Empire of Light filming wraps today – with around £4million pumped into Thanet’s economy – The Isle Of Thanet News

Shooting Empire of Light with Olivia Colman and Micheal Ward Photo Roberto Fabiani

Filming for the film Empire of Light in Margate wraps today (May 26) after several months of filming in the town – and has brought in around £4million to Thanet’s economy.

Empire of Light crews began arriving in Margate in November last year and say that since then the production will have contributed the £4million across everything from accommodation and food costs to items and services purchased locally.

Photo Steven Collis

This includes accommodation from November to June at locations such as the Sands Hotel, crew living allowances spent in the area, location fees, permits, parking, location rental, l local crew, security, municipal services, public lighting and rental of office space for most productions. departments.

Photo Frank Leppard

The production crews also sourced locally, including props from vintage and second-hand stores as well as food used for film scenes. The lighting department purchased consumables, wiring, and bulbs from local businesses, and construction crews also purchased items locally.

Photo Steven Collis

Many residents answered the call for extras for the film, and 1,300 people of all ages were chosen as background artists throughout filming. The location team liaised with local movie offices, and many residents eager to further their careers in the film industry joined the team as interns and marshals. Costume, hair and make-up, assistant directors and decorators hired locals to work within their teams.

Olivia Colman on set Photo Steven Collis

Thanet municipal businesses and services were used in the production, including sign writers, graffiti removal specialists, locksmiths, an electrical and plumbing company, street lighting technicians from the Thanet council, TDC parking services, laundry service, cleaning companies, fire and health services and safety team, water safety support and drinking water suppliers. Kent-based companies and organizations used also included marquee hire, heating companies, KCC Highways technicians and KCC Street Lighting.

Photo Roberto Fabiani

The production members have also worked with organizations and charities including People Dem Collective, A Better Arlington, Cliftonville Community Centre, Rise Up Clean Up and Residents Associations in various neighborhoods of Margate.

The team has also given career talks at schools and colleges including Canterbury University of the Creative Arts, Hartsdown Academy and Holy Trinity and St Johns Primary School.

Sam Mendes and Roger DeakinPhoto Louis McLaren

Empire of Light director and screenwriter Sam Mendes said: “We wrap up filming Empire of Light today after an incredible 56 days of filming in Margate and along the Kent and Sussex coast.

“I know we’ve caused some disruption, but we couldn’t have asked for a better location than Margate and Dreamland to shoot this film. I want to say a big thank you to everyone at Margate for their patience, in hosting us during prep and production and welcoming all of our cast and crew to your community.

Photo Frank Leppard

Members of the production team will still be in Margate in June and July to complete production.

Empire of Light stars Olivia Colman, Micheal Ward and Colin Firth. The 1980s love story also stars Toby Jones, Tom Brooke, Hannah Onslow, Tanya Moodie and Crystal Clarke.

Locations used included the main Margate seafront road, the beach, the old town, Cliftonville and Darcy’s Café.

Photo Roy Food

The Dreamland neon sign on the Grade II* listed cinema fin has been replaced with Empire Cinema signs and the 20,000ft set at ‘Godden’s Gap’ contains a replica of the old Dreamland cinema, including including the staircase and the chandeliers, with a ticket office outside.

Photo Louis McLaren

The production included fireworks, a Chariots of Fire movie “premiere”, vintage cars and fake snow and rain as well as a mass stage with mods and skinheads.

Photo Frank Leppard

The production team also installed fairy lights along the waterfront and in the old town. In response to public requests, Neal Street Productions made a formal offer to donate the lights to the town of Margate, once filming was completed.

However, Thanet’s council said issues with the lights mean they won’t stay up.

Council officials, in consultation with Kent County Council’s Motorways team, have carried out an investigation into the likely running costs, ongoing energy and maintenance costs and testing and license fees which would be incurred, if the lights were switched on by Thanet District Council.

Photo Frank Leppard

A statement from Thanet council read: ‘During the investigation, Neal Street Productions informed us that they were experiencing continuing technical problems with the lights, which had been installed as all-weather equipment but were suffering in makes water penetration in wet weather due to a manufacturing defect.

“Based on this, these lights are not considered to be strong enough for long-term use on the waterfront and would not withstand the continuous impact of the weather to which they would inevitably be subjected.

“In addition to concerns about the lights’ resistance to wind and rain, the existing lights do not have controls installed to allow them to be timed and cannot be easily dimmed. Currently the lights are too brilliant to pass a road safety assessment and add to light pollution in the area, with potential impacts on the environment and biodiversity.

Photo John Horton

“Now that filming is coming to an end, Neal Street will begin to switch off the lights on Friday 27th May. Whilst the lights have been a positive addition to the Margate street scene, we can confirm that having fully considered the factors already listed, we made the difficult decision to decline the offer.

Photo Louis McLaren

“We understand that Margate’s charter trustees have contacted the Empire of Light production team to verify if any of the infrastructure could remain, to facilitate the fitting of more suitable and robust replacement lamps. .”

The film will be released by Searchlight Pictures.