We’ve taken a trip around underground stations and visited landmarks famous for their cinematic contributions. It is now time to turn to those addresses around the capital that are lesser known, but still worth visiting for those of us who enjoy a pilgrimage to centre of movie backdrops.
It’s been sixteen years since William Thacker spilt orange juice all over famous actress Anna Scott in Notting Hill (1999), but unfortunately, the coffee shop where he bought the fateful glass of juice has since closed. However, it’s right in front of its next door neighbour on the corner of Portobello Road and Westbourne Park Road that Thacker actually bumps into Anna. The previously empty property is now a coffee bar owned by Coffee Republic. Maybe you could meet your future superstar spouse there?
Notting Hill (1999)
For those who would rather stick to the outdoor sites, then Postman’s Park, St Martin’s Le-Grand, London EC1A is a good place to stop by. The memorial tablet honouring Alice Ayres, which features in the film Closer (2004), and serves Natalie Portman’s character with a fictitious name to make her own, really exists in the park.
Meanwhile, it is at Queen Mary’s Gardens inside Regent’s Park that Marcus accidentally kills a duck in About a Boy (2002). Fans of the film will also probably want to visit 215 Sutherland Avenue, Maida Vale, W9. This is the site that was previously Otto Dining Lounge – the place where Will took his dates, even when he wanted to split up with them. Filming took place before the minimalist but pricey Otto opened to the public. Sadly, it has since been replaced by Graze Restaurant, which eventually closed to make way for an Everyman Cinema.
About a Boy (2002)
You might even like to check out the Phoenix Cinema at 52 High Road, East Finchley, which is where Colin Clark watches Marilyn Monroe on screen and falls for the star in My Week with Marilyn (2011).
Back to outdoor venues, the beautiful and relaxing Italian Gardens on the north side of Kensington Gardens feature in Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004). Its fountains serve to get Darcy and Cleaver wet during their very unmanly fight. However whilst they are meant to have just come out of the Serpentine Gallery, in truth the gallery is a very long walk to the south of the fountains.
Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004)
On to another film scripted by Richard Curtis. Charles opens the door to the terraced house at 22 Highbury Terrace, Highbury Fields in London N5 and steps out for what has since been considered one of the corniest endings in film. Charles and Carrie have their cliché kiss in the rain in Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994), in a scene that will forever be remembered for MacDowell’s line, “Is it still raining? I hadn’t noticed.”
I now finish off this series the way I started it – with another Harry Potter location. Australia House, Strand, London WC2B 4LA is in reality the building for the Australian High Commission, but is better known by the fans of the franchise about the boy wizard as Gringotts Wizarding Bank.
Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994)
Can you list any other London locations which have been featured in films? Let us know in the comment section below.
Have you read ‘Film location: London (part 1 – the London underground)’?