Disney’s Christopher Robin (2018)

Christoper Robin Movie Poster of Christoper robin in a suit and coat carrying a briefcase and umbrella. Winnie the pooh, piglet, tigger and eeyore surround him. Disney Christopher Robin is written in gold with Ewan McGregor written in green on top. Sooner or later, your past catches up to you is underneath in black.

Christoper Robin Movie Poster ©The Walt Disney Studios

 

Writers: Alex Ross Perry and Allison Schroeder

Director: Marc Forster

Starring: Ewan McGregor Jim Cummings Hayley Atwell Chris O’Dowd Brad Garrett Toby Jones Nick Mohammed Peter Capaldi Sophie Okonedo.

Production Company: Walt Disney Pictures.

Kent Locations Used: Port of Dover Cruise Terminal One (Dover Marine Station), Shakespeare beach.

In this feature by Disney Studios, AA Milne’s Christopher Robin (Ewan McGregor), is a working man with a wife and family, who is helped by his childhood friends, Pooh (Jim Cummings) and Co. to rediscover the joy of living. Over a period of four weeks, production transformed the entire historic Grade II Listed Dover Marine Station, an old Victorian railway station at the Dover Cruise Terminal into a London railway station, including running trains. A short film for the end credits was also shot on Shakespeare Beach in Dover.

Starring Ewan McGregor (Moulin Rouge, Trainspotting) as Christopher Robin, Jim Cummings (Princess and the Frog, Shrek) as the voices of Winnie the Pooh and Tigger, Hayley Atwell (Captain America, Cinderella) as Robin’s wife Evelyn Brad Garrett as Eeyore, Toby Jones (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, The Mist) as Owl, Nick Mohammed (The Martian, Bridget Jones’s Baby) voices Piglet, Peter Capaldi (Doctor Who, World War Z) as Rabbit and Sophie Okonedo (Hotel Rwanda, Dirty Pretty Things) as Kanga.

The Railway Station at Dover Western Docks was first opened in January 1915, to receive wounded soldiers during WWI via the newly built Dover Harbour in 1909 and dispatched them to hospitals across the UK with best possible speed. The Unknown Warrior was returned to Britain here before being laid to rest in Westminster Abbey. From 1919, the station served the civilian population wishing to take the Express Boat Train to the Continent, though during WWII, it once again served the military. After its closure in 1994, it has served as Dover Cruise Terminal 1 which opened in 1996.

Production for Christopher Robin in Dover started in September 2017 and the listed and fully intact station building of Cruise Terminal 1, was transformed back into a railway station, complete with trains, shops and almost 400 local extras providing the background of a busy London terminal for a few days. Cruise passengers were diverted to Terminal 2, which gave production unusual, sole use of a large station set.

Port of Dover PR & Media Relations Officer, Justine Wingate said: “Dover Marine Station here at the Port of Dover, is a unique and versatile location. Not just because it is a beautiful example of a Victorian railway station but it is situated in a large secure area with little public access and plenty of space for unit bases and equipment.
The team from Disney spotted its potential as a featured location straight away and did an outstanding job in bringing it to life for Christopher Robin.”

Kent Film Officer, Gabrielle Lindemann said: “Once the location was secured, the biggest challenge was to accommodate the sometimes additional two to three hundred crew and cast. Local businesses stepped up to provide additional unit support and Kent accommodation providers across the whole of East Kent hosted our visitors.
Christopher Robin presented Kent Film Office with a great opportunity to show the sector that the county can successfully host and manage large scale productions.”

Dover houses Europe’s busiest ferry port, connecting the UK with the European mainland. Dover Castle towers above the town, signalling Dover’s strategic importance in the defence of the country and the White Cliffs are one of the most recognised landmarks in Britain. Some other feature films shot around Dover are ‘King Lear’, ‘Avengers’, ‘Into the Woods’, and ‘The Ones Below’.

The film will be released in the UK on 17th August 2018.

For more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map. 


Venus (2007)

Peter O Toole and Jodie Whittaker staring at each other in front of a painting of Venus

Peter O Toole and Jodie Whittaker in front of a painting of Venus © Buena Vista International Photo Credit Nicola Dove Eyebox

Writer: Hanif Kureishi

Director: Roger Michell

Starring: Peter O’Toole, Leslie Phillips, Beatrice Savoretti, Jodie Whittaker

Production Company: Miramax, FilmFour, UK Film Council, Free Range Films

Kent Filming Locations: Whitstable and The Old Neptune Pub

From the director of Notting Hill (Roger Mitchell), Venus marks the return of Peter O’Toole and Leslie Phillips (Maurice and Ian respectively) to the big screen and  is the tale of two aging thespians who never quite hit the big time. When not working, they spend their days bickering until their lives are disrupted by Ian’s grand-niece Jessie (Jodie Whittaker) coming to stay.

Whilst she annoys Ian, Maurice is completely captivated by Jessie and proceeds to show her London’s sights. Spending time together, both learn valuable lessons from the other. Maurice soon realises that despite his age and experience he knows very little of the world and worldly wise Jessie learns the value of respect for herself and others.

A Kentish seaside town provided the location for Maurice’s last trip. After an accident, Maurice realises how frail he is and decides to return to his childhood haunts. Accompanied by Jessie, he is able to dip his toes one last time into the sea at Whitstable.

Landlord of The Old Neptune Pub Dixie Flynn said: ‘We had a great time when they filmed here last year – one of the locals was asked to sit in on one of the scenes. I expect all of us at the pub will go and see it and have a few more drinks. I heard Peter OToole on the radio saying he doesn’t care about an Oscar nomination, but he wants an Oscar. We all hope he gets it.’

The film has won numerous accolades and Peter O’Toole gained a “Best performance by an actor in a leading role” Oscar nomination for his role in the film.  O’Toole and Leslie Philips were both nominated for Baftas, for Best Actor in a leading role and best actor in a supporting role respectively.

Whitstable is a seaside town near Canterbury, famous for its annual Oyster Festival as well as the delightful harbour, shingle beach, busy high street and strong arts and culture scene.  Terry and Mason’s Great Food Trip (2015) and Tipping the Velvet (2002) have previously chosen to film in Whitstable.

Venus was released in cinemas in 2007 and is now available to purchase on DVD.

For more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map. 

Great Expectations (1999)

Joe Gargery (Clive Russell ) with Young Pip (Gabriel Thomson) in his shoulders walking through a field, soldiers are walking either side of them

Joe Gargery (Clive Russell ) and Young Pip (Gabriel Thomson) © BBC

Directed By: Julian Jarrold

Written By: Charles Dickens (Novel) & Tony Marchant (Adaptation)

Starring: Ioan Gruffudd, Charlotte Rampling, Justine Waddell, Clive Russell

Production Company: BBC, WGBH

Kent Locations Used: Sheerness Docks, Kingswear Castle Paddlesteamer, Chatham Docks & River Medway

Surrounded by memorabilia from her ill-fated wedding, Ms Havisham invites local orphan Pip to her home to amuse her as she encourages her spiteful daughter Estella to break his heart. Pip’s future as a blacksmith is forever changed when an unknown sponsor pays for him to become a gentleman.

Starring Ioan Gruffudd (Fantastic Four) as Pip, Charlotte Rampling (The Duchess) as Miss Havisham and Justine Waddell (Killing Bono) as Estella, this is the first BBC adaptation of the classic Dickens tale and was originally aired in 1999.

Young Pip (Gabriel Thompson) and Young Biddy (Laura Aikman) sat on the grass talking to each other, wicker baskets are behind them

Young Pip (Gabriel Thompson) and Young Biddy (Laura Aikman) in Great Expectations 1999 © BBC

Filmed in a variety of Kent Locations, the BBC brought Great Expectations back to the county where it was originally conceived by Dickens.  Herbert Pocket’s bride to be, Clara, provides a refuge for reformed convict Abel Magwitch at Sheerness Docks where exterior shots of her house were filmed. Pip and Herbert Pocket arrange to meet Magwitch and help his escape at Chatham Docks, where slip 8 was used for the scene and exterior shots of the prison hulk ships.

The dramatic scene where Magwitch attempts to escape is well known to fans of the Dickens classic. The local Paddle steamer, “Kingswear Castle”, was used for the scenes and the production company used Stangate Creek on the River Medway for shots of the ship on the Thames Estuary. The Kingswear Castle also features in the 1998 BBC adaptation of Dickens last novel, Our Mutual Friend, starring Anna Friel and Paul McGann.

Dickens’ features Kent locations in many of his novels. The city of Rochester, which holds annual Dickens celebrations each year, can be recognised in many of the author’s novels such as The Mystery of Edwin Drood, The Pickwick Papers and David Copperfield. The Kent Film Office celebrates Dickens history with the county including Tv and film adaptions in The Dickens Trail.

Great Expectations was shown on BBC in 1999 and is now available to buy on DVD.

 

For more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map. 

 


The Mill on the Floss (1997)

The Mill on the Floss poster- montage of three different characters from the film, a man in a top hat, a women with her arm on her hip in front and then a man on a white horse in front. The Mill on the Floss is written in blue

The Mill on the Floss poster © BBC

Director: Graham Theakston

Writer: Hugh Stoddart (Screenplay) & George Eliot (Novel)

Starring: Emily Watson, Cheryl Campbell, James Frain, Bernard Hill, Joanna David, Ifan Meredith

Production Company: BBC, Canal+ Carnival Film & Television, UGC DA International

Kent Locations: The Historic Dockyard Chatham

The Mill on the Floss is a 1997 BBC adaptation of the George Eliot classic of the same name which is about a young woman’s struggle for freedom and love in conventional Victorian society.

The story follows intelligent, free spirited Maggie Tulliver (Emily Watson), whose father forbids her to see her childhood friend Philip Wakem (James Frain) after his family takes away their beloved mill on the river Floss. What will Maggie do when torn by devotion to her family and her true love?

The adaption is written by Hugh Stoddart (To the Lighthouse, Remembrance, We Think the World of You), directed by Graham Theakston (The Politician’s Wife, The Bill, Sherlock) and starring Emily Watson (War Horse, Red Dragon, Everest), Cheryl Campbell (Doctor Foster, Chariots of Fire, Casualty), James Frain (TRON: Legacy, The Lone Ranger, The Tunnel), Bernard Hill (Wolf Hall, Titanic, The Scorpion King), Joanna David (You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger, The Soul Keeper, Cotton Mary) and Ifan Meredith (Warriors, Metroland, Titanic, The Grand).

The Mill on the Floss screenshot at The Historic Dockyard Chatham - a man on a horse and carriage with building behind him

The Mill on the Floss screenshot at The Historic Dockyard Chatham © BBC

The Mill on the Floss screenshot at The Historic Dockyard Chatham - a man walking along a street with a horse and carriage behind him

The Mill on the Floss screenshot at The Historic Dockyard Chatham © BBC

The row of period houses at The Historic Dockyard Chatham features in The Mill on the Floss as the exterior for Wakem Solicitor’s, with another area providing the exterior for Guest and Co.

The Historic Dockyard Chatham is a popular film location boasting over 100 buildings and 80 acres of filming space including Georgian and Victorian buildings, a submarine, dry dock, cobbled streets and industrial buildings. The Historic Dockyard Chatham has previously been used in productions such as Jekyll and Hyde (2015), Great Expectations (2012) and The World is Not Enough (1999).

The Mill on the Floss was shown on New Year’s Day 1997 and is now available on DVD.

 

For more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map. 


Hercule Poirots Christmas (1995)

 

David Suchet as Hercule Poirot in a Snowy Chilham with a black classic car behind him

David Suchet as Hercule Poirot in a Snowy Chilham © ITV

Director: Edward Bennett

Writer: Clive Exton

Starring: David Suchet, Philip Jackson, Vernon Dobtcheff,  Simon Roberts

Production Company: Carnival Film & Television, London Weekend Television, Picture Partnership Productions

Kent Filming Locations: Chilham 

In 1995 Hercule Poirot (David Suchet) visited Chilham in Kent for a further instalment of his adventures as written by Agatha Christie.

Multi millionaire Simeon (Vernon Dubtcheff) arranges a Christmas gathering with all the family, including prodigal son Harry (Brian Gwaspari) and a newly discovered grand daughter, Pilar (Sasha Behar).

When everyone is gathered, Simeon hints at changing his will and favouring the newcomers Harry and Pilar . The scene is set for a power game with deadly consequences and when Simeon is mudered, Chief Inspector Japp (Philip Jackson) calls upon Poirot to investigate.

Edward Bennett (Agatha Christie, Second Sight: Hide and Seek) directs with David Suchet (Flushed away, A Perfect Murder, The Bank Job) returning as Poirot alonsgside Philip Jackson (Deception, My Week with Marilyn), Vernon Dobtcheff (Before Sunset, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade) and Simon Roberts  (Hollow, Ted & Ralph).

For this drama, the pictureque Kentish village of Chilham was transformed into a winter wonderland. A layer of snow covered the beautiful timber framed houses lining the square and the approach to Chilham Castle, which represented the family home.

Although it was the first time that the picturesque village was used as the set for an Agatha Christie adaptation, it wouldn’t remain the last as  Miss Marple – The Moving Finger was also filmed there in 2005.  Other filming projects which have filmed in Chilham include Channel 4 comedy Chickens (2011) and BBC’s Emma (2009).

Hercule Poirots Christmas was first shown in 1995 and is now available to buy on DVD.

 

For more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map.