As one of the world’s leading cities, London has a long and proud heritage when it comes to film-making and the heritage of the film industry. The city offers many opportunities to visit locations associated with film-making and places that have acted as the back-drop to famous films and related events.
Famous film-making locations in London
London has had a place in film-making since the early days, when moving pictures were invented. A number of film studios have had a home in the city, including one of the early facilities, Ealing Studios. The film studios at Ealing were established at the beginning of the 1900s, and they still operate to this day. In addition, there are numerous sites that have been used for filming on location in London, and many of these have become popular attractions for visitors, including those with a special interest in the history of cinema. Camden, for example, has been the setting for a number of famous films, including the original version of The Ladykillers (1955) and Alfie (1966), featuring Michael Caine. Other late twentieth century blockbusters also filmed on location in a number of areas of London, including St Pancras Station (Batman, 1989), Hampstead Heath (Monty Python and the Holy Grail, 1975), and Portobello Road (Notting Hill, 1999).
Ideas and tips for planning film-related trips to London
Given the wide variety of locations, studios, and archives to choose from, a film-related visit to London is well worth planning in advance. In this way, it should be easier to visit the maximum number of places within your available time and not to be disappointed by closing hours or the need to buy tickets for certain venues or experiences. As well as using individual time to visit some sites that are of particular interest, perhaps from some of your favourite films that have been set in London, it is also worth considering joining a guided tour. Such a tour can add a wealth of information to a visit, and there are numerous options on offer for visitors.
Some film tours available in London
Any film-related trip to London should include something that’s hot in the film world, and in London at the moment, the Hogwarts express continues to be a big attraction, with Harry Potter-related stories still making the news with some frequency. Harry Potter studio tours, bus tours, and walking tours are all available to maximise the number of locations that you can see that were used in the Harry Potter films, from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (2001) onwards.
James Bond is another big name to feature prominently in London film tours, and again, walking tours and bus tours can be arranged, taking in sights such as those used in Skyfall (2012). Other specialist film-related tours involve, for example, Doctor Who, Paddington Bear, and Sherlock Homes.
Summary: film heritage trips to London
There is plenty to see in London related to film-making and its history. Plan what you want to see in advance and capitalise on guided tours to get the inside story on popular films, such as the Harry Potter series.