The Great (2020)

Catherine the Great (Elle Fanning) and Peter III (Nicholas Hoult) dancing in a ballroom in historical costumes, with candlelight in the background.

Elle Fanning and Nicholas Hoult in The Great (2020) © Lionsgate Entertainment

Writer: Tony McNamara, Tess Morris, Gretel Vella, James Wood
Director:
Colin Bucksey, Bert & Bertie, Ben Chessell, Geeta Patel, Matt Shakman
Starring:
Elle Fanning, Nicholas Hoult, Phoebe Fox, Gwilym Lee, Sacha Dhawan
Production Company:
Media Rights Capital, Thruline Entertainment, Echo Lake Entertainment
Kent Locations Used:
Hever Castle, St Clere Estate

This upcoming satirical comedy from American streaming company Hulu follows the infamous rise of Prussian-born Catherine the Great as she ascends to become the longest serving female ruler in Russian history. Forced to choose between her own personal happiness and the future of an empire, she abandons a life of love and romance and vows to change a country plagued by deceit and ruin.

This ten-part historical drama was written by Tony McNamara (The Favourite, Ashby) Tess Morris (Casual, Man Up), Gretel Vella (Doctor Doctor) and James Wood (The Gamechangers, Quacks). The TV series was produced by Media Rights Capital, Thruline Entertainment and Echo Lake Entertainment  and features episodes directed by Colin Bucksey (The Affair, Breaking Bad, Ray Donovan), Bert & Bertie (Troop Zero, Kidding), Ben Chessell (The Only Person in the World, Giri/Haji), Geeta Patel (Meet the Patels, Dead to Me) and Matt Shakman (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The Good Wife).

The Great’s lead cast are  Elle Fanning (Super 8,  Maleficent, Mary Shelley) as Catherine the Great, Nicholas Hoult (Tolkien, Mad Max: Fury Road, Warm Bodies) as Peter III of Russia and Phoebe Fox (Close to the Enemy, The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death), Gwilym Lee (Bohemian Rhapsody, Midsomer Murders) and Sacha Dhawan (Iron Fist, The History Boys) in supporting roles.

Two locations in Kent were utilised as rich historical backdrops in this international production.

The Italian Loggia on Hever Castle lake doubles as a ballroom of an Eastern European house where Peter III of Russia (Nicholas Hoult) visits. During filming production also visited the fields and stables of St Clere Estate to film various battle scenes.

Hever Castle is an outstanding 13th century and Tudor castle with a moat, stunning Italianate gardens, a beautiful lake, as well as a mock Tudor Village. It was the original home of the Boleyn family. Productions that filmed here include Inkheart (2008) and upcoming TV series The Third Day.

St Clere Estate is set in 2800 acres of the rolling Kent countryside and offers stunning views of the North Downs. Some of the ground’s features include formal gardens, paddocks, a meadow, fields, an orangery, green houses and a temple by the lake. St Clere Estate has previously been used to film Road Games (2016) and Sky’s original series Gangs of London (2020).

The Great will be available to watch on StarzPlay from Thursday 18th June 2020.

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


Gangs of London (2020- )

Production poster showing the London skyline and four actors in suits above it in the rainy clouds. Sky Original Gangs of London written in white

Gangs of London (2019) © Sky UK Limited

Writers: Peter Berry, Claire Wilson, Carl Joos, Lauren Sequeira, Gareth Evans, Matt Flannery
Directors: Corin Hardy, Xavier Gens, Gareth Evans
Starring: Joe Cole, Colm Meaney and Michelle Fairley
Production Company:
Pulse Films
Kent Locations Used: St Clere Estate near Sevenoaks, Dartford

Gangs of London tells the story of a city torn apart by power struggles, and the sudden vacuum that arises when the head of London’s most notorious crime family, played by Colm Meaney (Tolkien (2019)), is assassinated. Supporting cast include Joe Cole (Peaky Blinders (2016-2017) and Michelle Fairley (Game of Thrones (2011 – 2013)).

This brand-new Sky original by Pulse Films is a nine-part drama about the inner workings of the largest criminal organisation in London and was created by visionary, award-winning filmmaker Gareth Evans (The Raid: Redemption (2011)) and his creative partner Matt Flannery. The series is directed by Gareth Evans, Corin Hardy (The Nun (2018)) and Xavier Gens (Budapest (2018).

During filming production visited St Clere Estate to stage a Traveller site which is the base of a rival gang. A short driving scene was filmed on Pilgrim’s Way in Dartford. The Dartford Marshes border the Thames by the Queen Elizabeth II bridge and feature as the landing place for a drug delivery by a group of Turkish gang members.

St Clere Estate is set in 2,800 acres of rolling Kent countryside and offers stunning views of the North Downs. The estate features formal gardens, a meadow, ploughed fields, an orangery and a temple by the lake. Previous productions to film at St Clere Estate include Future Tense: The Story of H.G. Wells (2016) and Road Games (2016).

Dartford has a rich industrial heritage and boasts one of the largest shopping centres in Europe, Bluewater. It is a popular film location and recent productions to film here include The Corrupted (2019) and The Escape (2018).

 

Gangs of London will be available to stream on Sky Atlantic and NOW TV from 23rd April 2020.

 

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

 

 

 

 


Future Tense: The Story of H.G. Wells (2016)

Time machine at The Historic Dockyard Chatham

Time machine at The Historic Dockyard Chatham © BBC South East

Production Company: BBC South East

Kent Locations Used: Sandgate, Folkestone, The Historic Dockyard Chatham, St Clere Estate, Sevenoaks

To mark H.G. Wells’ 150th birthday, Future Tense: The Story of H.G. Wells, presented by Dominic Sandbrook, discovers how a sleepy corner of the country inspired some of the most fantastic ideas in science fiction.

The BBC South East production team filmed at Sandgate beach and Wells House in Folkestone, The Historic Dockyard Chatham which is doubles as The Time Machine Workshop and St Clere Estate in Sevenoaks. They also filmed in East Sussex, Surrey and London.

Folkestone is a seaside town with an elegant clifftop promenade, a lower coastal park, a fishing harbour and Victorian cliff-top lifts. The area has featured in a wide range of productions including The Tunnel: Sabotage (2016), Lifeline (2012) and Is Anybody There? (2009).

The Historic Dockyard Chatham is a 17th century dockyard set over 80 acres, containing over 100 buildings dating from the Georgian and Victorian Periods. It has been used extensively for filming, appearing in productions such as Rustom (2016), Partners in Crime (2015) and The World is Not Enough (1999).

Set across 2,800 acres of the rolling Kent countryside, St Clere Estate offers stunning views of the North Downs. The house itself was built in 1630 and has some fine architectural examples of the Caroline era. St Clere Estate has been previously featured on screen in Road Games (2016) and The Mirror Crack’d (1980).

Future Tense: The Story of H.G. Wells will air on Friday 16th September 2016 at 19.30 on BBC One South East can be found wherever you are in the country: Sky Channel 963, FreeSat 959, Freeview 858.

 

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

 


The Mirror Crack’d (1980)

Angela Lansbury, Rock Hudson and Edward Fox stood having a conversation in front of a window with beige curtains

Angela Lansbury, Rock Hudson and Edward Fox © Columbia-Warner Distributors

Starring: Angela Lansbury, Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudson, Tony Curtis, Geraldine Chaplin, Edward Fox and Kim Novak

Production Company: G.W. Films, EMI Films

Kent Locations used: St Clere Estate, Smarden, Shoreham

The Mirror Crack’d is a detective drama based on an Agatha Christie novel of the same name. In this instalment of the Miss Marple Franchise, a visiting Hollywood production has come to the town of St Mary Mead. The story focuses on the life of Marina Rudd (Elizabeth Taylor), a veteran actress competing for the spotlight with a younger actress, Lola (Kim Novak), in an upcoming production. When a local resident is poisoned at a grand reception, it is thought that Marina herself was the intended victim.

Angela Lansbury (Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Murder She Wrote, Beauty and the Beast) stars as Miss Jane Marple alongside Elizabeth Taylor (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Cleopatra), Tony Curtis (Some Like it Hot), Rock Hudson (Dynasty, McMilan & Wife, Pillow Talk), Geraldine Chaplin (Remember my Name, Doctor Zhivago) Edward Fox (Gandi, Never Say Never Again) and Kim Novak (The Great Bank Robbery, Falcon Crest).

St Clere Estate, Heaverham in the Sevenoaks District of Kent is a private, family run country estate that today prides itself on being an ideal location for filming and photography, due to its period architecture and beautiful grounds. In this episode, it was perfect of the setting for Gossington Hall, the grand home of the Rudds.

 Ye Olde George Inn and a Bridge on Church Street in Shoreham are both noticeable in the production, doubling as part of the village of St Mary Mead. Shoreham is a picturesque village near Sevenoaks, famous for its traditional pubs and annual May Day duck race.

The village of Smarden and St Michaels Church are also used to double as the village of St Mary Mead. The Thatched House in Smarden was used as Miss Marple’s cottage. Smarden is located in the Ashford district of Kent, and the traditional thatched houses and village shops made it a perfect filming location.

The Mirror Crack’d was first released in February 1980 and is now available to buy on DVD.

 

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