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23/05/2005

Jersey to host major film production

Channel Television and Jersey Tourism have secured the opportunity for Jersey to host a film production of Thomas Hardy’s 'Under The Greenwoood Tree'.
Ecosse Films, who made the announcement, are an independent production company who have been commissioned by ITV1 to adapt Hardy’s novel and have chosen to film the production entirely in Jersey.
The two-hour drama is to be broadcast this December as ITV1’s Christmas film. It will feature Hamptonne Country Life Museum, St Ouen’s Manor, St Brelade’s Church and several other locations including the island’s beaches, cliffs and countryside.
Jeremy Gwilt is the producer and has previously been responsible for several major television productions including 'Like Father like Son', 'House of Elliott', 'Monarch of the Glen' and, most recently, ITV1’s successful drama 'Heartless' featuring Angus Deayton.
It has been confirmed that Keeley Hawes will lead the cast. Keeley starred in BBC dramas 'Spooks' and 'Tipping the Velvet'.
Jeremy Gwilt said: “The integrity of Jersey’s natural and unspoilt landscape, coupled with the visual possibilities of the Country Life Museum at Hamptonne, made the island an irresistible prospect. Crucial to my decision to bring this production to Jersey was the offer of funds of £50,000 from Jersey Tourism together with the use of the Jersey College for Girls building as a production base and full location support from Channel Television.”
Channel Television’s Managing Director Michael Lucas said: “Our London operation has close links with Ecosse Films and when we heard they had been commissioned to make Under The Greenwood Tree we worked hard to encourage them to bring the filming to Jersey. This is a great coup – ITV’s Christmas drama will be screened right across Britain in peak time. It is guaranteed to attract an audience of millions. The production will spend £300,000 within the local economy during filming; it will create some job opportunities and raise the profile of the islands in the minds of British people for next year’s holidays.”
(GB)
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