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Parliament Opens Doors to Filming

Date posted: 05.03.2014

In April 2014, the House of Commons will welcome the production of a new British feature film Suffragette, with an all-star cast including Meryl Streep, Carey Mulligan and Helena Bonham Carter.

With assistance and support from Film London, as well as location managers Vinnie Jassal, Nick Daubeny, Harriet Lawrence and the National Trust, the Palace of Westminster has decided to allow appropriate commercial filming on the Estate when the House is not sitting. Suffragette is the first commercial filming proposal to be taken forward in the iconic location, and will serve as a pilot for any future proposals.

Film-Friendly House

An exciting new location with serious potential to enhance London's presence on screen, the iconic building is sure to capture the imagination of Hollywood and more.

"London is one of the most popular filming destinations in the world and the production industries are a vital driver for our economy and support thousands of jobs," says Adrian Wootton, Chief Executive of Film London and the British Film Commission.

"Opening up such an iconic location as the House of Commons for filming is fantastic news. This unique location promises to attract more production to the capital, and by working with the industry and our partners, we will help ensure it can get the most out of filming, while protecting the integrity of this very special building."

Commercial filming aims to generate income to offset the running costs of the House of Commons. All commercial filming proposals will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Suffragette

Shooting is already underway for the period drama on the history of the campaign for enfranchisement of women in Britain.

Directed by Sarah Gavron (Brick Lane) and based on a script by Abi Morgan (Brick Lane, The Iron Lady), Suffragette also stars Brendan Gleeson and Anne-Marie Duff.

"Our film is inspired by the true stories of the foot soldiers of the suffragette movement, women who were willing to sacrifice everything in their fight for the right to vote," says Gavron. "We are honoured to be allowed to recreate a crucial moment in that long journey towards equality by filming where the suffragettes actually brought their protest over 100 years ago."

"As a British film which clearly relates to Parliament's history and heritage, this is an ideal pilot for the House of Commons to identify the opportunities for location filming and income generation," Sir Alan Haselhurst MP, Chair of the House of Commons Administration Committee. "We hope the film will engage the public with Parliament's history and heritage, and will offer a new way to bring our iconic buildings to a wider audience."

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