Hundreds of zombies shuffling through central London, military personnel tearing up to Tower Bridge in boats, helicopters: it sounds like an expensive film to make – but not so.
FilmFixer supported independent production Redcon-1 in getting its tiny budget production shot across the capital and in Suffolk, through sound advice and an inside knowledge about appropriate locations. Take a look at the trailer for the zombie action horror flick, in cinemas from today. Producer Ioanna Karavela says, “The movie looks like it cost so much more to make than it really did. There were lots of tips and tricks that we have to thank FilmFixer for.
“We would start very early in the morning, at dawn pretty much, to shoot iconic locations like Potters Fields Park and Butlers Wharf along the Thames at Bankside, and the Albert Embankment overlooking the Houses of Parliament in Lambeth. We took a tiny crew and had the cast all made up and ready to go. This meant we could film very quickly without disturbing anyone or needing to organise loads of parking.
“With just three crew, we also filmed lots of general views around London, and then cut them into scenes filmed elsewhere, so the movie gives the impression that a big cast shot complicated scenes in the capital.
“It looks like we filmed the boat scenes along the Thames, landing at Bankside, but actually they were shot outside London. And it was the same with the helicopter shots. It all looks fantastic in the final cut.
“We did manage to take 130 cast and crew into the Silwood Estate in Southwark. Eight special forces soldiers edge toward Silwood. From a distance they think that the residents are healthy, but as they approach it becomes clear they are zombies.
“We found the extras in zombie fan clubs who were all excited to be in a movie, so they came along and helped us out.
“We filmed in the Old Town Hall in Bromley for three days, which played the headquarters of the character General Smith. As well as the military backdrop, we used it for scenes showing experiments on patients, as well as a prison cell, and a shop. It’s a fantastic space to film in.
“Still in London, we also used Lewisham Shopping Centre.
“We’d filmed a load of footage in a field, and had to do some pick up shots. The problem was, our original field had changed colour with the seasons, so we needed to find somewhere else that might match.
“This was when we contacted Screen Suffolk, who put us in touch with a private location. Mike Porter at Hillhouse Farm in Walpole took really good care of us. We were so grateful for the help.”
Director Chee Keong Cheung has said, “Some years ago I wondered what would happen if zombies could retain some of their previous life skills… What if they were combat based? And how would a small troop of soldiers survive being sent into the heart of a seething mass of the undead, who don’t just bite… they fight back too.” And so began the journey toward making the film.
Take a look at the behind the scenes London footage.
FilmFixer manages the film office service for Southwark, Lambeth, Lewisham and Bromley councils.
FilmFixer CEO Karen Everett says, “We helped the production with 10 key film days between August 2016 and April 2017.
:It’s to their credit that the production managed to get such a complicated film shot on its tiny budget. We would emphasise that this type of filming was possible thanks to the production’s absolute respect for our guidance.
“They turned up exactly when and where we suggested, without any unexpected vehicles, cast or crew, filming just what they needed without causing any problems. We were happy to help. And we’re really happy they have so many screenings arranged, particularly in the lead up to Halloween.”
For cinema screenings, take a look here.