Hollywood troops invade Hampshire
Thursday, 13 March 2014
Hampshire features as the backdrop of another Hollywood blockbuster with scenes from George Clooney's latest directorial outing, The Monuments Men, filmed in the county.
The film explores the true story of seven men in World War Two, tasked with protecting items of cultural significance from destruction or theft by the Nazi party. For two days of filming, Clooney and his fellow cast and crew set up camp in Basingstoke to film at Bramley Training Area - one of Film Hampshire's publicised film locations. The site, which is owned by the Ministry of Defence, covers 900 acres and includes extensive deciduous woodland, disused rail lines, and a vast collection of empty farm buildings, warehouses and nissen huts. For The Monuments Men crew this, along with the fact that the site is closed to the public, made it the perfect film location. Look out for scenes of the seven protagonists undergoing their 'basic training' and you'll see Bramley brought to life on the big screen!
Part of Hampshire County Council's Economic Development Office, Film Hampshire helps attract film crews to the region by researching and finding locations for them. In total, Hampshire has some 400 film locations including 40 historic country houses, 25 parks and plenty of woodland. Film crews also benefit from the excellent domestic and international transport links, a wealth of historical connections, local expertise and an extensive network of contacts. In addition, a large number of locally-based companies provide services to the creative industries.
Councillor Seán Woodward, Hampshire County Council's Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment, said: "It's wonderful to see that once again Hampshire has been able to play host to such a high profile film. The Film Hampshire team do a fantastic job boosting Hampshire's economy, and at a time when we are being increasingly challenged to save money whilst increasing income generation, these opportunities really are valuable. Associations like these increase tourism, and the tourism sector plays a vital role in the local economy. It generates well over £2 billion each year from visitors coming into Hampshire, and provides more than 60,000 jobs."
Film Hampshire has just launched a new film map, showing locations that have been used by some of the more noteworthy films and television series. In addition to The Monuments Men, these include Downton Abbey which is filmed at Highclere Castle, multi-award winning Les Miserables, which features some of Winchester's cobbled streets, BBC's Wartime Farm series which took residence for twelve months at Manor Farm in Botley, and several James Bond thrillers including Quantum of Solace, which made use of Farnborough Airport and the Aldershot Military Barracks.