Christoper Nolan’s hotly anticipated Tenet hits the big screens this Wednesday and like most of his movies it was shrouded in secrecy during filming in Camden last summer.
Filmed under the working title of Merry Go Round, only those eagle – eyed Christopher Nolan fans would have spotted one of the world’s most revered Directors walking around Hampstead in a full suit and tie on a hot summer’s day.
Squire’s Mount and Canon Place in Hampstead saw a cast and crew of nearly 200 descend on it’s tranquil streets last August for two days of filming with a road closure. The Production used one of the area’s grand historic homes to double as a school. Filming Manager for Camden Film Office Juliet McConnell discusses some of the challenges the Locations Team faced:
“Hampstead is well known for its beautiful tree lined narrow streets and lack of parking (!) which makes it particularly tricky to facilitate a cast and crew of this scale. Part of the Location Team’s job and my job is to walk the course and work out where to fit all their vehicles and equipment in a way that doesn’t obstruct traffic, is close to the location and disrupts residents as little as possible. It’s almost like a game of Tetris! Inevitably a feature like this is going to have to suspend a large amount of parking spaces so Camden Film Office always insists that Productions offer up alternative paid for parking spaces for residents. This Production was more than willing to do this and went the extra mile to keep as much equipment and cast and crew off the street as possible – they hired nearby venues like the Quaker Meeting House and Christ Church Primary School so they could use them as green room and catering space. They also hired the driveways of local residents for extra space to hold cast, crew and equipment”.
Another potential problem was some extensive roadworks taking place just one street away. Juliet goes onto explain:
“It’s not uncommon in London to have works taking place a few streets away from filming which can cause issues both in terms of noise and also, obviously, takes up more valuable parking space for both the Production and for local residents. Camden Highways and Streetworks Team are immensely helpful though and we always manage to find a solution. On this occasion the contractors completed works closest to the filming before it commenced and gave us absolute assurances that they would not be working during the filming”.
As a thank you to the local area the Production donated to the Vale of Health Society (who work towards the conservation and protection of the physical environment in and around the Vale of Health) and the Keats Community Library.
Tenet also unit based on nearby Hampstead Lane in Haringey and Kenwood House.
We would love to tell you more about the scenes they filmed but we’ve been sworn to secrecy. Shhhhh!