The Chew Valley countryside is featured on the big screen in new summer blockbuster The Festival, produced by the BAFTA Award winning creators of The Inbetweeners.
Now on show at cinemas across the UK, and based on a fictional festival, much of the film is set in the Chew Valley which provided a key location as well as The Bottle Yard Studios, parts of Bristol and the surrounding area.
With the help of Bath & North East Somerset Council film office, the production company located key areas in the district for The Festival which is the first comedy feature film release from production company Fudge Park, formed by The Inbetweeners writers and executive producers Iain Morris and Damon Beesley.
It is directed by Iain Morris and written by Keith Akushie and Joe Parham (Siblings) and stars Joe Thomas (The Inbetweeners, Fresh Meat), Hammed Animashaun (Flowers, Black Mirror), Claudia O’Doherty (Love, Trainwreck), Jemaine Clement (Flight of the Conchords, Moana) and Hannah Tointon (Mr Selfridge, The Hour).
Farm land near Compton Martin provided the perfect location for the production to create a large music festival set.
Local residents expressed how much they enjoyed watching the set develop and the amazing amount of work and detail which went into the project.
One resident said “it was quite an experience to witness first hand.”
The council’s Film Office worked with the production when they were scouting for the festival site and other locations needed for the film last year.
Claire Jones, Producer, said: “In producing The Festival, it was crucial for us to have the perfect setting. Locations played a huge part in deciding where we wanted to film.
“The West Country seemed like the right choice. Not only are Bristol crew incredibly skilled, the landscape seemed to fit with the idea of a big music festival.
“We scouted nearly 300 fields and eventually found our field near Chew Magna. With its rolling hills, lush greenness and friendly neighbours, it felt like the perfect fit.
“We built a huge festival set in our field, using local craftsman and local artists that had to withstand the elements for 10 weeks, which became an interesting challenge.
“Storms hit us and our set turned into a lake of mud but as the film needed to feel like a typical British festival we decided that mud and rain could only make it feel more authentic. The end result looks seamless.”
Councillor Paul Myers, cabinet member for Economy and Community Regeneration, added: “Filming brings substantial economic benefits and while many productions have filmed in Bath over the years it is great to see the beautiful countryside of North East Somerset on the big screen.”