Release date announced for new film which was shot in Suffolk
PUBLISHED: 19:32 17 July 2019 | UPDATED: 09:17 18 July 2019
Tourism bosses in Bury St Edmunds are hoping for a big boost to the town's visitors, after the release date for Armando Iannucci's new Suffolk-filmed flick has been announced.
The veteran comedy writer and director brought the production for his new film, The Personal History of David Copperfield to Bury for a week last summer, transforming the Angel Hill into Victorian London.
Now, the British Film Institute has announced the movie's premiere will be opening its London Film Festival on October 2 at Leicester Square - and tourism chiefs are hoping it will bring film fans flocking to the area.
Sue Warren, from Bury St Edmunds and Beyond - the official tourism office, said: "The filming last July in Bury St Edmunds was incredibly exciting to watch for both residents and visitors.
"The crew completely transformed the areas in front of The Angel Hotel and Chequers Square and the wonderful sight of horse and carriages on Angel Hill and Crown Street was like taking a step back in time.
"The day after the filming I spotted tourists taking photos of Chequer Square and we hope that even more visitors will come to beautiful Bury St Edmunds to see the locations where the movie was filmed once it hits the big screen."
The Angel is no stranger to the work of Charles Dickens, having hosted the author when he was a journalist and for readings of his classic novels.
The hotel also gets a mention in his debut novel The Pickwick Papers.
Film tourism is increasingly becoming big business in the UK, with Suffolk having already experienced it with BBC series Detectorists in Framlingham.
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Jim Horsfield from Screen Suffolk, said the production spent more than £82,000 in Bury alone on accommodation, location fees and catering among others, and helped secure local talent their first big break in the industry as location marshals.
He added: "We are delighted that this has been announced for release this year and follows on from the current box office hit Yesterday which is having a fantastic run at the box office.
"Having two blockbuster films that showcase the county, released within six months of each other, demonstrates that we are open and ready for filming in Suffolk.
"We can welcome TV productions with small crews right through to multi-million dollar budget films.
"We are delighted that Suffolk's beautiful locations and landscapes get to shine once again on the big screen.
"This could have only have happened with the foresight and support of all the councils in Suffolk enabling Screen Suffolk to be created to capitalise on opportunities such as this."
The film features a crop of top British talent, including Dev Patel, Hugh Laurie, Tilda Swinton, Peter Capaldi, Paul Whitehouse, Ben Whishaw and Gwendoline Christie.
Councillor Susan Glossop, West Suffolk Council's cabinet member for growth said: "Once again West Suffolk will be on the big screen and millions of people get the chance to see our beautiful area.
"We and other councils across Suffolk work with Screen Suffolk to encourage the film and television industry to bring filming to the county.
"Not only does it support the local film industry, but other businesses and tourism.
"It is estimated that the few days of filming in Bury St Edmunds for The Personal History of David Copperfield generated a £82,500 boost to the local economy and hopefully will encourage more people to visit and stay."