is strictly prohibited

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“I am delighted that Dancing On Ice is returning to Elstree Studios. The flexibility of your staff and facilities perfectly suit the ever changing needs of a show such as ours and without doubt Stage 2 is the best place in the country for the huge scale of our ice world! We are excited to be coming home, and are looking forward to working with you to make Dancing On Ice 2012 the best it has ever been.” Glenn Coomber, Executive Producer Dancing on Ice

“Elstree is a great place to set up a production. The management are accessible, understanding and helpful in dealing with the problems that will arise during the course of a production. Even the backroom staff make themselves visible so you know who to contact when the smallest things go wrong. A good atmosphere to work in.” Peter Heslop, Co-Producer The King’s Speech

“Elstree Studios is a great location for Big Brother. We have a complex technical operation set up within our new Big Brother Village. The Big Brother house is monitored 24 hours a day, and we have more than 2 live transmissions from the studio every day – 7 days per week. We have very large audiences for Big Brother and it's easy for them to get to by public transport. This is also an ideal location for all production and technical staff.” Sandra Smith, Head of Production Big Brother

“Having based Sherlock Holmes II at Elstree and spent the best part of a year successfully utilising most areas of the Studio, I will certainly look forward to returning. The whole experience has been very favourable and to be working with a studio administration who are always so approachable, positive and willing to help overcome the unforeseen problems that inevitably arise, has been a great bonus.” Mark Mostyn, UPM Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

“We were thrilled to have the opportunity to return to Elstree Film Studios and to once again work with Britain's great technicians. In truth, for us all stages are pretty much the same. What distinguishes one studio from another is the people who run it. At Elstree the Studios provided us with the most efficient, organised and dedicated team, who were always able to adapt and respond immediately to our complex and technically challenging production requirements.” Rick McCallum, Producer Star Wars

Elstree Studios, Shenley Road, Borehamwood, Hertfordshire WD6 1JG tel: 020 8953 1600 . fax: 020 8905 1135 . Film Link – the location service for the East of England Images: Dancing on Ice © ITV Studios | The King’s Speech © Momentum Pictures, an Alliance Films company | Big Brother © Channel 5 | Star Wars © Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM


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The UK boasts some of the world’s most exciting locations and studios. And internationally the UK film industry is also revered for its outstanding craftsmen and technicians 18


With good infrastructure and a variety of locations within short distances, UK film studios are proving a popular destination for production companies 44


The average feature film can produce some 2,000 tonnes of carbon emmissions. Which is why countries around the world are now starting to take this issue seriously, not least the UK 56




How do branded products and services end up in movies? What are the benefits of product placement, how much does it cost and who controls what ultimately ends up on the screen?




Universal’s Snow White And The Huntsman takes the Grimm Brothers’ fairytale back to its dark roots, with a revisionist take — shot on location around the UK 40


For his first truly British film, Steven Spielberg chose Dartmoor in Devon, South West England, as the star location for War Horse 48


Frankenweenie is a story close to Tim Burton’s heart. Disney’s full-length, stop-motion remake of his 1984 short tells the story of a boy who re-animates his dead dog 52



The world portrayed in the television adaptation of George RR Martin’s Game Of Thrones is as rich and varied as that of JRR Tolkien’s Lord Of The Rings

25 & 64 UK IN PICTURES Location UK magazine brings you images of stunning locations around the UK



The 23rd James Bond, Skyfall, arrives at the end of 2012. And many of the exotic locations seen in this and past Bond movies have been shot in the UK 16



The Dark Knight Rises concludes British filmmaker Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy. To create the dark streets of Gotham City Nolan chose a mix of Pittsburgh, London and Glasgow 60



Parade’s End is playwright Sir Tom Stoppard’s fivepart adaptation of the acclaimed First World War set of four novels by Ford Madox Ford, produced by Stoppard’s Shakespeare In Love collaborator David Parfitt. The Oscar-winning team spoke to Location UK

One of London’s most filmed locations, Somerset House is a spectacular neo-classical building in the centre of London on the north bank of the River Thames. Its origins date back to the 16th century, since when it has seen many uses including as a base for the Royal Academy, The Royal Society and London University. Today it is a cultural centre and is used extensively for productions including The Duchess (2008), Sherlock Holmes (2009) and Nanny McPhee And The Big Bang (2010). The building offers elegant rooms, sweeping staircases, atmospheric lightwells, terraces, and a spectacular courtyard — all right in the centre of London. (Photo, courtesy Peter Durant/



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THE 23RD JAMES BOND, SKYFALL, ARRIVES AT THE END OF 2012. AND MANY OF THE EXOTIC LOCATIONS SEEN IN THIS AND PAST BOND MOVIES HAVE BEEN SHOT IN THE UK... PRETTY-well every Bond movie has shot in and around Pinewood Studios, just outside London — home of the 007 Stage, built in 1976 for The Spy Who Loved Me. And Daniel Craig’s third Bond, Skyfall, is no exception. Which means the temptation has always been to find British locations that might double for the rest of the world. In From Russia With Love (1963), the final boat chase was on Loch Craignish and the helicopter chase in Lochgoilhead, Argyll & Bute, Scotland. For Goldfinger (1964), Fort Knox was recreated in Black Park Country Park, and RAF Northolt was a Kentucky airfield for Pussy Galore’s Flying Circus. In Thunderball (1965) Silverstone Racetrack, Northamptonshire, hosted a car chase. Blofeld’s volcano lair in You Only Live Twice (1967) was on the backlot at Pinewood; and plane crashes were filmed at Finmere Aerodrome in Oxfordshire. Kent’s Chatham Historic Dockyard and Dover Ferry Terminal starred in Diamonds Are Forever (1971). Faslane Naval Base and Gare Loch in Scotland, featured in The Spy Who Loved Me (1977). In Octopussy (1983) RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk and RAF Northolt were used for German airbases; and the Russian art repository was filmed in the National Maritime Museum in London. Ascot Racecourse was used in A View To A Kill (1985), and a Rolls Royce gets pushed into a lake at a quarry in Berkshire. London doubled for Russia in GoldenEye (1995), with a St Petersburg church shot in Brompton Cemetery, and a St Petersburg square in Somerset House courtyard. In Tomorrow Never Dies (1997), Bond’s Hamburg hotel was Stoke Park House, Stoke Poges, and London’s Brent Cross Shopping Centre was the hotel car park. For The World Is Not Enough (1999), RAF Northolt was a runway in Azerbaijan. For Die Another Day(2002) an Iceland diamond mine was re-created in Cornwall; RAF Odiham in Hampshire doubled for a Korean Demilitarized Zone Bridge; Norfolk was used for paddy fields; and a Cuban cigar factory was re-created in Stoke Newington, London. For Casino Royale (2006), Dunsfield Park Aerodrome in Surrey became Miami airport; and Pinewood reproduced a Venetian piazza, a Ugandan rebel camp and a sinking Venetian house. Quantum Of Solace (2008) featured London’s Barbican centre; and Farnborough Airfield in Hampshire became Bregenz airport in Austria. For Skyfall, Shanghai and London are key city locations, and the film visits Scotland and parts of Turkey too. The film’s supervising location manager James Grant said: “London is a key character in Skyfall in Bond’s 50th year. While the capital has many iconic locations, they all require thorough preparation.  For this reason the work started back in the summer of 2011 to finalise locations that  involved multi-agency co-operation.” He adds: “ Film London were instrumental in supporting and assisting with this process and I am very grateful for all their help and guidance”. DEBBIE LINCOLN

Daniel Craig as James Bond brandishes a gun on the streets of London in Skyfall


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Shooting Charlize Theron as Queen Ravenna inside the medieval fairytale castle constructed at Pinewood Studios for Snow White And The Huntsman





MAGIC The UK boasts some of the world’s most exciting locations and studios. And internationally the UK film industry is also revered for its outstanding craftsmen and technicians HIS year Martin Scorsese triumphed at the Oscars with Hugo, his tale of a movie-mad orphan. It is fitting that this extraordinary film about the magic of cinema and the machinery of creativity chose to shoot in the UK — where some of the world’s most accomplished craftsmen and technicians can be found. Sets for Hugo were built at Pinewood, Shepperton and Longcross studios; the Shepperton set included a life-size Parisian train; the Longcross set included a fully-working railway track. The impressive sets, stunning in their detail and craftsmanship, stole the show. The art director was Italian; most of the crew members were British. In the last year alone, a medieval fairytale castle was constructed at Pinewood Studios for Snow White And The Huntsman while Tim Burton built a gothic manor at Bourne Wood. London was transformed into Gotham City, once again, for Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises. Ridley Scott’s Aliens are back and so too is James Bond. The country is buzzing with the world’s finest craftsmen whipping up entire villages just to burn them down. We’ve been making monsters, performing hair-raising stunts and car chases. Besieged by vampires, zombies and Samurai… it’s been a busy year. “The team makes a film special,” says art director Dave Allday. “If it happens that we manage to achieve something along the way that people want to go out and see, then that’s the icing on the cake.” At the start of 2012 Allday completed Keanu Reeves’ Samurai revenge drama 47 Ronin, which features real locations mixed with colourful sets and elaborately choreographed fight sequences, all in 3D. 47 Ronin boasts cinematography by John Mathieson (Gladiator, Kingdom Of Heaven) and used the same 3D Arri Alexa camera system used on Scorsese’s Hugo. In the Summer of 2012 Allday starts work on Disney’s


Maleficent (2014), a reworking of the classic Sleeping Beauty told from the perspective of the princess’s’ evil nemesis Maleficent. Angelina Jolie stars. Jacqueline Durran created the iconic emerald green dress for Keira Knightly in Atonement (2007), and more recently the costumes for the equally chic Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011). For the 2012 movie Anna Karenina, Durran has created a hybrid look for Joe Wright’s epic Russian romance. The stylish new adaptation features sweeping embroidered coats, fox furs and Chanel gems — 1870s fashion meets fitted fifties couture. “London is such an international hub,” Durran says. “You make connections with a whole range of people in London that come from different countries and have different skills … Compared to LA you have a greater range of fabrics. We have a lot of fabrics from India for example because we have such a large Indian community.” “We have a wonderful history of filmmaking here too,” Allday adds. “The influx of new talent in so many areas of the industry has been exciting and the development of digital media and our embracement of it has been pivotal.” Keeping at the cutting edge of a fast-moving industry is at the forefront of filmmaking in the UK. “We are trailblazing techniques that are used throughout the field,” says Matt Johnson of Soho-based visual effects company Cinesite. “In VFX you have to keep creating new and improved ways of doing this, trying to keep pace with the growing expectations of the audience. Most of the major UK VFX companies have in-house software developers con-

“SOME OF THE GREATEST DIRECTORS OF THE MODERN AGE SUCH AS STEVEN SPIELBERG AND TIM BURTON HAVE FALLEN IN LOVE WITH THE UK” PHIL STILGOE stantly refining tools to create better work. I always think of the visual effects industry as being like a shark: the minute you stop moving forward, you will die.” Phil Stilgoe from motion capture facility Centroid — with offices at Pinewood Studios and Belgrade, Serbia — has recently completed work on Ridley Scott’s Alien spin-off Prometheus (2012). “It is not surprising that some of the greatest directors of the modern age such as Steven Spielberg and Tim Burton have fallen in love with the UK and shoot here on a regular basis,” Stilgoe says. “Centroid has gained a reputation with high-end VFX supervisors and producers for delivering quality data within tight deadlines and developing competitive technology. I firmly believe that the only drawback UK filmmakers have is their own modesty, but fortunately the cinematic results are speaking for themselves.” The eagerly anticipated comeback from Scott will revisit the iconic series acclaimed for its HR Giger creature designs and horrifying prosthetics. With work from creature animatronics guru Neal Scanlan and costumes from Janty Yates (Gladiator, American Gangster), the chest-bursting, face-hugging terror of Scott’s Aliens returns q


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q to our screens this summer. Scott utilised stages at Pinewood Studios to build the epic sets which included the eponymous Prometheus — a stunning new interstellar craft. Pushing the boundaries of modern filmmaking, while retaining the unique techniques and skills appropriated over years in the business remains at the core of the UK’s success in the industry. Oscar winning special effects supervisor Neil Corbould has worked with some of the biggest names in the business from David Lynch to Steven Spielberg. He started out his career on a number of seminal films including David Lynch’s The Elephant

chant for technical innovation. “I think the major film producers in the world recognise that our unbroken tradition of making movies has built a DNA of skills which has been handed down from generation to generation.” Dowdall has just finished work as a precision driver on Skyfall (2012), the latest in the Bond franchise which demonstrates well the British tradition for excellence, particularly in the field of stunt work. Stunt co-ordinator Ray De-Haan has just completed another high-octane action thriller, Eran Creevy’s Welcome To The Punch (2012). “There were explosions and shoot-outs,” DeHaan says. “There was a fantastic car chase all through Canary Wharf where we had four of the best motorcycle stuntmen in England,” Creevy says. In 2008 Creevy made his BAFTA-nominated debut feature for Film London’s Microwave scheme. His latest slick London-set thriller has backing from Ridley Scott. “You wouldn’t know it was one of his first features” says DeHaan. “He was so cool and not nervous, he knew what he wanted.” “We have a good training culture” says Corbould. Dynamic schemes like those run by the Skillset Craft and Technical Skills


The stylish new adaptation of Anna Karenina features sweeping embroidered coats, fox furs and Chanel gems — 1870s fashion meets fitted fifties couture

Man (1980) and John Landis’ An American Werewolf In London (1981). Most recently Corbould has been working with director Marc Forster on Brad Pitt’s zombie thriller World War Z (2013), with the UK doubling for Philadelphia. “The UK has some of the best filmmakers and craftsmen in the world, because we have a long history in the film business. We have also carried on the craftsmanship from the construction business into the film world over many, many years,” Corbould says. Using an animatronic, life-sized horse and five puppeteers buried in the ground Corbould created breathtaking special effects for Spielberg’s War Horse. “We are probably stronger than we have ever been. There are some great directors out there that love practical effects, such as Mr. Spielberg and Mr. Nolan and it is great to show them what we can do.” Stunt co-ordinator Jim Dowdall talks about the British pen-

Academy have an enormous impact on the success of the Film Industry.” According to Academy director Alison Small, “If the UK is to maintain its reputation for world class film and TV production, then we must continue to invest in the skills of the craft and technical crews.” This groundbreaking strategic alliance between the film industry and education has been established through funding received from industry contributions to the Skills Investment Fund (SIF). “The Academy gives the very best talent across the UK access to the highest quality of training and a way into the industry,” Small says. “This will ensure the ongoing development of much-needed skills, making sure we can continue to meet the needs of both future domestic and international production.” While filmmakers can easily access an array of phenomenal locations in the UK — from cityscapes to wilderness, historic houses to beaches — they can also tap into the outstanding talent pool. With a long standing reputation for technical innovation and excellence in craft, the gifted craftspeople and skilled artists found in the UK are the British Film Industry’s greatest asset. British Film Commission chair, and producer, Iain Smith says: “In 2011, feature film production in the UK spent more than £1bn ($1.6bn). A record breaking figure, the majority of which came from international feature films. This, in turn, critically enables us to reinvest in our facilities, as well as in the key skills and talents of our people.” ALISON WILLIAMS

BRINGING WORLD CLASS SKILLS TO THE UK FILM INDUSTRY Supporting UK film production by providing talented UK film trainees at highly subsidised rates. To find out more about our Trainee Placement Scheme and the Skills Investment Fund visit |

Follow us on: @craftandtech


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Harry Potter with Buckbeak the hyppogryph in Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban

While the story of Harry Potter touched every corner of the world, another story was unfolding; the story of how Harry Potter’s world was brought to life. The crew and craftsmen who built the iconic sets from the Great Hall to the Ministry of Magic, the people who sewed the costumes, made the monsters and brought the magic to life… N THE summer of 1990 on a train from Manchester to London Kings Cross, JK Rowling dreamed up the story of Harry Potter. Her imagination spawned seven books and eight films which inspired and thrilled fans all over the world. Warner Bros. has now opened a unique new tour devoted to the Harry Potter series of films: Warner Bros. Studio Tour London — The Making Of Harry Potter, which looks at the making of the films from start to finish, and is just a 20-minute train ride from London’s Euston Station. “We had the privilege of working with the best filmmakers and crews in the world,” Daniel Radcliffe, who played Harry Potter, says. “We were just front men.” The magic goes far beyond what you see on the screen and at Leavesden Studios in Watford, where the films were made, Potter fans can now go behind the scenes and see the detail and craftsmanship that went into what has become the most successful franchise in cinema history. “People are completely blown away by the quality and attention to detail,” Dan Dark, managing director, Leavesden Studios, says. During the eight films the crew constructed 588 sets. “Everybody is struck by how ambitious an achievement it has been, the scale and the detail,” adds Warner Bros. UK chief Josh Berger. “We used the same construction people, the same painters, everybody that built it there [pointing to the studio] for the movie, built it there [pointing to the tour] for the tour,” Roy Button, executive vice-president and managing director of Warner Bros. Productions, says. “It’s unique. All that out there, the props, the sets, none of it has been made to specifically go in there. It’s all original stuff, on the original site, put up by the original people.” What the tour does, besides offer an insight into how a movie is made, is showcase the talents of the UK industry. It is as a testament to the craftsmen and crew in the UK that Warner has opened the Studio Tour and bought into Leavesden Studios. “Not only is it a Potter exhibition, it’s an exhibition about filmmaking. It’s an exhibition of the crafts in filmmaking,” Button says. “If you wanted to show someone the entire filmmaking process — whether they like Harry Potter or not — this is the place to come.” The exhibition also provides inspiration for a new gen-


eration of filmmakers. “We have a tradition in the UK film industry of providing a quality of product,” Dark adds. “There is a really strong work ethic. What I’ve learned from the tour is how proud the guys are in what they are creating.” David Yates helmed four of the eight Potter films, including the conclusion of the series. In 2002, before starting out on this adventure, he made a short film called Rank produced by the London Production Fund Short, now part of Film London. The film, which cast a group of young unknown actors, explored the themes of friendship and adolescence and was a precursor for what was to come. “I had a great time making Rank,” Yates says. “Everyone thought I was a bit mad [to want to be a director]. I started when I was 14-years-old with a little super-8mm camera that my Mum bought me. It was around that time I saw Jaws in the cinema and that completely inspired me.” Rank received a BAFTA nomination, and a few years later Yates was working with some of the biggest — and youngest — movie stars in the world. Among others working on the Harry Potter films was Magic Camera Company’s José Granell, one of the UK’s leading special effects experts. In 1984 Granell joined a team working alongside another special effects aficionado, Derek Meddings, after being blown away by his work on the original Superman (1978), starring Christopher Reeve. Their special effects work using miniature models on the film was groundbreaking. “We built a complete fairground on 12 scale! With all the bumper cars and the big Ferris wheel — a big learning curve for me.” Granell has worked with some of the biggest names in the business, from Tim Burton to the Wachowski Brothers — making the iconic Batmobile for Tim Burton’s Batman in 1989, and blowing up the Houses of Parliament for James McTeigue’s V For Vendetta (2005). Granell specialises in building fully functioning models, and created the jewel in the crown of the Harry Potter Tour, the Hogwarts Castle scale model. The work was so detailed, that if the man-hours that went into building and reworking the model were added up it would come to over 74 years. The doors are hinged, real plants were used for landscaping and miniature birds are housed in the owlery. The model stands at nearly 50 feet in diameter. It has over 2,500 fibre-optic lights that simulate lanterns and torches and give the illusion of students passing through the hallways. A day-to-night cycle takes place every four minutes so visitors can experience the changing atmosphere. “It would have been a shame to have just seen that skipped and thrown away,” Granell says. “People produce some amazing things that the public find fascinating. It gives another lease of life to this stuff.” Yates and Granell are just two of the filmmakers showcased in the Harry Potter tour. Hundreds of the UK’s finest craftsmen and artists are profiled in the exhibition which features original artwork, costumes and sets, and portrays the extraordinary detail that goes into making the world’s most successful movie franchise. ALISON WILLIAMS


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ho’s the W B fair st






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AS FAIRYTALE locations go, the UK has it all, from period chapels to dark forests, from enchanted coasts to epic highlands. In Rupert Sanders’ Snow White And The Huntsman, the Queen has thwarted death. Forests have turned black and nature is turning in on itself — the world is in disarray. Universal’s epic new production found everything it needed in the UK. While scouting, location manager Bill Darby took his director to Frensham Common in Surrey, southwest of London, and nearby Frensham Little Pond. “The year before, the Common had suffered a very bad heath fire. But Rupert so liked the burnt look, it got written into the script,” Darby says. In the film, Queen Ravenna, played by Charlize Theron, has drained both the lifeblood of the land and of all the young women in it, to satiate her need to stay young. “The desolate and burnt look of Frensham Common informed the creative process of the film in the early stages,” Darby says. “When we first looked at it in February, it was barren and nothing was growing. Rupert wanted to use it for a battle scene, so we opened negotiations with Waverley Council, which manages the Common, and also with Natural England, which monitors commercial activity on Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs). We were scheduled to shoot in August, but in June it poured with rain

of the film,” says Harvey Edgington, National Trust broadcast and media manager, who in close co-operation with Natural England and the Local Authority helped the production secure planning permission for the protected site which is now a sanctuary for wildlife. All the money made through filming at National Trust properties goes back into maintaining and caring for the property or site. “It’s a superb location. It has a quality quite unique for the home counties [semi-rural counties close to London],” Darby says. Originally created in the 11th century, the pond was used to supply fish to the Bishop of Winchester and his court. There are a number of common and rare birds in the area, damselflies and dragonflies dart over the glistening water in the warmer months, and the banks of the pond are fringed with a multitude of yellow iris, purple loosestrife and common reeds. The heath is a colourful mosaic of purple heathers, fragrant bright yellow gorse and rich green bracken. Ancient gnarled oaks and pines are scattered across the site. Other locations included Marloes Sands in Pembrokeshire, one of Wales’ unspoilt sandy beaches. Administered by the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, the loca-

and suddenly the heath came back to life, and everyone started to worry about the erosion 150 charging horses might cause. So at the penultimate hour we had to switch the location to nearby Bourne Wood. Subsequently almost everywhere we went where we had to recreate bits of the barren world, we had to burn or blacken either digitally, or physically, by using black peat and dyed artificial snow.” The National Trust is the UK’s largest landowner and can supply many of the country’s most stunning locations. Fren“THE ACCESS PATH HAD BEEN WASHED sham Little Pond, one AWAY, SO WE BUILT A 150-FOOT RAMP IN of the Trust’s properORDER TO GET 150 HORSES AND ALL THE ties, was chosen as the EQUIPMENT DOWN THERE” BILL DARBY location to build the film’s Fenland Village set, which took seven weeks to install for tion was last used in the 1968 historical a two-week shoot. Temporary planning epic The Lion In Winter, and the dramatic permission was required for this exten- rock formations and coastline provided sive set, which consisted of some eight the spectacular backdrop for the producbuildings, with interconnecting jetties tion’s final battle sequence. With careand walkways, some of which were on ful scheduling and planning, Darby and the foreshore and some of which were ex- the crew were able to get all the horses tended into the lake itself. “The Local and vehicles, as well as all the cast and Planning Authority has a policy to encour- crew onto the beach for low tide, retreatage filming in the area, which was useful ing again at high tide when the entire as it got us off to a reasonably good start,” beach became engulfed in water. “The Darby says. “The story required us to set beach was a bit of a number,” Darby says. fire to the village when it is attacked by “The end of the access path had been the Queen’s men, so everything had to be washed away, so we built a 150-foot ramp very carefully planned.” in order to get 150 horses and all the “No newts were singed in the making equipment down there.” A castle was q


13 Charlize Theron as Queen Ravenna in Snow White And The Huntsman



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Preparing for a shoot in Burnham Wood: Chris Hemsworth (left) as The Huntsman, Kristen Stewart (centre) as Snow White, and at the camera, director Rupert Sanders



q digitally superimposed onto Gateholm Island, at the western end of the Marloes Peninuslar, while the National Trust provided camera positions along the cliffs. Elsewhere, the fairytale forest locations were provided by Bears Rails in Windsor Great Park, Black Park and Langley Park, all near Pinewood Studios, as well as Bourne Wood in Surrey. The Dark Forest set was built in Black Park, creating a forest within a forest, including animatronic trees, bogs and ponds. Managed by Buckinghamshire County Council and covering 530 acres (214 ha), these woods featured prominently in the Hammer Horror films from the late 1950s to the 1970s. A similar Sanctuary set, a vast tree sited on an island in the middle of a lake, was created at Langley Park, with its acres of open grassland and woodland pasture. Over the centuries King Henry VIII, Queen Elizabeth I, Queen Victoria, and the 3rd and 4th Dukes of Marlborough have all been linked to the Park. In Windsor — close to Heathrow Airport — Bears Rails stood in for the Enchanted Forest. Bears Rails is an impressive unspoilt woodland that boasts ancient oaks up to 1,000 years old, with one particularly magnificent specimen known as the Elephant Oak. The Forestry Commission provided further locations. The commission has locations where there are no pylons, phone masts or traffic noise — 360º uninterrupted views all within commuting distance of major studios, and close to London. Other forest locations included Burnham Beeches in South Buckinghamshire, just northwest of London, and neighbouring Kiln Wood.

“It’s the classic story with a contemporary twist,� Darby says. “Snow White escapes from the castle across the wasted countryside and she enters the Dark Forest with the Huntsman pursuing her. They then escape into a cave system


which we shot in the Lake District [in Cumbria, in the north of England].� Cathedral Quarry is a network of interlinked blue slate quarries above Little Langdale near Ambleside in Cumbria. One of the most stunning locations in the film, the system is best known for its spectacular main chamber, which still stands 40 feet in height, and is lit by two holes












off the main quarry where the sunlight pours in. “That’s quite a special place. It had a very eerie feel about it and would have been too costly to build on a stage — everything is dripping moisture and the cavern floor is flooded.� Through Cumbria’s Film Friendly Partnership, Creative England was able to engage with key personnel and agencies to ensure the shoot ran smoothly. Throughout the UK similar film-friendly partnerships facilitate large and sometimes complex shoots. “Engaging with local authorities is vital to instilling a filmfriendly ethos in every region of England,� Creative England’s Bobby Cochrane says. “Meeting regularly allows Creative England to discuss the benefits of filming and means that when large-scale feature films like Snow White And The Huntsman come to film in the region, they are provided with a service that is responsive, reliable and positive.� ALISON WILLIAMS

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THE DARK KNIGHT RISES CONCLUDES BRITISH FILMMAKER CHRISTOPHER NOLAN’S BATMAN TRILOGY. TO CREATE THE DARK STREETS OF GOTHAM CITY NOLAN CHOSE A MIX OF PITTSBURGH, LONDON AND GLASGOW A HUNDRED men dressed for the cold, stage a fight in scorching Summer temperatures, on the campus of Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Mellon University under a fake snowfall; the latest Batman movie The Dark Knight Rises is shooting Summer for Winter and Pittsburgh for Gotham. This is how far director Christopher Nolan is prepared to take cast and crew to get an authentic DC Comics look for his third and last Batman movie. But Pittsburgh was just one of the doubles for Gotham — London, the London suburb Croydon, and the Scottish city of Glasgow were in the mix too as Nolan took pains to create a city that nobody would recognise. Such are the efforts made to keep the Warner Bros. Pictures’ and Legendary Pictures’ production on the right side of fantasy. Carnegie Mellon doubles for Gotham City Hall; Croydon landmark the Delta Point office building is demolished, CGI-style for one Gotham action sequence; and the Farmiloe Building in St John Street, London, once again plays the role of the exterior of Gotham City Police Station. With Wayne Manor having been destroyed in part two of Nolan’s trilogy, he had some flexibility with that location this time around. He chose Wollaton Hall & Deer Park in Nottinghamshire, two hours north of London, for the exterior shots of Bruce Wayne’s ancestral home — replacing Mentmore Towers in the home county of Buckinghamshire, that was used in the second movie of the trilogy, The Dark Knight. A range of Gotham exteriors were shot in Glasgow, a city with quite a Hollywood history. Its City Chambers doubled as the Kremlin in John Schlesinger’s An Englishman Abroad (1983) and the Vatican in Charles Gormley’s Heavenly Pursuits (1987). The House Of Mirth by Terence Davies (2000) used Glasgow’s Kelvingrove Art Gallery as New York's Grand Central Terminal. The city doubled for Philadelphia for the Brad Pitt zombie movie World War Z (2013) directed by Marc Forster; and for San Francisco in Tom Tykwer and Andy and Lana Wachowski’s Cloud Atlas (2012). While in the UK, the production team benefitted from liaison between the British Film Commission (BFC) and government agencies, to facilitate one of the film’s key set pieces, according to BFC chief executive Adrian Wootton. “Welcoming back Christopher Nolan for his third and final Batman film, we wanted to make sure the UK could deliver on every level for one of the year’s most anticipated films,” Wootton says. JULIAN NEWBY


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Christian Bale in The Dark Knight Rises. Š 2012 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. And Legendary Pictures Funding, Llc


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Johnny Depp as Barnabas Collins in Tim Burton’s Dark Shadows, shot entirely in England at Pinewood Studios and on location





With an effective system of tax relief, good infrastructure and a variety of locations within short distances, UK film studios are proving a popular destination for production companies. But arguably it’s the state-of-the-art facilities, and access to some of the world’s most experienced crews that make the difference

3 MILLS STUDIOS UST seven miles east of Central London in Bow, is the atmospheric 3 Mills Studios, set on a 20-acre historical site. “It’s the only large studio in the East End of London and we are largely on an island so it presents a very romantic image,” studio executive Derek Watts says. “You arrive in what you think is an industrialised area and suddenly you are looking at 19th century buildings with oast houses and cobbled streets and you’re almost passing into another world. It’s a unique historic location.” There are 14 stages and a total of 108,000 square feet of filming space but with the largest stage being 13,500 square feet 3 Mills tends to concentrate on the independent sector, attracting such directors as Danny Boyle, David Cronenberg and Tim Burton. 3 Mills has recently hosted Steven Knight’s Jason Statham vehicle Hummingbird (2013). The facilities include rehearsal rooms, production offices, makeup and dressing rooms, construction workshops and a screening room. The site also boasts a prison exterior and cell set and period buildings dating from the 1700s. Watts says the picturesque location is often taken advantage of. “Recently we had Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows (2011) filming on the bridge and in the river next to us, and that sort of thing goes on regularly.” Part of the site is used to double for a New York alleyway. “People, think with a bit of dressing, and with an external fire escape, it’s much cheaper than going to New York.”


BLACK HANGAR STUDIOS FFICIALLY opened on May 1, 2012, Black Hangar Studios is situated on the Lasham Airfield in Alton, Hampshire — just off the M3 motorway, a 90-minute drive south west out of Central London. With aircraft and helicopter landing facilities, its accessibility by air and its potential for filming aviation-themed scenes are likely to become a big draw to the facility. Black Hangar’s head of art and production services, Simon Lamont, has been supervising art director on a number of blockbusters in recent years — including Casino Royale (2006), and it was that movie that sparked the development of Black Hangar as a permanent studio facility. “This is a hangar that I knew of from when we did Casino



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Royale, because we shot the petrol bowser chase on these airfields,” Lamont says. “The scene they shot here, with the petrol bowser going through the belly of a 727 plane, Martin Campbell decided to leave on the cutting room floor. But that’s how I knew of Lasham Airfield. We also have a good relationship with the airfield through Oliver Tobias (actor-director who directed the 2006 film An Airfield In England: Lasham 1942-2006).” As well as a 32,000 sq ft uninterrupted stage, the site offers a great deal of backlot and includes an outdoor water tank. “We can shoot car scenes on closed roads without actually having to close any roads,” says CEO Carole Siller. “There is a lot on the perimeter of the airfield that we can offer.” Today the airfield is home to a gliding club, and also receives planes for maintenance as well as scheduled freight flights — and can accommodate the landing and take-off of planes up to

the size of a Boeing 757. John Travolta should take note: “If you have certain VIP clients that want to fly in and fly out, they can do that,” Siller says. At press time — and pre-launch — Black Hangar had already hosted shoots for Lasse Hallström’s Salmon Fishing In The Yemen, as well as a commercial for BMW.

THE BOTTLE YARD HE BOTTLE Yard in Bristol is a slightly different proposition. The site operated for more than 50 years as a winery and bottling plant and has now become the largest production facility in the South West, with 300,000 square feet of available space. Instead of a large cash injection and a sudden transformation, the development of q


tiative supported by South West Regional Development Agency and Bristol City Council and is managed and promoted by Creative England. “Any money that is earned from the site goes straight back into the site,” Creative England’s Fiona Francombe says. “If production companies come in and need to make some amendments, whether it’s painting floors, putting in an element of sound proofing or putting up rigs, its under negotiation with their fee. We promote the space and anything that’s going to be a long-lasting legacy for the site, we would then negotiate with them and it comes off their fee. It’s an organic process.” The Bottle Yard has attracted a wide range of productions from the BBC, ITV, Sky, Channel 4 and recently its first independent feature film — Jonathan Newman’s Mariah Mundi And The Midas Box, set for a 2013 release. The empty warehouse has been brought back to life, offering a variety of adaptable internal build spaces, workshop areas, production offices, private roadways, parking, storage and locations.

EALING STUDIOS ALING Studios has been a base for filmmaking since 1902 and is thought to be the world’s oldest continuously working studio for film production. Famed for its 1930s and 1940s Ealing comedies, it now offers four stages ranging from 970 square feet to 11,600 square feet and facilities including workshops, offices, props stores and meeting rooms. It’s also the only British film studio to produce and distribute feature films, and over the past 15 years has been behind five of the top 20 highest grossing independent British films in the UK, including the St Trinian’s franchise. Ealing has accommodated numerous famous film productions including Stars Wars: Episode II – Attack of The Clones (2002) and Notting Hill (1999). More recently the studio has


hosted Michael Hoffman’s Gambit remake (2013) and the hit ITV drama Downton Abbey. Colin Firth is returning to the studios with Hugh Grant for Peter Cattaneo’s Bridget Jones sequel.

LSTREE is one of the great names in British film history and it’s famous past has drawn many to the facility. “The heritage is really important. I’m told Peter Jackson came over as a young man and wanted to visit Elstree, it was so high on his radar,” managing director Roger Morris says. “When they come to Elstree it’s almost stepping on hallowed ground. We had Crispin Mills walk down the corridor and there was a picture of his grandfather John Mills on the wall in Ice Cold In Alex (1958).” There are six sound stages and one silent stage totalling more than 60,000 square feet of space, plus full supporting facilities. The 49-foot high George Lucas Stage is one of the tallest in Europe, recently hosting Tom Hooper’s oscar-winner The King’s Speech (2010), Marc Forster’s World War Z (2013) and Bryan Singer’s Jack The Giant Killer (2013). Morris says: “obviously we are small, but sometimes small is beautiful as far as filmmakers are concerned. They’re not sharing the space with lots of other major films. We’re like a boutique five-star hotel.”


FILM CITY GLASGOW ENTURING further north there’s Film City Glasgow (FCG), part of the city’s burgeoning media presence. It offers 12,000 sq ft of production office space, a 5,000-sq-ft build space, workshop areas, rehearsal and meeting rooms, a cafe, and 10,000 sq ft of creative business offices. q


Leavesden WaRneR Bros. Studios Leavesden’s (WBSL) scheduled £100m ($162m) opening is the Summer of 2012 and the site boasts one of the largest film facilities in the UK. Some 18 miles northwest of Central London on the site of a former Rolls Royce factory at Leavesden Aerodrome, the original studios were home to the Harry Potter franchise and were acquired by Warner Bros. in Autumn 2010. Dan Dark, senior vice-president and managing director at WBSL says the complex has been totally



Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden

refurbished. “The old facility has been completely stripped back to the skeleton and then we’ve rebuilt from there. So we’ve got completely new utilities, new infrastructure, new sound proofing — everything you could possibly imagine.” WBSL has some of the largest sound stages in the UK covering an area of around a quarter of a million square feet. Four stages are over 30,000 square feet, four are over 20,000 square feet, and there’s a smaller stage that also houses an underwater tank. “We

have the ability to lift the floor up, fill it full of water, there’s full heating, full filtration, it’s 60ft square by 20ft deep, and there’s a viewing gallery,” Dark says. The Studios’ 100-acre backlot is one of the most extensive in Europe and offers level and graded areas, a former runway, open fields, hills, woodlands and clear horizons. WBSL also provides private, custom-built production hubs with a combination of office, meeting and kitchen facilities. There’s also a re-designed Studio Cafe, coffee

bar and 50-seat preview theatre. After an investment in excess of £100m, Warner Bros. has become the only Hollywood Studio to operate its own production facility in the UK. Dark says there’s great excitement about the development. “I think one of the really important points is, if Warner Bros. hadn’t stepped in and purchased the property, we would have lost probably over a third of the capacity in the UK to make major feature films. This is really important for the British Film industry.”


q The Bottle Yard has been more organic. It’s a partnership ini-


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Has got BIG doors to get BIG stuff in and out of too. Plus there’s an elevated outdoor water tank with natural skies, spill wall and DEEP centre section.The optically correct glass wall shooting platform means you don’t have to get wet or have underwater equipment while co-ordinating those ‘above and below’ shots. Not to mention11,000 sq. ft. of production offices waiting and ready for you, all based at Lasham Airfield, Alton in Hampshire where you can arrive by road, rail or air if you wish. It’s all really very easy. Call now on 020 3137 1086 or email:


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FEATURE studios


top left: the outdoor water tank at Black Hangar studios. top right: the King’s speech, shot at Elstree studios. ©Momentum Pictures, an Alliance Films Company. Bottom : Film City Glasgow

q it’s the only facility of its kind in scotland — previously film productions in the area often relied on derelict or disused buildings. indeed it was during the search through old council buildings for a location for Lynne Ramsay’s Ratcatcher (1999) that the film city idea was born. the FCG project has brought a historical building back into viable use. Formerly Govan town Hall, it was built between 1897 and 1901 and many of the original features remain including the ornate Chamber Room and the Main Hall — a 1901 theatre, now used as a build space. Jonathan Glazer’s under the skin (2012) and Jon Baird’s Filth (2012) are among recent productions to be hosted by FCG. Administrator sarah Potter says: “Production companies come here for a base and then the director or designer falls in love with the building and before we know it there’s a Victorian street at the back of the building and Burlesque Club in the Chamber Room.”

LONGCROSS STUDIOS ONGCROSS studios is a film and television production facility in Chertsey, surrey some 25 miles to the west of Central London. Longcross has its own railway station that runs 12 trains a day from London mainline station Waterloo. Built on the site of a former Ministry of defence tank factory Longcross is an impressive 350-acre site with four warehouse/studios. the biggest is 335 ft x 130 ft with 50 ft clear height. All are supported by 15 good-sized works shops and a three-story office block. on top of all this you will find an Edwardian Manor, the former officers mess, and a test track facility which has played many roles including a highway, and a European Alpine road. Railway station scenes featured in Martin scorcese’s Hugo were shot at Longcross. other productions shot there include Clash of the titans (2010), War Horse (2011) and John Carter (2012). Bob terry, studio manager at Longcross, has been there since 1989 and was responsible for the re-opening of the railway station and increasing the number of trains in and out of the dedicated railway station as the studios got busier. “i think produc-


tions like coming to Longcross because basically it is a blank canvas that offers filmmakers tremendous versatility and freedom, terry says.

PINEWOOD STUDIOS GROUP OSSIBLY the world’s most famous film stage can be found at Pinewood studios. the mighty 007 stage was originally built for the spy Who Loved Me (1977) and covers 59,000 square feet — large enough to house a complete fishing village for Mamma Mia! (2008). Pinewood doesn’t just cater for blockbusters, however, and offers 16 stages in a variety of different sizes, the smallest being 1,728 square feet. it’s also home to perhaps Europe’s best-known, studio-based underwater filming stage, as well as one of the largest exterior tanks in Europe. there are two digital television studios, audio post-production facilities and a preview theatre. Pinewood is based around the old estate of Heatherden Hall which still stands today. the mansion, lake and formal gardens have been used for exterior shots in many productions over the years, a recent example being simon Curtis’ My Week With Marilyn (2011). the 100-acre site is 20 miles west of London and accommodates more than 100 specialist media service companies. diving services uK is based at Pinewood studios, managing a unique purpose-built facility with a state-of-the-art underwater stage. the company specialises in diving co-ordination for media projects to facilitate filming in and around water. in the uK today the name Pinewood covers a group of three neighbouring studios each of which have played — and continue to play — their own significant role in the British film and television industries. Communications and public affairs manager Mark Hamilton says that the Group’s history and the reputation of its three studios does help oil the wheels of business, but it is conscious of the need to keep up with, and ahead of, global competition. “Heritage certainly plays a part. the Group’s uKbased Pinewood, shepperton and teddington studios date q



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Left: 3 Mills Studios. Right: The chamber of the UK Parliament’s House of Commons, a permanent set at Wimbledon Studios

q back to the early 20th Century and have been home to some of the most successful feature films and TV shows ever made,” Hamilton says. “However heritage on its own is not enough. We are competing in a global market place and need to keep investing in our infrastructure to remain competitive. We have, for example, recently completed a £3.3m electricity supply upgrade to the site.” Pinewood has also finished construction of the brand new, 30,000 sq ft Richard Attenborough stage. This is the second biggest at Pinewood and adds 7% capacity. Although host to Errol Flynn’s first major role in the 1935 movie Murder At Monte Carlo, Teddington Studios has for many years been dedicated to TV production, and has served as home to the best of British television light entertainment for several decades. Situated just outside London on the River Thames, Teddington houses eight television studios, accommodating a host of TV channels, and broadcasting up to 24-hours-a-day. Shepperton Studios in Surrey is 15 miles southwest of London, and a short drive west of Teddington. Another great name in British cinema, Shepperton currently offers 15 stages ranging from 3,000 sq ft to 30,000 sq ft, including five with interior tanks. Although often a home for independents, Shepperton has hosted blockbusters including Joe Johnston’s Captain America: The First Avenger (2011) and Jonathan Liebesman’s Wrath Of The Titans (2012).

WIMBLEDON STUDIOS IMBLEDON Film and Television Studios was, until 2010, home to the long-running UK serial drama The Bill. Now under new management, the complex has undergone a major refurbishment and offers four stages, including two large sound stages of


approximately 8,000 sq ft each. It also houses a growing media village. What makes Wimbledon unique however, is its heritage. There are more than 50 free-standing sets including an exterior street, police stations, hospitals, a prison and a courtroom. The studios have quickly become a popular destination for a range of productions, particularly TV comedies and feature films. The House of Commons scenes in Phyllida Lloyd’s Academy Award-winning The Iron Lady (2011) were filmed at Wimbledon, a set which now remains on site and ready-made. The second series of TV series Episodes, starring Matt LeBlanc, was shot at Wimbledon and, being a comedy about working in television, the team not only hired both main stages but also shot in and around the studio grounds. Managing director Piers Read says the range of permanently standing sets makes Wimbledon Studios truly unique, and thinks of it as a producers’ playground. “We’ve got the facilities for a whole production to do a one-stop shop. They can build their sets here, they can shoot on location here using our freestanding sets. We’ve got large-scale production offices, we’ve got editing facilities and the IT connectivity to support any production.” Read says the site’s past means the studios are regarded with much affection. “There were so many good professionals, so many good people that worked here for so long, it was a hotbed of talent for producers, directors, cast, and writers,” he says. “People walk through the building, and while they are slightly surprised at how it’s had a pretty extensive makeover which we needed to do to make it a commercial entity, it’s clearly still where The Bill was produced and we’re very proud of the fact it was here. Essentially we’re now custodians of the site.” CLIVE BULL For further information on studios in the UK please visit

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Location UK has teamed up with film commissions, location scouts, and photographers, to bring you images of stunning locations around the UK. Some are well-trodden by film crews, others still to be made famous on the big or small screen...


location uk IN PICTURES

THE THAMES BARRIER, LONDON The Thames Barrier is the world’s second-largest movable flood barrier and is located downstream of central London. The barrier spans 520 metres across the River Thames near Woolwich, and it protects 125 square kilometres of central London from flooding caused by tidal surges. It became operational in 1982 and has 10 steel gates that can be raised into position across the river. When raised, the main gates stand as high as a five-storey building and as wide as the opening of Tower Bridge, which is further west along the river, closer to the centre of London. Each main gate weighs 3,300 tonnes. Shoots at this iconic location include TV series Dr Who, Spooks, Footballers’ Wives, London's Burning, Comic Strip, Countryfile,and Secret Diary Of A Call Girl. A number of documentaries, and feature films including Our Boy (1997) and Flood (2007), have also shot here. (Photo, courtesy The Environment Agency/Jamie Lumley)


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SHAMBLES, YORK Shambles is a street in the city of York, in the north of England, with overhanging timber-framed buildings, some dating back to the 14th Century. It was also known as The Great Flesh Shambles, after the word for shelves that butchers used to display their meat. Shambles is a popular film set and featured in the 2008 TV drama Crusoe, starring Sean Bean and based on Daniel Defoe’s early 18th Century novel Robinson Crusoe. (Photo, courtesy Visit York)


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ASHRIDGE FOREST, HOME COUNTIES This magnificent countryside estate runs across the borders of home counties Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire, north of London, and along the main ridge of the Chiltern Hills. Ashridge forest is a popular filming location because it can double for so many countries and eras. The estate and house have hosted many TV productions, and feature films including Sleepy Hollow (1999), Enigma (2001), Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason (2004), Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire (2005), and Children Of Men (2006). (Photo, courtesy National Trust Images/Michael Caldwell)

THE WINDMILL, HOW HILL, NORFOLK This Grade 11 listed windmill was built in 1824 as a working grain mill. Today it is fully-fitted out as a modern dwelling with its own mooring on the River Ant, which is part of the Norfolk Broads. The Norfolk Broads are a series of connected rivers and lakes in flatland 140 miles north of London and just east of the city of Norwich. For filming they offer an "other worldly" feel with enormous skies. Features shot here include The Go-Between (1970) and Full Metal Jacket (1987). (Photo,courtesy Harriet Lawrence/Guild of Location Managers)


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REDSANDS SEA FORT, THAMES ESTUARY The Redsands Sea Fort is one of two remaining sea forts designed by Guy Maunsell, which helped to defend the Thames Estuary during World War II. It is a seven-tower complex and each houses two floors with five small rooms. The Redsands Fort is a unique location that is steeped in history, eight miles off-shore from the harbour town of Whitstable in Kent, some 60 miles south of London. Productions that have used this location include the BBC1’s time-travel series Dr Who, BBC1’s evening magazine show The One Show, The Prodigy’s Invaders Must Die music video, and Coast, the BBC2 series that explores the coastlines of the UK. (Photo, courtesy Project Redsand)

THE SILENT VALLEY, NORTHERN IRELAND Ringed by mountains, The Silent Valley is located within the Mourne Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Northern Ireland. Hewn from granite more than 50 million years ago and the result of a series of ice ages, this is a land of myths and legends, a tranquil landscape with impressive views, woodlands and waterfalls and megalithic tombs hidden in the uplands. A spectacular heather bloom colours the valley’s slopes during summer when dragonflies, lizards and mountain birds can be seen. Nearby Saint Patrick’s Stream is said to mark the boundary of the old Kingdom of Mourne. Local legend says a rock with a hand print lies in the stream where St Patrick banished snakes from Ireland, and knelt down to drink the water. (Photo, courtesy Chris Hill)

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Located in the heart of London’s legal quarter, Middle Temple Hall is one of four ancient Inns of Court. Just a few minutes from Fleet Street, The Strand and Embankment and overlooking the River Thames, Middle Temple was built between 1562 and 1573 and remains virtually unchanged to this day having survived the Great Fire of London and the two World Wars. The location was used recently in Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011). Other movies shot here include Shakespeare In Love (1998), The Mummy Returns (2001) and The Da Vinci Code (2006). (Photo, courtesy Jamie Lumley)




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ROKER PIER, COUNTY DURHAM Roker Pier is a magnificent breakwater situated at the mouth of the River Wear, in Sunderland, County Durham, in northeast England. It was used for Gabrielle And Me (2001) starring Scottish comedian and actor Billy Connolly in 2001. The Bryn Higgins film Unconditional, starring Melanie Hill and Christian Cooke, filmed here in 2011. (Photo, courtesy Northern Film and Media/ GOLM)

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Royal Crescent is a residential road of 30 houses laid out in a crescent in the city of Bath, Somerset, in the southwest of England, 100 miles from London. These houses are among the finest examples of Georgian architecture and are protected as Grade 1 listed buildings. This picture was taken from Royal Victoria Park situated below the Crescent. Saul Dibb’s 2008 film The Duchess, starring Keira Knightley, used The Royal Crescent to good effect, with carriages going up and down the road and characters in period dresses. Other productions shot here include Dracula (1992), Sense And Sensibility (1995), The Queen (2006), and BBC1’s period drama Lark Rise To Candelford (2008). (Photo, courtesy Bath Tourism Plus)

ARDKINGLAS HOUSE, ARGYLL Ardkinglas House, completed in 1907, is generally considered to be the architect Sir Robert Lorimer’s masterpiece. Situated on the shores of Loch Fyne in Argyll, Scotland, against a spectacular background of mountain and forest, its interior and exterior lochside setting have enhanced many productions. These include The Rocket Post (2004), Max Manus: Man Of War (2008), BBC TV miniseries The Crow Road (1996), The Good Guys (2010) and long-running BBC soap Eastenders. (Photo, courtesy Ardkinglas Estate)




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LONDON SKYLINE The London Eye Ferris wheel dominates the London skyline in this picture, taken from the Millennium Bridge, which spans the River Thames east from this picture, linking the Tate Modern arts centre on the south bank, and St Paul’s Cathedral on the north bank. Also in shot on the north bank of the River Thames are the Houses of Parliament. The London Eye, built as part of Britain’s millennium celebrations, has featured in numerous TV series, commercials, documentaries and feature films. (Photo, courtesy James Dewar)


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Dating back to 1119, Leeds Castle, in the county of Kent, became a favourite residence of King Edward 1 and is described as ‘the loveliest castle in the world’ — making it an ideal picturesque setting for many different types of production. The castle is furnished, making it attractive for interior filming, and the grounds are beautiful all year round. Leeds Castle is 50 miles south of London, and easily accessible for film crews based in the capital. The 1949 film Kind Hearts And Coronets was filmed here. More recently the castle has hosted a number of TV shows including The Apprentice, Antiques Roadshow and Celebrity MasterChef. (Photo, courtesy Leeds Castle Foundation)

FYRISH MONUMENT, EASTER ROSS Fyrish Monument was built in 1782 on Fyrish Hill, on the Novar Estate near Evanton, Easter Ross, Scotland. It was built on the orders of Sir Hector Munro, 8th of Novar, a native lord of the area who had served in India as a general. It is said to be a copy of large gates which once stood at the port town of Negapatam, near Madras, India. One of the myths surrounding the monument is that Munro ordered the local unemployed people to build it so that he could pay them, as they would not take his charity. Another myth says that when the locals had brought the stones to the top of the hill ready to build, he rolled them back down again so he could pay them twice. The site has yet to feature in any significant productions. (Photo, courtesy Helian Photography,

CASTLE COMBE, WILTSHIRE This small village in Wiltshire in the southwest of England, with a population of around 350, has a history going back before the Roman invasion. The village is known for its beauty, tranquility and fine historical buildings that reflect its heritage as an important centre for the wool industry, including a fine medieval church. Steven Spielberg’s War Horse (2011), an adaptation of Michael Morpurgo’s novel, shot here. Other productions using this location include Doctor Dolittle (1967), Stardust (2007), The Wolfman (2010), and long-running TV series Poirot, which began in 1989 and is based on Agatha Christie’s crime novels. (Photo, courtesy Emma Pill, Guild of Location Managers)


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HOLYWELL BAY, CORNWALL Holywell Bay’s sandy beach, rock pools and dunes are located on the north coast of the county of Cornwall in the southwest of England, and is named after a freshwater spring at the north end of the beach. The opening sequence of the James Bond film Die Another Day (2002) was filmed here, as well as scenes for Gulliver’s Travels (2010). (Photo, courtesy National Trust Images/Philip Fenton/Lightwork)


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ANCHOR CLOSE, EDINBURGH Dating back to 1521, this is one of many passages, or closes, which wind through the Scottish city of Edinburgh, giving it a quaint, and sometimes eerie atmosphere. These passages can be period or contemporary and also can be controlled easily for productions.The area has been used in the BBC adaptation of Charles Dickens’ novel Great Expectations and a number of television documentaries. (Photo courtesy Francis Lopez)


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OLD ROYAL NAVAL COLLEGE- PAINTED HALL, LONDON This architectural centrepiece of Maritime Greenwich is a World Heritage Site and one of the most filmed locations in London. It has been used for countless films including Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011), The King’s Speech (2010), Four Weddings And A Funeral (1994) and Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows (2011). The Painted Hall is often described as the ‘finest dining hall in Europe’. The Old Royal Naval College is a location that doubles well for Westminster and the gates have often doubled for Buckingham Palace. Frequently, the roads through the college are used to portray London streets — especially for scenes involving stunt work, or period films. (Photo, courtesy New Century PR/The Old Royal Naval College /James Brittain Photography)


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THE GARDEN HOUSE, MIDDLESEX The Garden House was built in 1780 by Robert Adam, in the Pleasure Grounds at Osterley, Middlesex. The building has a semi-circular front and iconic pilasters. Osterley Park and House offers a wealth of locations from its long gallery and kitchens, to its lakes and parkland. For many films it offers more than one location. Many films have shot here including Amazing Grace (2006). (Photo, courtesy National Trust Images/Andrew Butler)

RIBBLEHEAD, NORTH YORKSHIRE A 24-arch railway viaduct across the valley of the River Ribble at Ribblehead in North Yorkshire in the north of England, is the longest viaduct on the Settle-Carlisle Railway, which passes through some of the UK’s most spectacular scenery in the Yorkshire Dales. Although it is used by a regular passenger service it is possible to run steam trains on the line. The viaduct plays a starring role in the Harry Potter series of movies as part of the Hogwarts Express Railway line. (Photo, courtesy Jane Soans, Guild of Location Managers)


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CONEY ISLAND, COUNTY DOWN This picture shows the shore at Coney Island, a small village in County Down, Northern Ireland, that looks out towards Killough with the Mourne Mountains in the background. Coney Island is off the beaten track, timeless, and offers a beautiful mixture of coastline and mountains — making it attractive to tourists and film crews. There is little traffic — the sounds are seabirds, the chug of fishing boats and the wind in the rushes. In this picture the tide is out, perfect for picking mussels off the sea bed. The Mourne Mountains in the background have featured in the movies Your Highness (2011) and Killing Bono (2011) and Terry George’s 2011 Oscar-winning short The Shore. (Photo, courtesy Aidan Monaghan)

SOUTHSEA SUN HUTS, HAMPSHIRE There have been beach huts — here called Sun Huts — along the seafront in Southsea, Portsmouth, on the south coast of England, since the late 1940s. Owned and leased by the local council, these traditional beach huts look directly over The Solent — the stretch of water between the coast and the Isle of Wight in the English Channel. (Photo, courtesy Film Hampshire/Patrick Stokes)


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Albert (Jeremy Irvine) and his horse Joey. Some 14 Joeys were used during the filming of DreamWorks Pictures’ War Horse


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a role


takes a leading


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Major Stewart (Benedict Cumberbatch (left), Lieutenant Waverly (Patrick Kennedy) and Captain Nicholls (Tom Huddleston) in a scene from DreamWorks Pictures’ War Horse





STEVEN Spielberg’s War Horse, an adaptation of the 1982 novel and the 2007 stage production, has its fair share of stars: David Thewlis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Jeremy Irvine, Emily Watson... and then there are the horses — there were 14 involved in playing the part of Joey. But for many, the real star of the movie is Dartmoor. Spielberg was captivated by the striking beauty of the rolling Devon landscape and considered the land and the sky to be the “third character” of the story. Describing it as his first through-andthrough British film, Spielberg has gone to great lengths to explain how important the location was to the production, even writing to a local paper that serves one of Devon’s cities, the Plymouth Evening Herald: "I have never before, in my long and eclectic career, been gifted with such an abundance of natural beauty as I experienced filming War Horse on Dartmoor.” Michael Morpurgo, whose home village is in North Devon, chose the county as the book’s setting, and it didn’t take long for the film to head in the same direction. “The wish of the producers was always to go to where the book was set and they felt it would bring a lot to the story,” location

manager Martin Joy says. “Other closerto-London options were looked at but ultimately Dartmoor was always going to be the place to do it.” A key location was the Narracott family’s farmhouse, where Joey is nurtured and trained. Enormous effort went into finding the right building, with the final choice being Ditsworthy Warren House, a remote Grade II listed building near the Dartmoor village of Sheepstor.


“We scouted every inch of Dartmoor from the air and by road and eventually we found it from a helicopter. It was a very secluded house,” Joy says. Other rural scenes were shot in the small Dartmoor villages of Meavy and Widecombe-in-theMoor. Creative England’s Fiona Francombe, senior production liaison manager, south of England, helped in the process of finding just the right spot and

was delighted that Spielberg kept loyal to the South West. “The quality of light over here is different, there is a real tangible softness to the light. The countryside and the light — the combination gives anything that shoots down here a fantastic atmosphere. There’s a beautiful quality that’s quite distinctive.” According to Spielberg there were three days of amazing sunsets and he was able to take advantage of them. He says that in an age where audiences expect digital enhancements and assume things are not real, the Devon skies remained untouched. No sky or landscape was enhanced or replaced in the entire movie. Joy says that the elements played their part perfectly. “The one thing we found was that we had all sorts of different weather while we were doing it, but everyday we ended up with the right weather for the scene. It was uncanny.” Well, almost. When it came to the sequence where Albert and Joey have to plough a rocky field in driving rain, some film craft came into play. “It wasn’t natural rain, but it wasn’t a bright sunny day. We had an overcast day and we brought the rain.” Francombe says the filming has been a

a popular choice for filmmakers and well known by location managers. It has featured in films including the classic Doctor Doolittle (Richard Fleischer, 1967), Matthew Vaughn’s Stardust (2007) and many TV period dramas including the BBC’s Lark Rise To Candleford. Francombe says Castle Combe lends itself well to period filming because it is so picturesque,


but also controllable. For War Horse a temporary road surface more suited to the period was laid, modern lamps and notices were covered up and set dressers brought in large numbers of flowers and plants to indicate a change in the seasons. Another of the stand-out scenes in War Horse was the sequence set in No Man’s Land where opposing forces come together to attempt to rescue Joey, tangled in what appears to be a mass of barbed wire. The wire used was rubber prop wire and part of the filming of this scene utilised an animatronic horse. Framestore, based in

Soho, central London, provided these and other effects which won a BAFTA nomination for the Framestore team led by Ben Morris, Mike Mulholland, Chris Zeh and Duncan Burbidge. “It was an interesting brief to find somewhere that you can turn into a first world war battlefield,” Martin Joy says. “It was a very usable space. It really served the purpose. The great thing about it was that it was a field surrounded by concrete, because it used to be an airfield so although we had mud in the middle, we had hard standing around the outside. In terms of facilitating a shoot like that, it was the perfect combination.” Later scenes in the film were shot at Bourne Wood in Surrey which became home to an army base and the hill up which Joey has to haul heavy artillery. Bourne Wood was first used as a location by Ridley Scott in 2000 for the opening battle scene in Gladiator, and has since played host to numerous productions including Joe Johnston’s Captain America: The First Avenger (2011) and Bryan Singer’s forthcoming Jack The Giant Killer. But when it comes to locations, it’s the looming skies and unforgiving landscape of Dartmoor for which War Horse will be remembered. CLIVE BULL

England is rich with creative energy, ability and opportunity. Its unrivalled locations, diverse and talented crew base and flexible infrastructure combine to produce the top quality film, television and digital media for which we are internationally renowned. Creative England’s job is to grow, support and connect these key elements of our creative landscape to ensure a vibrant and sustainable future for all.

creative england

For more information on how we could help you to make the most of everything the English regions have to offer, go to our website g at @creativeengland


genuine boost to the region and has raised Devon’s profile. Indeed tourist attractions in the area often now refer to themselves as being in ‘War Horse country’. Spielberg’s lavish praise to the local paper goes some way to explaining why he was so taken with the location. “With two and a half weeks of extensive coverage of landscapes and skies, I hardly scratched the surface of the visual opportunities that were offered to me,” he wrote. "We have had an incredibly successful shoot and every member of our substantial crew has commented on what a great experience the shoot in Dartmoor has been.” The British Film Commission (BFC) team worked closely with the film’s co-producer Tracey Seaward, giving assistance and support throughout production in the UK. BFC chief executive Adrian Wootton says: “It is a great honour to have Steven Spielberg here shooting in the UK, and in seeing the final film, he used our wonderful locations to fantastic effect.” Outside of Devon, the production also went to Castle Combe in Wiltshire, also in South West England, north-east of Devon, which played the part of the Narracott’s local village. Often described as the prettiest village in England, Castle Combe is


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The average feature film can produce some 2,000 tonnes of carbon emmissions. The US alone produces some 600 features each year. Add to that other leading filmmaking countries — India, Japan, Russia, France — and you’re talking about a destructive force. Which is why countries around the world are now starting to take this issue seriously, not least the UK Bourne Wood. Photo: Tom Bull

HE DESTINY of Earth and mankind’s role in protecting our planet, is a theme that’s been addressed in some great movies, from Richard Fleischer’s prophetic Soylent Green (1973), to Roland Emmerich’s cataclysmic 2012 (2009). The film industry has played a significant part in raising the awareness of green issues and it’s a cause frequently espoused by some of cinema’s biggest names. Today there’s a growing tendency for filmmakers to consider the impact of what’s going on behind the scenes as well as in front of the camera. With an estimated 2,000 tonnes of carbon emissions produced by the average feature film production, the industry is becoming increasingly conscious of its own responsibilities. At the forefront of this move towards greater sustainability in the UK is Greenshoot, a company that specialises in environmental consultancy and management for filming. “We are warmly welcomed. I think there are a lot of people wondering why it didn’t happen a long time ago and thinking as an industry, it was time we put our house in order,” co-founder Paul Evans says. “People would stand around on set and say ’Why doesn’t somebody do something about this?’, but it was nobody’s job to do it, which is why traditionally it hasn’t got done. So we thought the obvious solution was to form a company and to provide that service.”


“IN THE EXPENSIVE AREA OF HAZARDOUS WASTE, CHARITIES HAVE ALSO BENEFITED” PAUL EVANS Recycling is central to Greenshoot’s work. The immense set at Shepperton for Carl Rinsch’s 47 Ronin (2012) was recycled with Greenshoot’s help, with construction and on-set waste, including food, diverted from landfill. Evans says there is often a virtuous circle, whereby one film’s waste product can become useful to another. With Michael Hoffman’s Gambit (2013) there were elements of the set that were not wanted and Greenshoot knew of another production that could put them to good use, saving removal and recycling costs for one, and production costs for the other. “We’ve taken all kinds of things off [producers’] hands from 300 bamboo trees, through to fridges and microwaves and we will redistribute those to charities,” Evans says. “In the expensive area of hazardous waste, charities have also benefited. Unused paint, which can cost a lot to process, is gratefully received.” As part of the Warner Bros. Green Initiative, Greenshoot was q




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Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows (2011). The team worked with the production over a six-month period and ultimately 756 tonnes of film waste was diverted from landfill. Film London launched an eco-friendly initiative called Green Screen back in 2008 which is a practical guide that aims to help film and TV producers cut their carbon emission. One of the first feature films to employ some of the scheme’s methods was Cemetery Junction (2010), a feature co-directed by comedy duo Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, creators of The Office. They introduced several simple ideas including replacing plastic water bottles with bottles that could be refilled. “Not using plastic water bottles is a really big thing as you can go through thousands a week,” unit production manager Joan Schneider says. “We bought everyone a permanent bottle with the crew or cast member’s name on it and the film’s logo as a kind Scorched earth: John Carter (Taylor Kitsch) and Dejah Thoris (Lynn Collins) in Disney’s John Carter, which employed green runners and recycled wood used in sets, for fencing. ©2011 Disney

of incentive for keeping it, and the bottle would clip on to belts to make them easy to carry. They became like a souvenir; we even had some go missing.” Schneider says it is vital for such projects to be included in the budget right from the start as the initial outlay can be significant. Other productions that backed the movement included Working Title’s Nanny McPhee & The Big Bang (2010) where 94% of the set was recycled; X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009), which saved $55,000 by diverting 615 tonnes of waste from landfill; and Disney introduced a host of eco-friendly measures for Alice In Wonderland (2010) and John Carter (2012), including the employment of green runners and the re-use of wood for scenery construction to make fencing. Harvey Edgington, British heritage organisation the National Trust’s broadcast and media liaison manager says: “As an environmental organisation we take green issues very seriously. We expect all our partners to reach standards and John Carter was an ideal opportunity to raise our  game even further. We knew from our experience on Alice that Disney would be equally committed.” On location, film companies are also taking greater care over the impact their activities may have on the immediate surroundings. The Forestry Commission’s range of woodland and forest settings around the UK has been used as a location for many feature films. The arrival of a major film crew will always raise issues about the environment but it appears it can often be mutually beneficial. Pam Eastwood, the Commission’s filming liaison and development officer, says the regular shoots at Bourne Wood in Surrey (1995’s Braveheart, 2000’s Gladiator, 2010’s Robin Hood, 2012’s Captain America: The First Avenger) have been good for bio-diversity. An added benefit of the filming is that one area has remained clear-felled and become an economically viable home for different types of wildlife. “If we didn’t have filming, reptiles wouldn’t have anywhere to live in this wood,” Eastwood says. “It’s the movie business that’s keeping this clearing open. The reptile population here is benefiting because the filming is creating the right habitat.” A useful side-product of Rupert Sanders’ Snow White And The Huntsmen (2012) shooting in the wood was that one area was prevented from turning into a thicket. “They cut all the little pines down and

it’s now perfect for reptiles,” Eastwood says. Environmental considerations are discussed in advance with location managers, and Eastwood says productions are always keen to enhance an area where possible. “The tracks and trails in this wood have been significantly improved for walkers by filming because they will have put sandstone down in the bottom and it has got rid of all the mud.” The tarmac road into the wood was put in by Children Of Men (2006) and remains, by mutual agreement, as a useful public facility. A key ingredient in greening the screen is the ability to quantify your cost to the environment. That is where carbon calculators like Albert come in. Widely used in the UK, Albert was created by BBC sustainable production manager Richard Smith and adopted by BAFTA (British Academy Of Film And Television Arts) who have made it available via their website. The tool is designed to measure the amount of greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere as a direct result of a production and can calculate the total carbon footprint and the CO2 used per hour of output. “By getting that figure we’re able to make meaningful comparisons between productions, genres and different production methods,” Smith says. “With every new footprint completed and included in the overall pot of data, we are getting benchmarking and a better understanding of what the carbon impact of a production actually is.” With its user-friendly interface, staff can input figures and from the resulting charts can assess which aspects have the most impact on the environment, whether it be the production office, travel, edit suites or location shooting. Smith says there is an industry-wide desire to make the UK a world leader in sustainable production. “It resonates with people because it appeals to both your heart and your head. If you cut carbon you’ll save money, but you also know that you’re doing something that is for the benefit of us all.” As well as reducing their overall carbon footprint by changing practices, productions are also choosing to offset their carbon output. Carbon Aware Productions (CAP) was set up by Algy Sloane, a location manager with a particular interest in eco-issues. His company examines daily call sheets, looking at distances travelled to and from locations, flights taken and power consumed on location and in the studio. CAP also works in conjunction with the Woodland Trust to plant trees in native wood-

“IF WE DIDN’T HAVE FILMING, REPTILES WOULDN’T HAVE ANYWHERE TO LIVE IN THIS WOOD” PAM EASTWOOD land in the UK to offset a shoot’s carbon footprint. Sloane says he hopes sustainable filming will become the norm. “A few years ago it was regarded as a pain to have health and safety standards, but now it’s standard to do a risk assessment and have a health and safety officer on set. I hope that will happen with green awareness, that it will become common practice.” Another guiding light in the UK drive toward eco-friendly filming is the British Standard BS 8909. The standard is designed to help organisations improve their sustainability by implementing and assessing developments at a company-wide level. “It gives the film industry a robust framework for managing our social and environmental impacts,” Oscar-winner Colin Firth said at its launch. Eco Age, Firth’s corporate sustainability consultancy, played a key role in the introduction of the standard, running pilot schemes with organisations who adopted the standard, including Ealing Studios and the BFI (British Film Institute). “It’s a very important first step towards the subject being accepted and taken seriously — it gives it credibility because it’s a British Standard,” Greenshoot’s Paul Evans says. “It is not mandatory but it may well be eventually. What is going to make the difference, and it may be imminent, is legislation that dictates that productions have to recycle and they have to be environmentally responsible for everything that they do.” CLIVE BULL


q brought in to carry out a complete carbon audit for Guy Ritchie’s


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Victor and Sparky in Tim Burton’s Frankenweenie. Photo: Leah Gallo. © Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved


what’s on? Frankenweenie

is the subject of a new Disney exhibition that features 3 Mills Studios and explores the stop-motion techniques used in the production. Frankenweenie opens in the UK on October 5, 2012.


FROM Beetlejuice to Jack Skellington, Tim Burton has created some of the most memorable and beloved characters of our time. It is Halloween 2011 and a testament to the enduring enchantment of Burton that, on the tube en-route to 3 Mills Studios, we sit opposite an Edward Scissorhands. 3 Mills Studios, in Bow, East London, has fast gained a reputation as one of the world’s finest stop-motion animation centres. While London has been preparing for the most important event to be staged in the capital in modern times — The London 2012 Olympics — 3 Mills Studios has watched the Olympic Stadium take shape next door and the whole of nearby Stratford has been redeveloped around them. But meanwhile this prolific studio continues with business as usual, and last year Tim Burton returned — after shooting Corpse Bride at 3 Mills in 2005 — to shoot Frankenweenie.

“3D is going to be exciting,” producer Allison Abbate says. “And it’s black-and-white 3D. When you see a set and you can touch it and put your hands in, that’s what 3D will do. It will open it up for people to really be inside so that they’ll feel like that they’re part of it, like a doll’s house.” Abbate, who worked with Burton on The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993) and produced his stop-motion Corpse Bride (2005), as well as Wes Anderson’s Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009), shows us around the set. The former site of an 18th century mill, the studio is now home to an army of talented animators from around the world as well as a gruesome Puppet Hospital — where tiny teeth and skeletons line the worktops and sick puppets go to rehabilitate. The love and pride the animators feel towards their charges is evident throughout the tour. “If they go, we’re wondering when they’ll come back!” production assis-


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s ’ p





tor is about 40cm, and Sparky is about 11cm. The miniature sets built in varying scales are stunning in their detail. An animator shows us a segment he has just completed. There are gasps and sighs. “That’s Vampire Cat,” Abbate says. “Tim Burton’s favourite part of the “WE MIGHT DO TWO OR THREE DIFFERENT movie is Vampire Cat Girl.” VERSIONS OR MOCK-UPS AND TIM WILL SAY andInWeird this version of ‘I LIKE THAT ONE’” Frankenweenie, Victor’s HANNAH FERGUSON scientific experiment crying.” An animator comes running out unleashes a whole host of other fantastic from his unit, excitedly waving his hands creatures on the town, from Wererat (“he’s in the air. “Are you visiting me?” he says, a rat that was turned into a werewolf but eager to show his work. “You want to show he’s a rat”) to Turtle Monster. “You can creus some stuff?” replies Abbate. “Yeah, yeah! ate a hero or you can create a monster,” AbI’ve got some really cool stuff to show.” bate says. This, it turns out, is the crux of There are dozens of sets on the go at any the movie. “If you are doing it for power, one time. We see at least seven, with one you create a monster. If you are doing it for or two animators working in each unit. love, you create a superhero.” Moving on we visit a series of other elabAdult puppets stand at 50-60cm high. Victant Hannah Ferguson says. “We’re often thinking about the puppets.” It’s nearing the end of the shoot and the production is beginning to wrap up. “It’s really emotional and sweet,” Abbate says, adding: “In every unit there’s somebody

orate sets, including two different scale models of a fairground. The breathtakingly beautiful creation includes an intricate working Ferris wheel. Careful thought even went into what was playing at the cinema, and Burton settled on Bambi. The set took two months to build. The animators demonstrate how the Ferris wheel turns. “At the moment we’re just rotating the Ferris wheel and slightly adjusting the chairs so they maintain their gravity,” the animator says. “The spin here is fully-mech. Not only does it spin, but those arms are fully mech too, so they’re going up and down… I’ve just got to turn the cars.” Every detail has to be perfect. Frankenweenie has been in production for two years. “This is stopframe,” Abbate says. “Image by image. Move it. Take a picture. Move it. Take a picture. The computer doesn’t do it… Sometimes they have five or 10 characters. You have to remember who’s getting up, q




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Director/producer Tim Burton studies a model of Sparky during the making of Walt Disney Pictures’ Frankenweenie. Photo: Leah Gallo. © Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved

q who’s walking, who’s winking, who’s crying. Whatever they’re doing. They have to keep it all in their heads.” Next up we see a full-scale model of the fairground. “And this is after the Turtle Monster has come in.” But now the set has been trashed. “They made all these beautiful props and then we messed them all up. They were nice for a minute and then they were broken. We destroyed it.” Heartbreaking set after heartbreaking set follows. Victor carries Sparky down from a gothic-looking windmill; Sparky lies in front of a car; Victor’s attic room is rigged for a monstrous experiment; this has to be one of Burton’s most endearing monsters yet. The emotion a puppet can hold can match the most seasoned of actors. “A lot of it is in the posing of the puppet,” Abbate says. We make our way to Burton’s own mad laboratory — the Puppet Hospital. “The puppets often break and get sick and need to be cared for,” Abbate says. “So we have a whole team of people who do that.” Puppet maker and animation producer Mackinnon & Saunders has re-teamed with Burton to continue the groundbreaking advancements made on Corpse Bride. The Manchester-based company split the puppet build with the team at 3 Mills. One of the world’s leading puppet making companies, Mackinnon & Saunders created the iconic Martian from Mars Attacks! (1996) and worked on both Corpse Bride and Fantastic Mr. Fox. “These puppets are so real, they are so sensitive and textural, you really do be-

lieve they are alive,” Burton says of Mackinnon & Saunders. “They do such beautiful work.” The team at the Puppet Hospital is also responsible for the ongoing maintenance of puppets and makes any specific props or costumes that are needed — from tiny leather bags and dinosaur-print pajamas to miniature working bikes and minute umbrellas. “We might do two or three different versions or mock-ups and Tim will say ’I like that one’ or ’I really like that one’ and


then we’ll go ahead and make an approved costume. A lot of them are backed with wire or they have silicone or foil inside to make them more animatable,” Hannah Ferguson says. “Before we get an approval, we go for a sculpt, then we make the mould. Then we can do lots of duplicates. We have 18 Victors … and we’ve got 11 dead Sparkys.” Ferguson shows us the armature — the puppets mechanical skeleton which allows the animator to move the puppet into the required positions. Custom-made joints are fitted; some are adapted from existing mechanisms — the feet, for example, which are made from spectacle hinges. After the puppet goes through the armature stage, it goes back in the mould and is given a foam body and silicone skin. “It took us about 10 weeks to get the first Sparky right,” Ferguson says. After that, “to get a Sparky turned around takes about 10

days”. The complex ’head necks’ have lip and eye paddles that can be adapted to move the face; allen keys control the hair and other movements. Mr. Rzykruski is the only puppet with replacement mouths — 14 different mouths fixed with magnets. “It gives you an idea of all the different mouth sounds we have tried to achieve,” Ferguson says. Various techniques have been used for different effects. The Victor puppet has real human hair, while some puppets have synthetic hair — and others, for example Mr. Whiskers, have goat hair. Mr. Whiskers the cat is something of a show stealer. “You have to make new eyes and pupils all the time, because things get damaged from wear and tear or they get lost. And then we blink as well, so we’ve got about 20 different blink positions per puppet. So that’s 40… And there are 18 different Victors — that’s a lot of eyes. So we’ve constantly got someone filing down pupils for us and making eyes.” Then there are other little touches, like the Bride of Frankenstein streak in Elsa the Poodle’s hair, the shadow of rain in Victor’s attic, and the wagging tail that drops off Sparky post-resurrection, that complete the captivating world of Frankenweenie. The shadow in the attic was done on the set using a back projection. “We shot water,” Abbate says, “then projected it one frame at a time onto a screen that puts a shadow onto him.” “Tim is so happy… it’s been magical for him,” Abbate says. “It’s the combination of this beloved story and the medium…” ALISON WILLIAMS


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WHEN hBo decided to transfer george rr martin’s epic vision game of thrones to the small screen, fans must have strained their imagination trying to work out where the series would be shot. What mix of locations could provide a suitable backdrop for so many ethnic groups, epic backdrops, man-made marvels and climate zones? CgI, of course, could provide part of the answer. But the suspension of disbelief required for a project of this scale and sophistication also demanded on-the-ground, real-world production across a number of countries. In seasons one and two, for example, locations used have included malta,

Croatia, morocco (primarily for exotic scenes), Iceland, scotland and northern Ireland (primarily for cold, bleak, wintery scenes). for northern Ireland, being part of such a high-profile and well-regarded production is the vindication of a strategy that was put in place just five years ago. “there has been an indigenous film-making community for some time,” northern Ireland screen head of marketing, moyra Lock, says, “but with regard to large incoming productions, for instance from the Us, there had been no business until 2007 for obvious historical reasons.” Lock says that around that time northern Ireland q

53 MAKING A SCENE game of thrones

Alfie Allen as Theon Greyjoy in the HBO series Game Of Thrones ©HBO


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q Screen (NI Screen) decided the time was right to set about rectifying this situation. “So we lobbied and got government funding. At the same time,” she adds, “we mounted extensive marketing campaigns to position Northern Ireland as a worldwide location for production.” As a first target, the agency had its eye on

“THE PEOPLE HERE ARE GOOD TO WORK WITH. THEY ARE PASSIONATE, INTELLIGENT AND HARDWORKING” DAVID BENIOFF City Of Ember (Gil Kenan, 2008), a film from Walden Media and Playtone Productions. “They were looking for a tall build space and Belfast’s Paint Hall had it. So we took on a lease and turned it into a fully functioning studio,” Lock says. NI Screen was successful in securing City Of Ember and used this as its calling card on a sales trip to the US. “We first met HBO in LA in 2008. We invited them over to show what Northern Ireland had to offer in terms of locations, The Paint Hall studio facility, plus our production funding support,” Lock says. The wooing of HBO continued on a return trip to LA that saw Northern Ireland’s First and Deputy First Ministers meet with channel executives. Agreement then came a significant stage closer when NI Screen was able to bring in Mark Huffam, a County Antrim-born and raised producer whose credit list includes Saving Private Ryan (1998), The Hours (2002) and Mamma Mia (2008). By April 2009, Lock says, NI Screen was able to reveal that Huffam would be producing a pilot of Game Of Thrones for HBO on home soil: “The pilot filmed here from Q3 2009. HBO returned in 2010 and filmed season one from July to Christmas 2010 and again from July to November 2011 for season two,” Lock says. The studio and the funding were key parts of the package. But the quality of Northern Ireland’s locations has also played a big part in the decision to base the production there. David Benioff, executive producer of Game Of Thrones and part of the creative team that adapted the books, says: “We scouted other countries — but they


Ireland has four main selling points: production funding, varied locations, talent crew and a state-of-the-art studio facility — The Paint Hall. The last of these is in the historically renowned Titanic Quarter of Belfast, where the component parts of ships were once painted in climate controlled conditions. It is a massive build-space — a fully functioning film studio complete with lights and rigging. Set on an eight-acre site, five minutes’

Emilia Clarke as Daenerys Targaryen ©HBO

didn’t look right. It’s hard to put your finger on it, but they looked too new. [For Game Of Thrones], you need to believe you are in a space that has been there for thousands of years, and you get that in the Irish forests.” Location manager Robert Boake agrees. Boake, a South African, became involved

drive from central Belfast, the building contains four 16,000ft2 (1,487m2) cells. These cells are set out in a square and connected by an internal road and streets. Each cell is 90ft (27.5m) tall and has one 3ft-thick external wall that is actually a 75ft-tall door. None of the cell ceilings is external and the building is double-skinned thereby reducing noise pollution. The facility also offers offices, toilets, five dedicated workshops, a green room and has its own internal electrical substation. Several interior scenes for Game

with Game Of Thrones having worked with Huffam on some of his earlier work. “The great thing about not being a local is that you look with the eyes of a tourist,” he says. “And what is really striking for me is that there is such a wide range of locations in Northern Ireland. Not only that, they’re close together. You can find spectacular

Of Thrones were shot inside The Paint Hall. Examples include Bran’s bedchamber, Winterfell’s feast hall and the High Hall at the Eyrie.


Ireland locations used include Audleys Tower, Strangford, Castle Ward in Co Down and the Antrim plateau and coastline. County Antrim provided the backdrop for Ned Stark’s execution of Gared the traitor, while the scene where the dire wolf pups were found

was in County Down in Tollymore Forest near Newcastle. Tollymore was also used for the opening scene of the first episode, which showed the kingdom north of The Wall. Also featuring in episode one were the Mourne Mountains. Castle Black, a watchtower on The Wall that is home to the Night Watch, was built in a disused quarry at Magheramore. King Robert’s arrival at Winterfell was filmed at the Castle Ward estate. Built in the 1760s, the estate features repeatedly throughout series one in a number of different guises.

Of course, just because you have found a beautiful place it doesn’t always follow that it will be easy to film there — particularly when you are dealing with a region that is reputed to see more rainfall than anywhere else in Europe. As Boake points out: “Beautiful places are often hard to get to and this is a big production. The production values are so high that the amount of things that need to be taken on location is more than in a lot of feature films. So the challenge was to get a unit of this size on top of mountains, under cliffs and out into the middle of swamps.� This is where Northern Ireland’s other great strength comes to the fore, Benioff says. “The people here are good to work with. They are passionate, intelligent and hardworking. The crews are incredible and working here is exciting and invigorating.� The local community has also been supportive. In June 2011 Boake was in Ballintoy Harbour, trying to persuade locals to give permission for Game Of Thrones to take over the town for a week during the summer season. “If you’re going to disrupt people’s businesses then it’s absolutely right that you get permission and think about how you’ll compensate them for their inconvenience. But I have to say that the Northern Irish population

has been very supportive of Game Of Thrones.� That enthusiasm looks set to deliver long-term rewards for locals too. NI Screen estimates that season one has benefited the Northern Ireland economy to the tune of around £20m ($32m). With season two about to air and season three scheduled to return to Northern Ireland for production, there’s optimism that Game Of Thrones will do for Northern Ireland tourism what Lord Of The Rings has done for New Zealand. There’s also a more specific upside for Northern Irish creative talent. Having come to realise just how good Northern Ireland’s production base is, HBO is reported to be back in the province with plans for a multi-million dollar drama about a British soldier infiltrating the IRA during the time of The Troubles. That, of course, will present unique challenges — but at least the sourcing of locations should be more straightforward. Game Of Thrones was created for HBO by David Benioff and D B Weiss. The cast includes Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister; Emilia Clarke as Daenerys Targaryen; Iain Glen as Ser Jorah Mormont; Maisie Williams as Arya Stark; and Alfie Allen as Theon Greyjoy. ANDY FRY


beauty in a quick car drive from (the capital) Belfast which makes it a superb place to film.� In the first series, Boake says, there was a big emphasis on rugged hills and ancient forests to act as a backdrop to Winterfell Castle — though it should be pointed out that some of the Winterfell scenes were shot at Doune Castle in Scotland. “There were also ruins on old estates which added to the sense of antiquity which is so important to the story’s setting.� Northern Ireland continued to deliver once the action expanded to include new settings, Boake says, citing the spectacular beach and coastal settings that were available once the series started to tackle seagoing adventures around The Iron Islands. “There were also some bonuses,� he says. “We found a few locations that worked for the warmer southern climates. We even found a place to double as African-style savannah.� Particularly compelling was that so many of the locations could be used with minimal interference from CGI. “You always think about what CGI can add. But it was a specific requirement in Game Of Thrones that the setting be based on real locations to get that sense of rugged, earthy authenticity. HBO didn’t want to be in a position where entire locations were CG-based.�


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How do branded products and services end up in movies? Who puts the stars in their cars and the beer at their barbecues? What are the benefits of product placement, how much does it cost and who controls what ultimately ends up on the screen?

N THE business of product placement it’s important to make a distinction between the steady pipeline of content coming out of Hollywood Studios, and the more piecemeal nature of independent film financing — the world in which European film producers typically operate. Where Hollywood is concerned, the existence of an ongoing slate of big budget productions means studios, brands and other stakeholders — ad agencies, media buyers, talent agents and product placement consultancies — can maintain a dialogue about product integration, confident in the knowledge that the film or films under discussion will get made and released. By contrast, product placement discussions in the independent sector are more fluid. With rare exceptions like Bridget Jones (a proven franchise, seen in 2001 and 2004) or The Inbetweeners Movie (2011) — a known quantity with a TV track record — a brand isn’t going to be actively interested in a specific film until the financing is in place to guarantee its viability. Even then, as the hold up with the third Bridget Jones has demonstrated, things don’t always work out as intended. Second: product placement doesn’t always come with cash attached. While there are a few high-profile exceptions (see panel), the offer on the table is usually free goods and services — plus some marketing muscle. In other words, it’s a way for producers to control costs and amplify investment, rather than to greenlight production. So next time you read that a car brand has invested $50m (£31m) in a Hollywood film, keep in mind that most of this is money used to leverage the partnership (making ads, buying airtime), not a contribution to the studio budget. Sarah Curran, business development director at Pinewoodbased product placement consultancy NMG, has worked with brands on a number of titles including, recently, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011), One Day (2011), Johnny English Reborn (2011), The Iron Lady (2011) and Prometheus (2012). She says exaggerated expectation is one of the mistakes producers make: “Some filmmakers, particularly the newer ones, think big brands have money to blow,” she says: “They don’t.” Curran says NMG gets inundated with scripts and enquiries from producers. And one of her first pieces of advice is to be clear about what the production has to offer: “Some producers underestimate the care marketers take,” she says. “Companies won’t do anything unless they are certain the production fits their brand criteria. Then they want to see the producer’s track record, the names of the cast and director and the likely release schedule. A film has little value for a brand if it doesn’t get a cinema release, even if going to DVD.” These tough criteria explain why some leading agencies don’t go near films. In 2008 Mark Wood, formerly head of sponsor-


ship at BSkyB set up Krempelwood with Blair Krempel, for the purpose of representing producers, rights owners and others in the media business, to brands. “We don’t work with movies because the brand doesn’t know upfront if it will end up as The King’s Speech (2010) or go straight to the DVD discount box in ASDA — or even worse, sometimes, on the cutting room floor as part of a discarded scene,” Wood says. “At least in TV you know the audience average of the timeslot and channel a show is being made for.” But assuming that film producers sometimes do have a project that appeals to brands, the next step for an agency like NMG is to identify specific opportunities in the script, and then to set up a contract covering what the brand will supply and how many visual and verbal references it will get. While this part of the process is managed and policed meticulously, Curran stresses that the goal is to find a creative connection. “Brands need to be noticed,” she says. “But we aren’t looking for intrusive product placements that draw the wrong reaction from audiences. Much better and more natural is the scene in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011) when Gary Oldman (as George Smiley) is holding a bottle of Diageo’s Johnnie Walker Black Label; or the scene in Inside Man (2006) when Denzel Washington leaves a Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit wrapper in a safe deposit box. The brand is very visible but it has a natural role to play as a clue within the narrative.” The process described by Curran isn’t that different in Hollywood, though the higher volume of movie production means that professionalism on the brand side is generally matched by professionalism on the studio side. This has given rise to companies like Hollywood Branded, a product placement consultancy that works on behalf of both sides, via two divisions — Productions Branded and Hollywood Branded. On the studio side, says company co-founder Stacy Jones, a typical task would be when Productions Branded was called in by Paramount Pictures to oversee all product placement and brand integration for the film No Strings Attached (2011), starring Ash-

“PRODUCTION WAS ALREADY UNDER WAY AND WE ARRANGED ADDITIONAL FILMING TO ACCOMMODATE THE BRAND” CHARLIE COLEMAN ton Kutcher and Natalie Portman. “When a production company hires us, we focus on four main areas: props, set, wardrobe and transportation,” Jones says. “We’ll break down the script and look for all the ways in which we can generate savings.” The value of such activity can run into “hundreds of thousands of dollars”, Jones says. “It’s not just the products, but the servicing. Think of the labour costs involved in running a fleet of cars during a major movie production, for example.” Why, though, would a studio like Paramount use an agency rather its own production resources team? “Sometimes, they might do that,” Jones says. “But one reason for working with us is logistics. No studio wants to be left with all of the product afterwards — so our role is about much more than sourcing — it’s about shipping, servicing, stock management and so on.” Productions can also take advantage of an agency’s expertise in building relationships with brands, Jones says. “It’s what we do all the time. We represent clients like Beam Global, BlackBerry, Morgan Motors and Philips and see about 500 scripts a year. It is not a reactive business and it is not only about product placement — it’s about the wider benefits. If a brand can help raise the profile of a film during its launch, it is adding value to the studio’s marketing dollars.” The movie industry product placement bible is Brandchannel’s Brandcameo, which charts all references to products and services in films. Its research shows Apple-branded products are most used, having appeared in more than one-third of all number one films at US box office between 2001 and 2011 (129 of 374). Other brands that get a lot of screen time include Dell, Chevrolet, Ford, Cadillac, Coca-Cola and Mercedes-Benz. The most sophisticated examples of brand integration come q


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Johnny Depp as Jack Sparrow in Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. ŠDisney Enterprises Inc. All Rights Reserved


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Tron: Legacy, starring Jeff Bridges and the Nokia N8

q around blockbusters, which do anything between 25 and 70 deals with brands. The biggest deals involve brands wanting a relationship that goes well beyond on-screen product placement. Although this doesn’t necessarily mean there is any money for production, it’s still important as a way of offsetting the market budget. The bigger the brand marketing budget, the more exposure for the film during its launch phase. Technology brands like LG and Nokia are particularly valuable because of target audience and second-screen distribution capabilities. While brands don’t want to be associated with the wrong film, there’s no question media fragmentation has moved product placement up their agenda — particularly when it features as part of a multi-tiered campaign backed by robust evaluation. Propaganda Gem, another leader in this field, recently secured BMW a key role in Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol (2011). Propaganda Gem’s role was not just to get BMW in the film, but to activate the partnership in the way a sponsor might leverage its rights around a sports competition or a music event. Starting with a clear marketing objective, Propaganda Gem negotiated 360-degree rights which allowed BMW to rollout a $10m global strategy involving TV ads, PR, dealership events, auto shows and digital. Of course, not every film producer in search of a brand backhander can offer this kind of communications platform. But it doesn’t do them any harm to know what the big players can provide. Charlie Coleman, general manager, promotions, Walt Disney Company EMEA, and a member of marketing team Disneymedia+ says: “We’re not going to harm the creative credibility of our output. But with that proviso we are very flexible in terms of brand partnerships.” Coleman says there is now a seamless line of communication between production in Burbank California and his division in London: “We played a key role in integrating the Nokia N8 into Tron Legacy (2010). The central character used the device to hack a security system,” he says. “In fact, that was a situation where the production was already under way and we arranged additional filming to accommodate the brand. Generally we say talk to us the earlier the better — but this showed our flexibility.” Indeed, Coleman says Disney has moved away from thinking purely about what happens on screen. “If a brand comes to us thinking it wants to be involved in a film we might show it a better way of achieving its goals via our pay-TV channels. Or if there’s a film where placement is clearly inappropriate, we might arrange an off-air marketing partnership, as we did with (car brand) Seat and Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011).” Producers could try to value placement in their films with some

kind of airtime equivalent measurement — but the fact is that price is contingent on many factors. These include popularity of the brand, nature of the product on offer, movie budget, movie genre, behind-the-camera talent, position of the placement on screen, location of the placement, significance to the plot, proximity to the main actors, category exclusivity, number of references, and the plans for the movie’s marketing. At this level, partnerships become complex — with studios talking to brands and their agencies at a very strategic level. So for smaller producers making their first foray into product placement, the specialist consultancies are a better place to kick-start conversations. That said, producers on a very tight budget should never rule out talking to businesses in the vicinity of their location. Some local firms will be happy to provide goods and services in return for the ability to say they featured in a film. Movies and television can also serve to market destinations. The National Trust (NT), which protects and opens to the public many historic houses and gardens throughout the UK, has hosted film productions for years — recent examples being Harry Potter


(2010), John Carter (2012), The Young Victoria (2009), and The Awakening (2011). But only in the last couple of years has it centralised the process, says Harvey Edgington, NT broadcast & media liaison manager. “We now have a Location Managers’ Guide which provides all the information you need,” he says. “Lots of people know about our historic properties, but this alerts them to the Trust’s amazing countryside and coastlines as well as farms and industrial sites.” The message is that the NT is able to host a lot more than just the costume dramas that sit perfectly in its many period homes — though that of course remains important. “We’re best known for productions like Pride & Prejudice (2005) but we’ve also provided locations for Ridley Scott’s Robin Hood (2010) and Tim Burton’s Alice In Wonderland (2010). Looking ahead, Osterley park, between London and Heathrow Airport, is playing a role in Christopher Nolan’s new Batman film The Dark Knight Rises.” While Edgington is providing a locations service, he says that there is also a product placement angle for the Trust. “There’s no question that venues which feature in films see increased at-


the BmW i8 concept as seen in mission: Impossible - Ghost protocol

tendance. When antony House in cornwall featured in alice In Wonderland, annual visits rose from 23,000 to 100,000. that’s good for the venue and for overall membership.” this kind of co-marketing is becoming more common. For example, VisitScotland, Scotland’s tourism organisation, and the Walt disney company emea have joined forces to promote Scottish tourism around disney pixar film Brave (2012), which is set in the Scottish Highlands and features Scottish voice talent. the partnership is the first time disney has teamed up on this scale with a tourist organisation around the launch of a film. according to VisitScotland, the partners will create a campaign which includes joint tV and cinema advertising across the uK, north

a new agreement between the uS and china means more Hollywood and uS independent films will be released in mainland china. this is expected to trigger a flurry of new product placement deals as brands target the chinese market. not that product placement is completely new in china. transformers: dark of the moon (2011) — a big box office hit in china — has already made the chevrolet camaro a big hit in china. color me love (2010) features apple, diesel, cartier and Versace. transformers: dark of the moon is also interesting for the fact that it was used to market chinese brands to the uS market. Branded entertainment firm norm marshall associates secured deals which put lenovo, meters/Bonwe, tcl and Yili milk in the film. then there are the opportunities offered by digital technology — virtual product placement, for example. already the tV business is being transformed by technologies like mirriad, which allows broadcasters such as Seven network in australia to “place brands digitally into top-rated shows and long running series.” although mirriad has mainly been used by broadcasters so far, its benefits to the film business are self-evident. Firstly, it means brands can delay their decision-making until they know if a film is likely to shape up as a hit. Secondly, it allows studios to do deals on a territory by territory basis, only offering brands the markets they really want. there’s even room to do retrospective deals, perhaps inserting brands into films that have proved to be evergreens on dVd and pay-tV channels. In its april 2012 blog, mirriad argues: “as the popularity of insertion grows, it won’t be long before Hollywood et al produces its films with product placement in mind from the earliest stages. Films will be designed specifically to support digital post-production product placement, by providing the actors with items (such as soft drink cans) in solid colours, making it a simple process to overdub a brand on.” ANDY FRY


VOlVO AND TwilighT Volvo got lucky when author Stephanie meyer made vampire hearthrob edward cullen drive a Volvo in her first twilight novel. Subsequently, the Swedish car brand has worked with Summit entertainment to promote a new model in each film. In Breaking dawn - part 1 (2011) cullen drives a saville grey metallic Volvo S60 t6 r-design. the campaign was backed by online competitions to win a Volvo and a trip to the house where edward and Bella spent their honeymoon.

gM AND TRANSfORMERS General motors vehicles sit right at the heart of the transformers story, which sees robots disguised as motor vehicles. Gm’s product placement was backed by activation across toys, posters, video games, tV ads and dealer promotions. there was an element of good fortune here in that director michael Bay wanted iconic Gm vehicles in the film. hEiNEkEN & JAMES BOND 007 Heineken has worked with the Bond franchise for 15 years — and the Sam mendes-directed movie Skyfall (2012) will see the British agent take a swig of its beer. cyril charzat, senior director Global Heineken Brand, says the Bond franchise is “perfectly in line with the man-of-the-world positioning we have developed during our current marketing strategy open

lawsuit seeking damages and is also demanding the studio surrender all copies of the film.

Your World”. a key part of the partnership will see Bond actor daniel craig appear in a Wieden+Kennedy-produced tV commercial. mGm’s Skyfall is reputed to have raised nearly £30m through product placement.

hANgOVER PART ii AND lOuiS VuiTTON a cautionary tale that shows how protective brands can be about their image… In Warner Bros.’ hit comedy Hangover part II, one of the central characters has a counterfeit louis Vuitton bag. the French luxury brand was so outraged by this that it has filed a

SEx AND ThE CiTy 2 AND hP this deal got tongues wagging because the central character carrie (Sarah Jessica parker) used a mac throughout the tV series and the first film. critics argued that mac was part of her character profile and that the decision to sign up with Hp for the movie sequel was too intrusive.

59 FEATURE product placement

america and europe, pr opportunities, digital marketing and events including premieres and screenings that will continue through the film’s home entertainment release. VisitScotland chairman mike cantlay explains: “the film will be shown in 70 countries and will give us the opportunity to convert cinemagoers into visitors. It is an unprecedented opportunity to put us on the world stage.”


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PARADE’s End, the adaptation of Ford Madox Ford’s four-book collection, centres around Christopher Tietjens — described as “an officer and a gentleman” and “the last English Tory” — as his secure, orderly world of Edwardian England is disrupted by the First World War, in which he serves. For Sir Tom Stoppard, the business of adapting quite a complex set of novels was relatively painless. “Very wisely they reserved comment until I had delivered all five episodes,” he says. “They just expressed pleasure, which gives one a bit of a boost. I think a lot of writers are conditioned now, and getting quite used to having a director looking over their shoulder during the process, which I find hard to deal with.” “In film there are certainly too many executives,” David Parfitt says. “But it’s about finance. If you are in a position where you can self-fund development it’s a much smoother process because obviously you are trying to please different masters all the time where there are different financiers. I’ve been in situations where there’s endless development, and things that start out being quite promising, just get lost in the notes.” The Oscar-winning Shakespeare In Love (1998) team has enjoyed the process of telling the story across a five-hour TV series as opposed to a two-hour film. “I’m having lots of people now saying ‘Aren’t you lucky to have moved across onto Parade’s End, what a fantastic break!’” Parfitt says. Stoppard would normally have been working on one of his own plays during this writing period, so the series took on a different dimension. “I did [Parade’s End] instead of a play and I was thinking of it as a play. I felt the kind of attachment and identity with Parade’s End, and a sort of possessiveness about it and a protection towards it, which I normally only feel for my plays. It’s partly because the novel doesn’t lend itself easily to a series of dramatic scenes which fall nicely, build nicely, and turn corners nicely. It’s a marvellous novel but I had to invent an enormous amount of stuff in order to contain what Ford was describing and paraphrasing. So I still now feel a degree of authorship. I’m really glad I did it… it was kind of at the expense of having written another play by now.” Stoppard was also producer on the series and, unusually for the prolific writer, he got totally wrapped up in the production. “I’ve never gone to the shoot of a movie,” he says. “I’ve done my sort of tourist visit — but really, I’ve barely ever been there for the shoot. With Brazil [Terry Gilliam’s 1985 surreal odyssey with screenplay by Stoppard] I went for one day in the hope that I would at least see Robert De Niro. But since he had a balaclava on I’m not sure I ever did! Shakespeare In Love — one day, maybe, two. But with Parade’s End I went on location every day I possibly could, even when the

location was in Belgium, which it was for seven weeks. And I really resented missing a day’s shooting.” The complete shoot was 17 weeks and Stoppard was on set for more than half of that time. “Being on the set is kind of your chance to see that the production is making the right noise.” The five-part series Parade’s End moves from the glittering world of London high society to the bloody battlefields of France; filming took place in the UK and Belgium. The production chose Duncombe Park, near Helmsley, North Yorkshire, for the stately home inhabited by Tietjens and his beautiful, but unfaithful, wife. The Baroque mansion, completed in 1713, has a contemporary story worthy of its own mini-series. It is home to the Duncombe family and is managed by Jake Duncombe, second son of Lord Feversham — who on his death left the house to Jake and his second wife, after disinheriting his eldest son, ‘porn baron’ Jasper Duncombe. JULIAN NEWBY

• Parade’s End, starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Rebecca Hall as Christopher and Sylvia Tietjens, is a co-production with the BBC and US cable TV network HBO, and premieres on BBC Two in the UK in the fourth quarter of 2012. Distributor is BBC Worldwide


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Benedict Cumberbatch and Rebecca Hall star as Christopher and Sylvia Tietjens in Parade’s End

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100 Broadway, Salford Quays, MediaCityUK Salford M50 2UW

73 Berwick Street, London W1F 8TE + 44 (0) 207 287 1111

Shepperton and Pinewood Studios (camera rental & edit rental) Pinewood Rd Iver Heath Bucks SL0 0NH +44 (0) 20 7637 0888

Pinewood Studios Pinewood Rd Iver Heath Bucks SL0 0NH +44 (0) 1753 630202

Alfred House 21 Alfred Street, Belfast County Antrim BT2 8ED +44 (0) 28 9023 2444

ONSIGHT Pinewood Studios Pinewood Rd Iver Heath Bucks SL0 0NH +44 (0) 1753 656248 8-12 Broadwick Street London W1

BALTIC Centre, South Shore Rd, Gateshead NE8 3BA +44 (0)191 269 9212


Somerset House London WC2R 1LA +44 (0) 20 7845 4600





62-64+c_Mise en page 1 03/05/12 12:18 Page64


location uk IN PICTURES


WEMBLEY STADIUM The new Wembley Stadium, in northeast London, re-opened its doors in 2007 having been completely rebuilt. It is home to the England football team and all major national football matches, including the semi-final and final of the national football competition, the FA Cup. It also hosts big-name rock concerts. The original Wembley Stadium was known as the Empire Stadium, and was built as the centrepiece of the British Empire Exhibition at the end of the First World War and hosted its first FA Cup Final in 1923, the year before its official opening by King George V. In Tom Hooper's 2010 film The King's Speech, Prince Albert, Duke of York (Colin Firth), the second son of King George V, is seen stammering through his speech closing the 1925 British Empire Exhibition at Wembley Stadium. The new Wembley Stadium receives regular requests for filming changing rooms, the players’ tunnel, stadium seating, large internal and external concourses, corporate boxes, its internal service road, kitchens and large-scale escalators and stairwells. Filming applications can be made at (Photo, courtesy Wembley Stadium)


ADVERTISERS INDEX ARRI MEDIA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .50 BLACK HANGER STUDIOS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .22 BRITISH FILM COMMISSION . . .INSIDE FRONT COVER CREATIVE ENGLAND . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .43 CREATIVE SCOTLAND . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14 CREATIVE SKILLSET . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .11 ELSTREE FILM STUDIOS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 FILM LONDON . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6 HARBOTTLE AND LEWIS . . . . . . . . . .INSIDE BACK COVER HIGHLANDS OF SCOTLAND FILM COMMISSION . . . .24 ITASCA LOCATIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .55 KENT FILM OFFICE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .50 MANDARIN ORIENTAL HOTEL GROUP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .62 NATIONAL TRUST . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15 NORTHERN ISLAND SCREEN .OUTSIDE BACK COVER ONSIGHT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5 PINEWOOD STUDIOS GROUP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 RSM TENON . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .INSIDE BACK COVER UNITBASE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .46 WIMBLEDON FILM AND TELEVISION STUDIOS . . . . .20

III_Mise en page 1 03/05/12 15:44 PageIII

“Stands out for its invaluable in-depth knowledge of both the film and television industry” Legal 500 2011 Lawyers for the film and TV industry Film Production

Film Finance

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For further information please contact Peter Armstrong or Jonathan Berger by email on / or by calling +44 (0)20 7667 5000 Harbottle & Lewis LLP Hanover House, 14 Hanover Square, London W1S 1HP Tel: +44 (0)20 7667 5000 Fax: +44 (0)20 7667 5100

We are proud to be supporting the British Film Commission

RSM Tenon is one of the most progressive and entrepreneurial professional services firms in the UK today, offering a wide range of services: „ „ „ „ „

Film Finance Film Structure and Advice Film Audits and Statutory Accounts Film Taxation Advice and Compliance Advice on International and Domestic Subsidy

For further information contact John Graydon: Tel: +44 (0)20 7535 1400 Email: RSM Tenon Limited is a member of RSM Tenon Group PLC. RSM Tenon Group PLC is an independent member of the RSM International network. The RSM International network is a network of independent accounting and consulting firms each of which practices in its own right. RSM International is the brand used by the network which is not itself a separate legal entity in any jurisdiction. RSM Tenon Limited (No 4066924) is registered in England and Wales. Registered Office 66 Chiltern Street, London W1U 4GB. England. MLK29410412

have you discovered magnetic north?

“A cinematic texture was essential … all hail Northern Ireland, the new New Zealand”

Ian Nathan, Empire Magazine

“Rural, mist-shrouded spots that have seen Belfast and its surrounding area become a favoured location”


attractions  The Paint Hall studio and two new sound stages in Belfast  The Linen Mill studios in a 32-acre rural setting  Diverse locations in the most compact 5,196 sq miles of back-lot in the world  A

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19/04/2012 11:20

Location UK 2012  

Location UK showcasing the UK film production industry.

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