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Image of Beach Blanket Babylon appears in Woody Allen's You Will Be a Tall Dark Stranger

Beach Blanket Babylon in You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger

Date posted: 01.03.2011

Notting Hill's Beach Blanket Babylon bar and restaurant is renowned for its decadent interiors. As a filming location it has appeared in various film, TV and music productions and can next been seen on the big screen in Woody Allen's fourth London-shot film, You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger, released on Friday 18th March.

Established in 1990, Beach Blanket Babylon occupies a prominent position in a converted Georgian mansion on Ledbury Road in Notting Hill. As an old English mansion, the restaurant comprises of various rooms all interconnected by walkways, tunnels, bridges and staircases. Each space is aptly named and rooms include The Chapel, Gallery, Scullery and Crypt. The bar, in particular, is famed for its unique interior design, blending Versailles opulence with 'Boho' chic and maximalist Baroque and Rococo touches.

As well as hosting parties and premieres for some of the biggest names in music, film, and finance, Beach Blanket Babylon's stunning and distinctive interiors have long been a favourite with feature film and music productions. Mariah Carey shot a music video in the space, whilst T4 used it to film interviews with music stars such as Nelly Furtado, Dizzee Rascal and Alexandra Burke. As a location for a feature film, most recently the bar has been used as in You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger, which Allen shot extensively on location in the capital in summer 2010.

In the film, the protagonist starts an affair with a girl he sees from his rear window. They begin meeting in various places in their neighbourhood with one such encounter shot at the Beach Blanket Babylon. The film's location manager, Michael Harm, attests Beach Blanket Babylon was chosen as it is visually a very interesting space saying that "It oozes atmosphere, and works well for the mis-en-scene in a scene where the main star tries to impress the girl in a romantic space".

Harm described the location as "perfect in itself", with no additional dressing necessary and thus no need to expend the location budget on hiring the space the day before. He also noted the auspicious architecture of the space, with two arches either side of the bar and two aspect windows on the front, "meant that lighting the scene could be done on the day which avoided the requirement of complicated lighting rigs for the ceiling, as well as negating further costs in expensive equipment and lengthy strike times."

During the shoot, the team at Beach Blanket Babylon also became involved in the shoot with some of the waiting staff chosen to feature as extras in the film. "The crew were so respectful and complimentary of the venue it was a great experience for everyone", said Beach Blanket representative, Sadie Brown. 

For filming Enquires at the Restaurant please contact Sadie Brown on 020 7229 2907/sadie@beachblanket.co.uk.

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