Little Dorrit (2008)

The Cast of Little Dorrit

The Cast of Little Dorrit © BBC

Directed By: Adam Smith, Dearbhla Walsh & Diarmuid Lawrence

Written By: Charles Dickens (Novel) & Andrew Davies (Adaptation)

Starring: Clare Foy, Matthew Macfadyen, Tom Courtenay, Amanda Redman & Mackenzie Crook.

Production Company:

Kent Locations Used: Deal Castle

Pet Gowan (Georgia King) and Arthur Clennam (Matthew Macfadyen at Marseilles market

Pet Gowan (Georgia King) and Arthur Clennam (Matthew Macfadyen) in Marseilles © BBC

Writer Andrew Davies achieved success with his adaptation of the Dickens’ classic Bleak House in 2005. Now the BBC has commissioned him to bring another Dickens tale to life, this time it was the  bard’s eleventh novel, Little Dorrit.

The novel was originally published over 19 monthly instalments between 1855 and 1857 and Davies’ adaptation tried to mirror this by creating 14 half hour episodes. First shown on BBC One over the festive period in 2008, it can now be purchased on DVD.

The series boasts an all star cast with appearances from Clare Foy (Upstairs, Downstairs) in the title role,  Matthew McFadden (Pride and Prejudice), Freema Agyeman (Doctor Who), Amanda Redman (New Tricks) and Kent’s very own Mackenzie Crook (The Office).

Maxine Peake, Freema Agyeman, Amanda Redman and Anton Lesser wearing period costumes standing in a street

Maxine Peake, Freema Agyeman, Amanda Redman and Anton Lesser in Little Dorrit © BBC

Telling the tale of young Amy Dorrit, known to those around her as Little Dorrit, who lives with her father in Marshalsea Debtors Prison in London, Dickens hoped to highlight the shortcomings of government and society at the time.  With the arrival of young Arthur Clenham, a business man returning to the family home after an extended stay in China, Amy Dorrit finds her whole world turned upside down. Hindered by the poorly run Circumlocution Office, Clenham begins an investigation into the secret his elderly mother is hiding and hopes to restore the Dorrit family’s wealth.

The production visited Deal Castle in April 2008 to film scenes set in Marseilles. Many locals were confronted with the strange sight of a French flag flying high over the Tudor fortress. The castle itself was transformed into a traditional Moroccan market, complete with aromatic spices, bright cloth and exotic birds in elaborate Victorian cages.

A fan of the Kentish Coast, Charles Dickens often spent time in the county’s popular seaside towns. From his summer residence in Broadstairs he would often enjoy “a walk of ten miles” to Deal, “a seaside town with no cliff”. He wrote about Deal in his novel Bleak House, where he set the temporary home of Richard Carstone, one of the wards in the case of Jarndyce and Jarndyce, who was visited by Esther Summerson.

It was also in Broadstairs that Dickens found inspiration for one of his most famous characters, that of Betsey Trotwood in David Copperfield. In what is now The Dickens House Museum, there lived a woman named Miss Mary Pearson who would often entertain Dickens with her belief that she had the right to stop donkeys from crossing the front of her cottage. It was this peculiarity that would find its way into David Copperfield.

Deal Castle is a Tudor castle built by the order of King Henry VIII located on the seafront. The Deal area has previously had filming from The Tunnel: Sabotage (2016), Antiques Roadshow (2015) and Legacy (2013).

The first hour long episode aired on Sunday 26th October 2008 at 8pm on BBC1 and is now available to buy on DVD.

Little Dorrit also features in the Kent Film Office Dickens Trail which lauched in 2012: http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/kent-movie-map/dickens-movie-trail/ 

Links

For more information about filming in Kent please contact: filmoffice@kent.gov.uk

For more information about the programme: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00fcm3b

For more information about Deal Castle: http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/daysout/properties/deal-castle/

For more information about Broadstairs: http://www.visitkent.co.uk/explore/thedms.asp?dms=13&venue=3201209

For more information about the Kent Film Office Dickens Trail: http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/moviemap/dickens-movie-trail/

MMFor more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map: http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/kent-movie-map/moviemap-live-2/


Oliver Twist (2007)

 

Oliver Twist, Fagin, Nancy and Sykes standing in a street

Oliver Twist, Fagin, Nancy and Sykes © BBC

 

Directed By: Coky Giedroyc

Produced By: Kate Harwood, Sarah Brown & Coky Giedroyc

Written By: Charles Dickens (Novel) & Sarah Phelps (Adaptation)

Starring: Timothy Spall, William Miller, Adam Arnold, Tom Hardy, Sophie Okenedo, Rob Brydon

Production Company: BBC, WGBH

Kent Filming Locations: The Historic Dockyard Chatham

In the latest adaptation of Dickens’ Classic tale, the story of young orphan Oliver Twist is faithfully recreated by the BBC whilst delivering a modern and thrilling edge that is sure to entice audiences.

After the death of his mother, Oliver Twist (William Miller) is thrown into poverty and misfortune. Left to the mercy of the workhouse, he is routinely tormented with cruelty and starvation by the local Beadle, Mr. Bumble, and the workhouse employees.  When daring to ask for more food, Oliver is famously cast out of the orphanage and must make his own way in the world.

After narrowly escaping the clutches of his new guardians, owners of a local funeral parlor, Oliver walks the many miles to London. On arriving in the city he is found by the Artful Dodger (Adam Arnold), a pickpocket and the most senior of Fagin’s (Timothy Spall) gang. Experiencing kindness for the first time in the form of the beautiful Nancy (Sophie Okenado), girlfriend to the villainous Bill Sykes (Tom Hardy), Oliver is soon drawn in to the darker and seedier side of life in Victorian London.

Oliver Twist (Otherwise known as The Parish Boy’s Progress) is the second novel of renowned author Charles Dickens. Noted for its unromantic portrayal of criminals in London, the novel exposed the cruel treatment of children during the time.  The novel has been the subject for many adaptations on stage and screen, the most famous being Carol Reed’s musical Oliver! starring Ron Moody as Fagin and Oliver Reed as Bill Sykes.

Directed by Coky Giedroyc (Carrie’s War, Stella Does Tricks) and adapted by Sarah Phelps (EastEnders, The Casual Vacancy), starring Timothy Spall (The King’s Speech, Mr. Turner), William Miller (Runaway, The Kid), Adam Arnold (Hibernation, The Bill), Tom Hardy (Inception, Locke), Sophie Okenedo (After Earth, Hotel Rwanda) and Rob Brydon (Black Books, Gavin & Stacey)

Kent welcomed the production when it was filmed in 2007 to The Historic Dockyard Chatham which was the location used to shoot one of the most famous lines of Dickens’ literary history “Please Sir, I want some more”.  The Tarred Yarn Store at The Historic Dockyard Chatham is a Grade II listed building and was used to recreate the famous workhouse scene in the film.

The Historic Dockyard Chatham is a popular film location, having previously welcomed productions such as The Golden Compass (2007), The Mummy (1999) and The World Is Not Enough (1999).

Charles Dickens’ father, who was the inspiration for the character of Mr Micawber in David Copperfield, worked at The Historic Dockyard Chatham as a clerk in the Naval Pay Office from 1817 to 1822. The young Dickens would often accompany his father on trips downriver from Chatham to Sheerness on the Naval Pay Yacht “Chatham”. This inspired Dickens and instilled in him a love for the sea and rivers which would later feature in some of his novels.

First shown in 2007 in five episodes on BBC1, this adaptation is now available on DVD.

Links

For more information about filming in Kent please contact: filmoffice@kent.gov.uk

For more information about the programme: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b008m6b8

For more information about The Historic Dockyard Chatham:http://www.thedockyard.co.uk/Home

MMFor more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map: http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/kent-movie-map/moviemap-live-2/


The Riddle (2007)

The Riddle Movieposter

The Riddle Movieposter ©  Image Entertainment

Director and writer: Brendan Foley

Starring: Vinnie Jones, Julie Cox, Jason Flemyng, Derek Jacobi, P.H. Moriarty, Vanessa Redgrave

Production Company: Grosvenor Park Productions, Manuscript Productions, Riddle Productions

Kent Filming Locations: Sittingbourne Greyhounds Racing Track

Journalist Mike Sullivan (Vinnie Jones) investigates a series of murders that occur after the discovery of an unpublished Charles Dickens’ manuscript. As Sullivan grows obsessive over the novel and its connection to his investigation, he seeks the help of police officer Kate (Julie Cox) and a beach-combing tramp  (Derek Jocobi) who together unravel a century-old crime hidden within the manuscript which enables them to solve the modern-day crime.

Brendan Foley’s latest project stars Vinnie Jones (Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels), Derek Jacobi (Gladiator), Vanessa Redgrave (Atonement) Julie Cox (David Copperfield) and Jason Flemyng (Snatch)

The Riddle production team visited Sittingbourne Greyhounds Racing Track to shoot the opening sequence of the film where sports tabloid journalist Mike Sullivan (Vinnie Jones) is reporting on a dog race. What fans may not know is that Jones has been known to race his own greyhound, Smoking Bullet, at the stadium!

Sittingbourne falls under the district of Swale and The Riddle isn’t the only filming project to visit the district. Brogdale Farm in Faversham saw The Hairy Bikers visit in 2009 and the Shepherd Neame Brewery featured in The Darling Buds of May series.

Another location to feature was the Chislehurst Caves in Bromley as they were the perfect location to act as the home to Derek Jacobi’s beach combing tramp.  Chislehurst Caves has over 200 miles of caverns dug over a period of 8000 years and three distinct sections, Druid, Roman and Saxon and has also been used in filming for Doctor Who in 1976 and more recently for BBC’s Merlin.

The film was released in cinemas in September 2007 and is now available on DVD.

Links

For more information about filming in Kent please contact: filmoffice@kent.gov.uk

For more information about Central Park Stadium and Dog Track: http://www.sittingbournegreyhounds.co.uk/

For more information about Chislehurst Caves: http://www.chislehurst-caves.co.uk/index.html

MMFor more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map: http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/kent-movie-map/moviemap-live-2/


Bleak House (2005)

Bleak House filming at Cobham Hall - Gillian Anderson as Lady Dedlock and Anna Maxwell Martin as Esther

Bleak House filming at Cobham Hall © BBC and Terry Curran

Written By: Charles Dickens (Novel) & Andrew Davies (Adaptation)

Starring: Gillian Anderson, Ana Maxwell Martin, Carey Mulligan, Charles Dance, Patrick Kennedy & Denis Lawson

Production Company: BBC, WGBH, Deep Indigo Productions, Smallweed Productions

Kent Locations Used: Cobham Hall

This BBC A dramatic thriller set in Victorian England. It tells the story of the beautiful but icy Lady Dedlock (Gillian Anderson). Nursing a dark secret in her past, her merciless lawyer Tulkinghorn seeks to uncover it.

Running parallel to the central story, the generous John Jarndyce struggles with his own past and takes in two young wards Richard (Patrick Kennedy) and Ada (Carey Mulligan). Like the infamous Lady Dedlock, all three are caught up in the case of Jarndyce Vs Jarndyce, a court case many years long that is yet to be resolved. When it is, the winning party will be rich beyond all imagination.

The two young wards are accompanied by Esther Summerson (Ana Maxwell Martin), a woman of questionable background. Told she will never amount to anything, is she the key to Lady Dedlock’s secret?

First published in 1852, the novel was released in 19 instalments. To mirror Dickens’ original dramatic storyline and typical cliff-hanger endings, the TV adaptation was comprised of a one hour opening episode with subsequent 30 minute programmes lasting for 14 episodes. The programme was shown twice weekly in 2005 on BBC 1 and is now available to buy on DVD.

Behind the scenes filming of Bleak House at Cobham Hall - courtyard with people and horse and carriage

Behind the scenes filming of Bleak House at Cobham Hall © Terry Curran

 

Behind the scenes filming of Bleak House at Cobham Hall - house with crew and a horse

Behind the scenes filming of Bleak House at Cobham Hall © Terry Curran

Behind the scenes filming of Bleak House at Cobham Hall gardens

Behind the scenes filming of Bleak House at Cobham Hall gardens © Terry Curran

Gillian Anderson as Lady Dedlockk at Cobham Hall

Gillian Anderson as Lady Dedlockk at Cobham Hall © Terry Curran

The BBC adaption stars Gillian Anderson (The Fall, Johnny English Reborn), Ana Maxwell Martin (Becoming Jane, Philomena), Carey Mulligan (The Great Gatsby, Suffragette), Charles Dance (The Imitation Game, Ghostbusters), Patrick Kennedy (Atonement, War Horse) and Denis Lawson (New Tricks, Broken).

Cobham Hall is a private boarding school near to Gravesend located in 150 acres of Grade II listed parkland. The interiors boast a stunning ball room, library, cobbled courtyards, formal gardens, classrooms as well as sports facilities, including a swimming pool. Cobham Hall is a popular film location having previously been used for Hetty Feather series 1-2 (2012), The Great Fire (2014) and Wild Child (2008).

Bleak House features in the Kent Film Office Dickens Trail which was laucnhed in 2012: http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/kent-movie-map/dickens-movie-trail/

Bleak House was shown on the BBC in 2005 and is now available to buy on DVD.

Links

For more information about filming in Kent, please contact: filmoffice@kent.gov.uk

For more information about the programme: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b007z7jx

For more behind the scenes pictures: http://brochures.moviesite.biz/view/kent/Behind_the_Scenes_of_Bleak_House_at_Cobham_Hall.html

For more information about Cobham Hall: http://www.cobhamhall.com/

For more information about the Kent Film Office Dickens Trail: http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/kent-movie-map/dickens-movie-trail/

MMFor more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map: http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/kent-movie-map/moviemap-live-2/


Our Mutual Friend (1998)

Eugene Wrayburn (Paul McGann) and Mortimer Lightwood (Dominic Mafham) wearing blankets amongst a collection of old wooden boats on teh dockyard

Eugene Wrayburn (Paul McGann) and Mortimer Lightwood (Dominic Mafham) © BBC

Directed by: Julian Farino

Produced By: Caroline Wearing

Written By: Charles Dickens (Novel) & Sandy Welch (Adaptation)

Starring: Keeley Hawes, Paul McGann, Anna Friel, David Morrissey & Steven Mackintosh

Production Company: BBC

Kent Locations Used: The Historic Dockyard Chatham, River Medway

Our Mutual Friend was Charles Dickens’ last complete novel. It was written in 1864-1865 when he was at the height of his fame having recently published A Tale of Two Cities and Great Expectations. The main theme of the novel is money and the effect that it can have on personal values and relationships.  At it’s very core is the love triangle between repressed schoolteacher Bradley Headstone (David Morrissey Thorne: Sleepyhead), his rival Eugene Wrayburn (Paul McGann New Tricks)and their shared love interest Lizzie Hexam (Keeley Hawes Upstairs Downstairs).

When  John Harmon, a young man whose inheritance is dependent on his marrying a woman he has never met, is found dead in the Thames, his fortune is passed onto the Boffin family who take both Harmon’s would-be bride Bella Wilfer (Anna Friel Pushing Daisies) and mysterious secretary Rokesmith (Steven Mackintosh Camelot) into their home. Meanwhile, Lizzie Hexam’s father is accused of Harmon’s murder and she is relentlessly pursued by her two suitors.

Lizzie Hexam (Keeley Hawes) in a hooded cape in a boat on the medway. A close up of her face with the water behind her and the boat lanten.

Lizzie Hexam (Keeley Hawes) © BBC

Filmed at The Historic Dockyard Chatham, the location was used for the bleak side streets surrounding the workhouse. Charles Dickens’ father worked as a Naval Pay Officer at the Dockyard and it was here that Dickens developed a love of the sea, accompanying his father as a young boy. Later, these childhood adventures were a source of inspiration for novels such as Great Expectations and Our Mutual Friend.

The Kingswear Castle Paddlesteamer that is based at The Historic Dockyard Chatham was also used for filming the scene where Bella Wilfer and the Boffin family go for a day out.

The Historic Dockyard Chatham dates back to the 17th century and contains over 100 buildings from the Georgian and Victorian periods. The Historic Dockyard Chatham is a popular film location that has previously featured on screen in Suffragette (2015), Downton Abbey (2013) and Les Miserables (2013).

Dickens has a rich history with Kent and the Kent Film Office celebrates Dickens history with the county including TV and film adaptions in The Dickens Trail which launched in 2012.

Our Mutual Friend aired on the BBC in March 1998 and is now available on DVD.

Links

For more information on filming in Kent please contact: filmoffice@kent.gov.uk

For more information about the Kent Film Office Dickens Trail: http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/moviemap/dickens-movie-trail/

For more information about the programme:  http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0144727/

For more information about The Historic Dockyard Chatham: http://www.thedockyard.co.uk/

 

MMFor more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map: http://kentfilmoffice.co.uk/kent-movie-map/moviemap-live-2/