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That’s a Wrap!

24 Jan

This post is the first one in a very long time and I write it with a certain melancholy.

Like with all movies and TV series, after months of planning, preparation, research, location scouting and filming, comes the last day of shooting and with it, the director’s final words: “That’s a wrap!”

After writing almost every week for the first 14-15 months, 2015 was a fairly quiet affair. During the first part of the year, although some posts were ready on paper, I did not have a computer. Then, when back online and roaring to go, I was offered the opportunity to move abroad for an internal promotion… and I spent August packing. End of September, after 15 years in the UK and the last 6 in Islington, I took my suitcases and head off to Spain!

I will publish the few posts drafted early 2015 but after that it will be tricky to carry on from Spain and not being able to walk around Islington to take pictures. Talking of which, the Islington Film Locations Map will now be opened to everyone who knows and wishes to share with us an Islington film location. I hope to see this map growing and growing.

Thanks to everyone who dropped by at some point, followed the blog, enjoyed it and commented on it! You never know what the future may have in mind and maybe we’ll have a Lights, Camera…Islington! sequel in a few years time but for now, it is …So long, farewell, au revoir, auf wiedersehen, goodbye!

To Islington with Love, Xavier

4 Weddings & Funeral - Highbury Terrace - Final Kiss - FILM

 

 

 

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Lloyd Square: Gary Oldman Spies on You

12 Oct

After a few weeks spent working on movies shot on the sunny Italian Riviera (no I was not in Venice for The wedding), we are back in Islington and to talk about another British actor and A-Lister: Gary Oldman.

Born in South London in the late 1950s, Oldman has been on our screens for the last 30 years, often in enigmatic roles in JFK, Dracula, The Fifth Element or Immortal Beloved – showing my age here. Younger audiences will of course know him from his roles in the Harry Potter and the Dark Knight franchises.

In award-winning Cold War drama Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011), Oldman plays George Smiley, a retired spy back in action to uncover a Soviet agent who has infiltrated MI6.

In the movie, George Smiley’s house is located in a quiet residential area, as you would expect from a spy. We can spot such house on 3 different occasions and from 3 different angles, most probably all shot on the same day in… Lloyd Square!

First at the beginning of the movie when Smiley is forced into retirement,

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy - Lloyd Square - FILM 01

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy - Lloyd Square - MrX 01

Then, halfway through, we can spot him going back home and noticing someone got in,

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy - Lloyd Square - FILM 02

And finally, right at the end of the film.

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy - Lloyd Square - FILM 03

 

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy - Lloyd Square - MrX 02

So the next time you find yourself in Lloyd Square, you may want to double check that nobody is looking at you from behind the curtains.

Fade Out

How to get there?

Islington Film Locations Map

Lloyd Square WC1X 9AJ

King’s Cross station (Zone 1)

Angel Tube Station (Zone 1)

Many buses to King’s Cross Road, Pentonville Road and Rosebery Avenue

 

Enjoyed this post? Feel free to comment, share it with your friends and come to Islington to discover our locations! Don’t forget to send me your pictures.

And if you do know any Islington location used for Film, TV, photo shoot or have been involved in the process, drop me a line at LightsCameraIslington(at)gmail.com or via Twitter

Claremont Square: Harry Potter caught outside Number 12 Grimmauld Place

12 Dec

So, Harry Potter fans and wizards of this world: you’ve travelled the world to come to the UK, went up and down London to visit Leadenhall Market – sorry the Leaky Cauldron and Diagon Alley – tried your luck at Australia House – Gringotts Bank – and made it to King’s Cross Platform 9 ¾ to board the Hogwarts Express…or, failing that, take a picture.

Since you flew on your broomsticks all the way to King’s Cross, you’ll be delighted to know that Number 12 Grimmauld Place, the Order of the Phoenix’s Headquarters, is only a stone’s throw away from you!

Based on the book of the same name published by J.K Rowling, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007), is the fifth instalment in the Harry Potter franchise. There is probably no point in me setting up the scene of such story. Suffice it to say that, early on in the movie, a group of wizards come to get Harry and take him to meet his Godfather, Sirius Black.

What follows is a flight over the Thames that screams “Made in London” to the world: Canary Wharf, Tower Bridge, HMS Belfast, Blackfriars Bridge, Houses of Parliament and… Islington’s very own Claremont Square!

Harry and friends emerge from behind the trees, open an iron gate and, seconds later, Number 12 Grimmauld Place appears.

Claremont Square - Harry Potter & Order of Phoenix - FILM 01

Claremont Square - Harry Potter & Order of Phoenix - FILM 02

Claremont Square - Harry Potter & Order of Phoenix - FILM 03

The strange shape of Claremont Square is due to the fact that, back in the 18th century, a water reservoir was there. Following the construction of a larger one nearby, houses were built and, later, the reservoir emptied and covered with grass, hence its steep aspect. A rather wizardly shape you’ll admit.

HP - Claremont Square - Grimmauld Place - MRX 01

HP - Claremont Square - Grimmauld Place - MRX 02

HP - Claremont Square - Grimmauld Place - MRX 05

Later on in the movie, we can spot again Claremont Square for a brief moment with children playing with the snow.

Claremont Square - Harry Potter & Order of Phoenix - FILM 04

So, Harry Potter fans of this world – what kind of wizards are you if you don’t fly to Islington?

Fade Out

Enjoyed this post? Feel free to comment, share it with your friends and come to Islington to discover our locations! Don’t forget to send me your pictures.

And if you do know any Islington location used for Film, TV, photo shoot or have been involved in the process, drop me a line at TheUnbelievableMrX(at)gmail.com or via Twitter

How to get there?

Islington Film Locations Map

Claremont Square N1

Angel Tube Station (Zone 1)

King’s Cross Station (Zone 1)

Many buses to Angel, Pentonville Road and St John’s Street

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