Weston Street in Sky advert
Date posted: 01.07.2009
Sky TV's commercial for the forthcoming Ashes series sees the Aussies 'taking over London' in a humorous look at the upcoming cricket season. Some of the new additions to the capital include sharks swimming in the fountains of Trafalgar Square, a member of The Queen's Guard holding a surfboard and kangaroos hijacking a zebra crossing.
The Ashes is a test cricket series played biennially between England and Australia. The name originates from the first time that England lost to Australia at home in 1882. The following day the Sporting Times newspaper published a mock obituary to English cricket, joking that "the body will be cremated and the ashes taken to Australia". The series has since become a long standing rivalry between the two nations over possession of these 'ashes', and since 1998 an urn-shaped trophy has been presented to the winners of the tournament.
This year the Ashes start on 8 July and run through to August. In advance of the infamous cricket season, Sky TV has already begun broadcasting the commercial.
The quiet road of Weston Street falls in the Borough of Southwark - with its zebra crossing, it was ideal for the shoot. Location Manager, Angus Light, explains: "The brief we received for this location was 'a zebra crossing within an urban setting that could be anywhere in the UK'. Although the Kangaroo was to be shot against green screen in a studio we still required a road location that would give us a large amount of control.'
'When I discussed this with my colleague, Nick Williams, our initial thought was to look around the edge of the City, but this would have involved filming on a weekend - which wasn't possible. We felt the only real alternative for weekday shooting on urban roads, with this brief, would be around Southwark.'
The Film Office was able to successfully liaise with all parties, including the Resident's Association for the Kipling Estate and the relevant people from the housing office. Karen Everett from Southwark Film Office says: 'We knew there was a good level of trust between all the participants. A couple of phone calls, a site meeting, and we had the whole thing sorted out. This is not rocket science, its good old-fashioned communication'.
The shoot required some parking suspensions to keep a clear view for the plate shot, but this was kept to a minimum by making use of Southwark's 'magic permits' for technical vehicles - which allow for unrestricted parking at any time.
Angus was very satisfied with the end result: 'The filming went very well and the local residents had no objections to the parking suspensions we put in place. We used the Leathermarket for catering, and facilities were on the same street - so very convenient. All in all - a pretty easy location to shoot.'
For filming enquiries at Southwark - please contact Andy Pavord or Karen Everett on 0845 833 1523 or email email@example.com.