Benedict Cumberbatch didn’t have to travel too far from home to shoot some of the most thrilling Doctor Strange sequences.
CityPoint in Islington’s Ropemaker Street, just on the edge of the city, doubles as a New York building for some amazing video effects scenes.
And in exchange, the Hollywood blockbuster made a donation to local charity The Word Festival.
In February this year, 200 cast and crew filmed the sequences, with the bustle of actors in the streets and moving cars, and with help of four officer from the Met Police Film Unit to make sure all went smoothly.
Across the river, the historic Caroline Gardens Chapel in Southwark was used, by a
cast and crew of 150. To thank local residents of the former almshouses around the chapel, the filmmakers invited everyone to lunch.
Tony Murphy on the Film Committee for the Caroline Gardens Residents Association said, “They asked what we would like to eat, and we all said fish and chips. So they put on a fish and chips lunch for 101 of us at the Cypriot Centre on the edge of the estate.
“A lot of our residents are a bit old and lonely, so this was just a brilliant thing for them to come out for. It was a real treat. We were so pleased the filmmakers did it for everyone.
“On top this, they gave us a donation – and we split it evenly as cash to every household on the estate.”
Mr Murphy popped over to watch the filming. He said, “It was really interesting. The team were so polite, we couldn’t fault them. Really nice. They’re so professional – nothing’s ever out of place. They do a really good job.”
Mr Murphy is becoming an old hand among A-listers – having loaned his home to Tommy Lee Jones a couple of years ago while he was filming Criminal (in 2014).
“He used my placed as a green room because he didn’t like the trailer,” Mr Murphy said. “I met him, he was very nice. He really liked my dog. (Mr Murphy’s dog is a Staffordshire bull terrier called Roxy). He said he got along with Roxy because he came from a farm with loads of animals.
“I really enjoyed having him around.”
The film’s opening on October 25th. Take a look at the trailer here.