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'Eric, Ernie & Me' Commences Filming

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Filming has commenced on a one-off special for BBC Four, looking at the life of Eddie Braben – the comedy scriptwriter behind the success of comedy duo Morecambe and Wise.

The 1x60' programme explores the relationship between Morecambe, Wise and Braben, who became known as The Golden Triangle. For over a decade, Braben penned Morecambe and Wise's material, and reshaped the double act into the Eric and Ernie that the nation took to its heart. However, it wasn't all sunshine. This special will show the pressure and pain that Braben went through to help create the comedy duo's most famous work.

Written by Neil Forsyth and produced by Objective Fiction, 'Eric, Ernie & Me' stars Stephen Tompkinson as Eddie, Mark Bonnar as Eric Morecambe and Neil Maskell as Ernie Wise. Rufus Jones is cast as the double act's long-term producer John Ammonds; Alexander Macqueen as Bill Cotton, BBC's Head of Light Entertainment, and Liz White as Braben's wife Deidree.

The filming is taking place at The Bottle Yard's Studio 6 and at locations across Bristol, including Colston Hall, Mariners Drive in Stoke Bishop, Thingwall Park (Fishponds), The Wills Building (Bedminster), St Annes Board Mills Social Club (Redfield), Brislington United Reformed Church and Filwood Community Centre (Knowle West). Bristol Film Office has assisted the production team with sourcing a host of locations, setting up recces and unit bases.

Alison Sterling, Producer, said: "The presence of the Bottle Yard as a filming resource in Bristol has been an enormous boon to the local film industry. There is a thriving network of really high-quality crew in the region which is helping us in the making of Eric Ernie and Me. Nearly all our crew and equipment are based in the Bristol region and we are delighted also to be able to use locations in the communities of Filwood, Brislington and St Anne's. All the local residents have been exceptionally welcoming."

Fiona Francombe, The Bottle Yard Studios, added: "We're very excited to host this excellent new BBC Four film, featuring such a strong cast headed up by the talented Stephen [Tompkinson] – great to have him back on site after he filmed Trollied here previously. We're equally pleased to see Alison return to the Studios after she produced Katarzyna Klimkiewicz's Flying Blind here in 2012 and line produced Claire Downes' We Can Be Heroes here last year. It's always a joy to see cast and crew returning to work on new projects that can also benefit from strong support provided by the our city's Film Office for location filming."

Natalie Moore, Bristol Film Office, commented: "What could be more intriguing than a look at the relationship behind the success of the nation's favourite double act? We've helped line up a variety of locations for this shoot and it's fantastic to see the many sides of Bristol, from residential Knowle West to the iconic Colston Hall, portraying a 60s and 70s period British setting for a story about one of the most popular comedy duos of all time."

Eric, Ernie & Me was commissioned by Gregor Sharp, Commissioning Editor, BBC Comedy and is produced by Objective Fiction, part of Objective Media Group. The Executive Producers are Ben Farrell and Toby Stevens, with Alison Sterling producing.

Image: (L–R): Neil Maskell, Stephen Tompkinson and Mark Bonnar star in Eric, Ernie & Me (© BBC/Objective Fiction/Natalie Moore).

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