The Hollywood Blockbusters Filmed in Berkshire

The Hollywood Blockbusters Filmed in Berkshire

As it’s revealed a new film studios is likely to come to Reading, we look back at some of the classic, and not so classic, films and TV programmes shot in Berkshire

Collage of filming pics from Carry on Doctor, Doctor Who and The Eagle has landed
Some of the classic films and TV shot in Berkshire (Image: BerkshireLive/Mirrorpix)

It was revealed this week plans are in place which could see a gigantic new film studio built on the outskirts of Reading.

The plans excited a lot of people, who were no doubt dreaming of bumping into superstars like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Jennifer Lawrence or even Hollywood royalty like Dame Judi Dench in Friar Street Nando’s.

The studios would be the biggest in the UK, and a massive coup for the Thames Valley Science Park owned by the University of Reading, if plans get approved.

But did you know Berkshire has a rich history when it comes to films and TV already?

From Hollywood blockbusters, to hard-hitting dramas, to more quaint English classics, and even a Carry On film, some fantastic work has been caught on camera in Berkshire.

The Eagle Has Landed
The Eagle Has Landed

The Eagle Has Landed

Hollywood stars descended on Mapledurham for the filming of the 1976 classic.Michael Caine and Jenny Agutter starred in the film, which was set in the fictional village of Studley Constable, which was actually Mapledurham House.It was filmed at the height of one of the hottest summers on record, and director John Sturges was regularly seen clad in a thick sheepskin coat.


Downton Abbey
Downton Abbey

Downton Abbey

The hugely popular story the upper classes and those who work for them was filmed at the picturesque Highclere Castle on the outskirts of Newbury. It even made its big screen debut last year.


Harry Potter's childhood house
Harry Potter’s childhood house

Harry Potter’s childhood house

This unassuming semi-detatched home in Privet Drive, Bracknell, was the same one where poor Harry Potter was locked in the cupboard in the early films.In 2001, it was picked to be the home of Harry’s ghastly uncle Vernon, Aunt Petunia and cousin Dudley Dursley in the very first film, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.


Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

In 2009 film crews returned to Bracknell for the final installments of Harry Potter. Scenes were shot in Swinley Forest.


The Plank
The Plank

The Plank

The British slapstick comedy starring Eric Sykes and Tommy Cooper was filmed at Caversham Park village while it was being built back in 1967.We met the couple whose home had a commemorative blue plaque back in 2014.


Buddy's Song
Buddy’s Song

Buddy’s Song

Everyone knows Chesney “The One and Only” Hawkes, but did you know he started his career in the slightly unglamorous surroundings of the windswept Bracknell town centre? He was part of an unlikely pairing with The Who’s Roger Daltrey in Buddy’s Song.


Pride and Prejudice
Pride and Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice

The 2005 version of the classic tale by the Reading-schooled author Jane Austen was filmed at Basildon Park.


X Men: First Class
X Men: First Class

X Men: First Class

The likes of James McAvoy, Jennifer Lawrence and Michael Fassbender were all at Theale’s grand Englefield House for some scenes of the 2011 film.


Bugsy Malone
Bugsy Malone

Bugsy Malone

The 1976 gangster film was set in 1929 New York, which is presumably why Reading’s old Huntley and Palmer’s biscuit factory was the perfect place to shoot some scenes.This picture shows director Alan Parker with a young Jodie Foster and Scott Baio, better known as Chaci from Happy Days.


Soldier Soldier

This was a drama that sent Robson Green on his road to extreme fishing and Jerome Flynn to Game of Thrones, via a massive-selling record of cheesy covers.The cast are pictured here filming in the Broad Street Mall, Reading, and more scenes were captured in Newtown.


Robin Hood
Robin Hood

Robin Hood

Hollywood hard man Russell Crowe was regularly spotted in the Ascot area during the filming of Robin Hood in Swinley Forest, back in 2010.


The Borrowers
The Borrowers

The Borrowers

Some scenes for the film, starring John Goodman, who looks like he’s about to eat the tiny Borrower in the picture, were shot in Theale High Street.


kylie minogue and robbie williams
“The Kids are Alright”

“The Kids are Alright”

The racy music video starring Robbie Williams and Kylie Minogue was shot at Sindlesham’s Nirvana Spa


Endeavour
Endeavour

Endeavour

This was a prequel to the classic Inspector Morse, set in the 1960s. It was filmed at Bearwood College, now Reddam House, in Wokingham.


Midsomer Murders
Midsomer Murders

Midsomer Murders

Scenes for the popular show that leads to very tricky questions for the local superintendent were filmed at Reading Town Hall in April 2019.


John Pertwee
Dr Who

Dr Who

Timelord John Pertwee took his Tardis down to Swallowfield in 1972 for an episode called The Time Monster. He was filmed pootling around Swallowfield House in a in a classic Edwardian Roadster.


The Wrong Mans
The Wrong Mans

The Wrong Mans

The show starring James Corden and Matthew Bayton was another to be filmed in the glorious surroundings of the old Bracknell town centre.


Thunderbirds
Thunderbirds

Thunderbirds

Did you know the classic 60s puppet series was filmed in Slough?


Broadchurch
Broadchurch

Broadchurch

The ITV drama starring David Tennant and Olivia Coleman was filmed in parts at Jennett’s Park in Bracknell and John Nike Leisuresport.

Munchees in Reading's Buttermarket
Munchees in Reading’s Buttermarket

Munchees in Reading’s Buttermarket taking a starring role in Broadchurch series 2.


Episodes
Episodes

Episodes

Friends Star Matt LeBlanc was spotted at John Nike Leisuresport in Bracknell in 2012.


Stephen Merchant filming in Bracknell
Episodes

Fighting with my Family

Stephen Merchant was spotted in Ralph’s Ride, Bracknell, filming the wrestling-themed movie Fighting with My Family. Sadly, the film’s big stars Dwayne “The Rock Johnson” and Vince Vaughan, were nowhere to be seen as filming was for the early scenes in the movie.


The Offence
The Offence

The Offence

Sean Connery was the star of this crime thriller, some of which was filmed in the somewhat unlikely location of the Point Royal flats in Bracknell in April 1972.More scenes were shot at Bracknell Library, which was decked up to look like a police station.This is in spite of the actual Bracknell Police Station being across the road.


Carry on Doctor
Carry on Doctor

Carry on Doctor

A young Barbara Windsor was seen filming at Maidenhead Town Hall, which was redesigned as the hospital where the film was set back in 1967. We’re not sure why a real hospital wouldn’t have worked, but we’re not film producers.


Killing Eve
Killing Eve

Killing Eve

Some scenes for the first series of Killing Eve were shot at Reading Prison. The show’s lead actors Sandra Oh and Jodie Comer were filming at the empty prison in October 2017.


Mapledurham Mill
Taboo

Taboo

Tom Hardy filmed scenes for the BBC’s dark drama Taboo at the mill on the Mapledurham estate.


Eddie the Eagle
Eddie the Eagle

Eddie the Eagle

Dry slope scenes for the film starring Taron Egerton and Hugh Jackman, were shot at the John Nike ski slope in 2015, and crews also used Pope’s Meadow car park for some shots.

News from Berkshire Live

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