Thursday, August 25, 2005

Some info re "The Italian Job"

Re The Italian Job.

The famous "I only asked you to blow the bloody doors off!" scene was shot in the grounds of Crystal Palace Park. In 1969 that section of the park was still used for motor racing and some of the gang's "rehearsals" were shot on the track. In one of the wide shots you can clearly see the landmark BBC transmitter which confirms the location.

The day it was shot, I was playing in my parents' back garden, which backed onto Ledrington Road, SE19. The sound of the explosion quite shook me, but it was only later, when I saw the film, that I realised what had caused it. I now live in Yorkshire, but perhaps someone armed with this knowledge and a still may be able to take that £10 shot.

Great site by the way!
Mike Fizio

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

norman wisdom in straight role

Would you wish to add the film below to your site? (these details taken from a website). The location parts of the film were shot in Southport, Lancashire (hotel, fairground, streets, etc). I was a teenager in Southport at the time, and myself and several friends worked as extras, particularly for a 'hippy party' scene. I can dig up more stuff if you're interested

Congratulations on your site Best wishes Stephen Lee

Norman Wisdom What's Good For The Goose
- Sally Geeson, Terrence Alexander, Sarah Atkinson - 1969

Assistant Bank Manager Timothy Barlett's future changes when he meets hippy Nikki.

viewer's comments:

- A timid man's eyes are opened to the swinging sixties
If you can get over the shock of seeing Norman Wisdom playing someone other than Pitkin without the ill fitting suit and cap, then it's not as bad as you'd expect. The speeded up title sequence was a nice idea but unfortunately it goes on far too long and outstays it's welcome. Confusingly there's a credit attributing the singing of the theme to Norman himself, but that version is at the end of the film.

Simply, Norman plays a somewhat timid banker who has a fairly hum drum life, married with children. He ends up having to go to the executive conference held at a seaside resort. On the way he picks up two teenage girl hitchhikers who end up opening his eyes to the fun filled world of the late 1960's. There's visual appeal in the shape of Sally Geeson (sister of Judy) who once said the most embarrassing thing she ever did was the nude scene on the beach in this film.

For the genre, a lightweight swinging sixties comedy it's enjoyable. Features "The Pretty Things" in a psychedelic club scene. Groovy Man!

- Favourable!
I can fully understand why some people dislike this film when taken at face value, but from a personal point of view, I love it! As a huge fan of 60's culture, I think that it's a lovely "period piece", well in keeping with the times. The nightclub scenes are suitably groovy with the fabulous Pretty Things, whose appearance, while maybe not as dramatic as that by The Yardbirds in "Blow Up", is nonetheless highly entertaining. And of course, Sally Geeson is absolutely gorgeous (as ever!) Sarah Atkinson is rather tasty too!

I imagine that the two main categories of people that despise this film are "Old School" Norman Wisdom fans who expected him to be staggering around calling "Mr. Grimsdale!" and those who take exception to the non-moral stance concerning extra-marital affairs contained within the subtext of this film (let us not forget, this was the era of "Free Love"!) All the same, this flick does have a cult following, mainly consisting of Sally Geeson and Pretty Things fans. I qualify on both counts, so I suppose I am a little biased!

- This brings back lots of memories!
I remember this film being made as a little boy, so it always holds a place in my affection. I remember being surprised they took two days to film a scene that only lasted seconds in the final edit. i met Norman Wisdom and Sally Geeson on set and I still remember offering him a sweet and then signing his autograph.

All the family attended the premiere and I enjoyed it including the memorable theme tune. I don't suppose it will hold any interest to anybody anymore apart from the odd Norman Wisdom devotee in Albani (where I believe he was big!) and I can't say I've seen it in thirty years. From what I've read it wasn't regarded as a particularly good film by the critics. But, I would like to see it one more time if only to bring back the memories of that little boy I was in 1969.
Owen Christopher Keenan

Cast overview, first billed only:
Norman Wisdom .... Timothy Bartlett
Sally Geeson .... Nikki
Sarah Atkinson (I) .... Meg
Sally Bazely .... Margaret
Stuart Nichol .... Bank Manager
Derek Francis .... Harrington
Terence Alexander (I) .... Frisby
Paul Whitsun-Jones .... Clark
David Lodge (I) .... Porter
Karl Lanchbury .... Pete
Hilary Pritchard (II) .... Cashier in Discotheque
H.H. Goldsmith .... Policeman
Thelma Falls-Hand .... Bank Clerk
George Meaton .... Third Speaker
Duncan Taylor (I) .... Other Bank

Also Known As: Girl Trouble (1969)
Runtime: 105 min
Country: UK
Language: English
Color: Color (Eastmancolor)

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Frenzy info and a suggestion re Blind Date

Great website, I'd been trying to figure out where the dating agency was filmed in Frenzy for ages!

Took a stroll to your find yesterday - the 'Legends' sports shop is now closed and empty.

For interest only, you can get an overhead photo of the block which the dating agency was in by putting Legends postcode into and then selecting the aerial photo button and zoom in to 1:5000 (If you hover your mouse over the photo it overlays the current street atlas.)
Legends address:
19-121 Oxford Street,

It isn't particularly clear but shows (I think) that there is at least part of one alleyway still in the block bounded by Oxford Street/Wardour Street/Hollen Street/Great Chapel Street, but I don't think it is the main one at Legends which I think was 'Allens Court' judging by the following map. This is very old though so it could have had a name change (Hollen Street is listed as Holland Street).

As you will probably remember, Legends is quite close to the junction with Wardour Street. Walking round the block, I think only the blocks on Oxford Street (going back only a relatively short distance judging by where the old building ends on Wardour Street) and along Great Chapel Street are old. There is a large newish building that starts about 10 metres onto Wardour Street that runs right up to Hollen Street. The portion of Hollen Street behind Legends is also new, a loading bay for Legends with shutter doors that seems to correspond to what can be seen in the now empty shop from the Oxford Street side - this makes me think the whole "Allens Court' alley has gone.

I'm surprised how little info I can find on the internet about the alleys shown in the film seeing that they must have been closed off/demolished within the last 30 years or so.

Anyway, the original reason for Emailing was just to offer a suggestion (may be incorrect) re your Blind Date entry:
1. Thames Embankment, Hungerford and Waterloo Bridges in the distance, and also the South Bank shot tower,I think; around which Richard Widmark ran in “Night and the City”; and which I thought was demolished to make way for the South Bank / Festival Hall / Festival of Britain Exhibition in 1951, BUT, the film was made in 1959, so perhaps the shot tower was pulled down for the building of the Shell Centre, a bit later. Who can confirm?
Could it be Bankside power station (Tate Modern), rather than the shot tower?
It is located opposite St Pauls, between Blackfriars and Southwark bridges.
If I can get down to the Embankment at some point and find the right place to photograph it I will, but feel free to pose the question to others who may get opportunity before me!

Keep up the good work,


I'm sure you are correct about the Blind Date views, I live in central Italy, and moved out of London some 20 years ago, so my memory isn't refreshed often enough. Well spotted

Best wishes John Tunstill

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Brief Encounter Locations

Photo 1 on your "Brief Encounter" section, is Willesden Junction.
The mainline platforms have since been removed, so it is no longer possible to take a "now" picture. The suburban side of the station still exists.
I got this information from this video:
It doesn't mention Willesden in the text, but it does in the actuall video. There is also the comment that train drivers complained of being blinded by the intense arc lights, used to create the dramatic, back lit smoke effects in the title sequence.
Regards,Kevin McGowan

Location Confirmation ' Jubilee'

On your 'Jubilee' (punk film shot in London) film page images 2,3 and 4 are taken at Dockhead in Bermondsey next to Shad Thames. James Bond's The World Is Not Enough was also shot there. Pictures 8 and 9 are in Tooley Street at the entrance to Dockhead, facing Sweeney Cresent. See attached map link. Will try to get a picture over the next few weeks to mail you.

Alfie Sykes

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Locations Manchester Films

Hi - Just another fast reply whilst things are 'on the boil' - our site is devoted to solely all the films produced by the Mancunian Film Company.


Off the top of my head here's some information about some of them re locations - Let me know if this is what you're after and I'll get more across to you not only on Mancunian Films but other films made in Manchester as I do run workshops and tours called "Hollywood of the North".

......................It gets better and better!!!

Cup-Tie Honeymoon (1947) - Maine Road Football Ground, Manchester (being demolished - photos on website)

Holidays With Pay (1948) - Dickenson Road/Wilmslow Road in Manchester, all over Blackpool promenade, and a tram ride in Douglas, Isle of Man.

School for Randle (1949) - Schoolyard and classrooms at Xavarian College, Rusholme, entrance to Palace Theatre, Oxford Street, Manchester, Sale Lido

Bella's Birthday (1949) - Exterior Horse & Jockey, Chorlton Green, Manchester M21 (interior studio set at Dickenson Road Studios, Rusholme, Manchester)

Over The Garden Wall (1950) - Exteriors Chortonville Estate, Manchester M21, ballroom sequences at Belle Vue Pleasure Gardens

It's A Grand Life (1953) - Schoolyard at Xavarian College, Rusholme, the Smoker Inn, Plumley, Knutsford, Cheshire, the banks of the River Mersey, Northenden


All the best for your snapping tour,

.........................Have you a phone number?................if we get close.............perhaps we can meet up for afternoon tea, glass of beer, chip butty or what you will.

Chris and Pam

The Plank

Dear Jon,
thanks for your reply ... i have taken some pics of the road the lumberyard is in

Note pic 002 the church in the background

...and in pic 005 street electric box

I am yet to get hold of a copy of the film to see for myself, but appreciate it if anyone can put light on this niggle.

I am taking it that the version referred to is that of the original (b/w?) and not the remake (though both are by Eric Sykes),
cheers again ~ Rich