The Lady in the Van (2015)

The Lady In The Van - Dame Maggie Smith as Miss Shepherd being pushed in a wheelchair by Alex Jennings as Alan Bennett

The Lady In The Van – Dame Maggie Smith as Miss Shepherd and Alex Jennings as Alan Bennett © Sony

Writer: Alan Bennett

Director: Nicholas Hytner

Starring: Maggie Smith, Alex Jennings, Dominic Cooper, James Corden, Jim Broadbent, Frances de la Tour

Production company: BBC Films, TriStar Productions

Kent Locations: Broadstairs – High Street, Esplanade, Harbour Street, Viking Bay Beach,  Morellis Gelato, Buckmaster House

The Lady in the Van is British film based on the true story about a homeless woman, Miss Shepherd (Maggie Smith), who temporarily parked her old yellow van on the driveway of writer Alan Bennett (Alex Jennings) in the 1970’s. As fifteen years went by, the pair developed an endearing but sometimes turbulent relationship, which translates into a funny, poignant and life-affirming story.

Adapted by Alan Bennett (The History Boys, A Private Function, Prick Up Your Ears) from his memoir of the same name, the film is directed by Nicholas Hytner (The Crucible, The Object of My Affection, Center Stage).

Maggie Smith (Downton Abbey, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, Gosford Park) stars as Miss Shepherd with Alex Jennings (The Queen, Babel, Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason) playing Alan Bennett.

Also starring is Dominic Cooper (Mamma Mia!, Need for Speed, Captain America: The First Avenger), James Corden (Begin Again, Into the Woods, The History Boys), Jim Broadbent (Moulin Rouge!, Cloud Atlas, Gangs of New York) and Frances de la Tour (Hugo, The Book of Eli, Alice in Wonderland).

In November 2014, The Lady in the Van production team came to Kent to film in Broadstairs including the High Street, Esplanade, Harbour Street, Viking Bay Beach and http://www.morellisgelato.com/ for the scenes where Miss Shepherd (Maggie Smith) visits the coast. Buckmaster House in Broadstairs also doubled as Weston-Super-Mare for the scenes where Alan Bennett visits his mother.

Broadstairs is a traditional British seaside town offering sandy beaches with rides, beach huts, surfing, a harbour and cliff-top promenade. The High Street has historic red-brick buildings occupied by cafes, restaurants, bars and shops. Broadstairs has also been used as a film location in Eastenders (2015), Edge of Heaven (2014) and Hancock and Joan (2008).

Don’t miss The Lady in the Van which is released in cinemas on Friday 13th November 2015.

Links:

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

For more information about the film visit: https://www.facebook.com/LadyInTheVan

For more information about Broadstairs and Viking Bay visit http://www.visitthanet.co.uk/attractions/viking-bay/8623

For more information about Morelli’s Gelato http://www.morellisgelato.com/

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