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
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.
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
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
In 2009 film crews returned to Bracknell for the final installments of Harry Potter. Scenes were shot in Swinley Forest.
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.
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
The 2005 version of the classic tale by the Reading-schooled author Jane Austen was filmed at Basildon Park.
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.
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.
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.
Hollywood hard man Russell Crowe was regularly spotted in the Ascot area during the filming of Robin Hood in Swinley Forest, back in 2010.
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.
“The Kids are Alright”
The racy music video starring Robbie Williams and Kylie Minogue was shot at Sindlesham’s Nirvana Spa
This was a prequel to the classic Inspector Morse, set in the 1960s. It was filmed at Bearwood College, now Reddam House, in Wokingham.
Scenes for the popular show that leads to very tricky questions for the local superintendent were filmed at Reading Town Hall in April 2019.
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 show starring James Corden and Matthew Bayton was another to be filmed in the glorious surroundings of the old Bracknell town centre.
Did you know the classic 60s puppet series was filmed in Slough?
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 taking a starring role in Broadchurch series 2.
Friends Star Matt LeBlanc was spotted at John Nike Leisuresport in Bracknell in 2012.
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.
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
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.
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.
Tom Hardy filmed scenes for the BBC’s dark drama Taboo at the mill on the Mapledurham estate.
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.
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