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
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.
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.