Making a creative ‘ bubble’
Walk around the atmospheric hangars and onto the concrete of what’s left of the old runway at West Raynham and it isn’t hard to see what captured the imagination of the film makers.
“One of the things Joanna (Hogg) likes is to create a bubble when she’s working, so everyone is focused and you get this togetherness and creativity,” says the film’s producer Luke Schiller. “In London, everyone tends to go home at the end of the day and that creative bubble dissipates. It helps create camaraderie if you are in the countryside. I had never even been to Norfolk before but it has been a very peaceful and beautiful location with these great open skies.
“We hired someone to scout locations and were looking for an abandoned army station or airfield where we could base ourselves for the entire shoot. It was wet and damp and just a shell when we first saw it and a few people thought we were insane, but as soon we walked in we knew immediately it would be great.
“The owners have been amazing and let us knock everything into shape. I feel, I hope, we are breathing life back into these incredible old buildings. We had power put in, the roof fixed and it really is an incredible space and in my experience there are very few of them available in the UK.”
There was an eight week construction period during which time the hangar was transformed into a hugely impressive set complete with housing and a film school, which the movie centres around.
The film wrapped at the end of October after 32 days shooting – mostly at West Raynham as well as a few scenes shot off site around the county.
“We have used as many local crew as possible over the summer. It is not only good to create local employment and support some of these amazing skilled people here, but also from a practical point of view, we don’t have to put people up in hotels and transport them all.”