Danny Boyle and Richard Curtis’s new Beatles blockbuster to be filmed in Suffolk, possibly starring Ed Sheeran - and you can get involved
- Credit: PA
A hotly-tipped new film based around The Beatles, which is rumoured to star Ed Sheeran, will be shot in Suffolk, publicists have said.
In the latest sign of the burgeoning local movie industry, Working Title Film said it would be shooting in Suffolk and Norfolk to “take advantage of the fantastic locations both counties offer”.
Plot details have yet to be confirmed – though the film is reportedly set to star Suffolk singer Ed in a world where The Beatles never existed,
Made by Slumdog Millionaire director Danny Boyle, in partnership with Richard Curtis, who wrote Four Weddings and a Funeral and owns a home in Suffolk, the film is thought to be titled All You Need is Love.
Working Title Films, which has made more than 100 movies including Fargo, Les Misérables and The Theory of Everything, is yet to confirm whether Ed has signed on the dotted line.
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However, the Mail on Sunday reported he will be making a cameo appearance and providing original music for the soundtrack.
“Everything Ed touches turns to gold,” a source told the paper. “If anyone can make a film about the Beatles’ songs even better musically, it’s him.”
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In an interview with Chris Evans’ BBC Radio 2 breakfast show in January 2017, the singer said Curtis had previously asked to use one of his songs in a film – but Ed decided to keep it after the guitarist John Mayer added a solo to the track.
“I’m going to have to write him another one,” Ed told the show.
Whether or not Ed makes good on his offer, will soon be revealed - as shooting for the film is believed to be starting imminently.
A film publicist said: “We will be shooting in Suffolk and Norfolk, taking advantage of the fantastic locations both counties have to offer.”
The film-makers have not divulged specific locations, however online documents show filming will be taking place in Halesworth Thoroughfare in May.
The choice of Suffolk as a location has been welcomed by the county’s growing film and television industry.
Karen Everett, director at Screen Suffolk, which works to attract film-makers to the county, said she was “very pleased a production of this calibre” is set to be filmed in the county.
“Richard Curtis, being a local, will know the county quite well,” she added.
“Our aim is to see, increasingly, big budget filming based right here, so locals with an interest in the business don’t feel they have to travel too far from home.
“We market Suffolk as offering the quintessential English look, so there’s a real sense of validation when Richard Curtis, the maker of quintessentially English films like Love, Actually, Notting Hill, Four Weddings and a Funeral and so on, decides to shoot here.
“Boden and Cath Kidston are among the many big British brands to adopt the county’s look - but a Richard Curtis production is of course taking it to a new level.”
Screen Suffolk is supporting the production by arranging work placements for young locals looking for experience.
News of filming coming to Suffolk made us think how Beatles songs might be “improved” with the county’s places and pastimes added.
Here’s a top ten:
1) Leiston Be (Let It Be)
2) Here Comes Saxmundham (Here Comes the Sun)
3) Eye am the Walrus (I am the Walrus)
4) From me to Euston (From me to you)
5) I’m Otley Sleeping (I’m Only Sleeping)
6) She Loves Hoo (She Loves You)
7) Woods Lane (Penny Lane)
8) Can’t Tractor Boy Me Love (Can’t Buy Me Love)
9) Magical Minsmere Tour (Magical Mystery Tour)
10) I Want to East Bergholt Your Hand (I Want to Hold Your Hand)
Other chances to see Suffolk on screen
TV and film crews have aimed their cameras at Suffolk for decades – finding it the perfect location for a variety of productions.
In recent years the county has been used for dramas such as Child in Time starring Benedict Cumberbatch, comedy series The Detectorists, crime dramas, and is always remembered as home to Lovejoy.
Crews from the new Jurassic World movie were here, too, recently, and the county’s film heritage is packed with apearances in blockbusters.
In 1987, a squadron of SAS helicopters flew between the legs of the Orwell Bridge in the thriller The Fourth Protocol starring Pierce Brosnan alongside Michael Caine, and Brosnan returned 10 years later to film for the Bond movie Tomorrow Never Dies at RAF Mildenhall.
Iris, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Eyes Wide Shut, Akenfield, and The Witchfinder General are among other film successes.
Ed’s previous screen roles
Suffolk singer Ed Sheeran is becoming a regular fixture on film and television sets.
Not content with dominating the music world, Ed, who grew up in Framlingham, has taken a number of high profile roles in recent years.
His first major film role came in 2016, when the singer played himself for a cameo in Bridget Jones’s Baby – and was praised by his co-star Renee Zellweger, who said he was a “delight” to work with.
The Castle on the Hill singer also appeared as a Lannister soldier for last year’s series seven premiere of fantasy drama Game of Thrones.
The show’s makers said Ed had been chosen as a surprise for Maisie Williams, who plays Ayra Stark and is a fan of the singer. However, his appearance received mixed reviews from fans of the show.
Earlier this year, Ed appeared in The Simpsons’ series 29 premiere episode when he played Lisa’s piano-playing love interest Brendan.