Brontëana Exclusive: Behind the Scenes of Jane Eyre 2006
While I was offline writing a post for today (about an early recording of Jane Eyre: The Musical) Brontëana reader Vairë sent me a most interesting email! She obtained permission to pass along this report from a visitor to Haddon Hall. Louise from Manchester visited the hall on Sunday, during an ‘off-shooting day’ and had quite a time looking around the set. Here is her full report as passed along to me:
She was invited back for shooting as well. She gave me permission to send this report on to you, which has not been seen on the net so far.
“It’s a place called Haddon Hall in Derbyshire which is a Medival/Tudor stately home. The man in the gatehouse was wonderful and showed me a list of all the television and film productions that had used the Hall so far (including last years Pride and Prejudice with Kiera Knightley). He showed me articles from all the local newspapers and recommended that I should speak to one of the staff inside for more information. I went inside and asked a member of staff if she had any photographs she could show me and she showed me a WONDERFUL photograph of the house on fire and explained how it was done with pyrotechnics and she also showed me the huge red sign they have to put up during the week that says BBC PRODUCTION. FILMING IN PROGRESS.
Then I went inside and had a look around the house itself and one of the rooms had been altered by the BBC production team to look like Mr Rochester’s library. It was amazing. The right hand wall was simply bookcases FULL of old looking genuine books (except all the books on the bottom two shelves – they’re just book fronts). There were two tables in the centre of the room, an large chair in the far corner of the room and what looked like some sort of writing instrument on one of the tables. In a little alcove section of the room where the windows were a round table and chairs stood next a blackboard. Some of the writing had been wiped off but I could make out the words “Miss Grey” and “ettiquete.”I then spoke to another member of staff about her experiences on set. She described how the staff were watching the scene where Bertha throws herself from the tower and how the stunt crew set up a giant inflatable and the stunt woman actually threw herself from the tower of Haddon Hall!
She also described what a wonderful group of people the cast were and how “the darling little girl, Georgie, who plays young Jane, is a pleasure to be around”. She also mentioned how Haddon Hall was particuarly close to “the young girl fresh out of drama school who plays Jane” because her brother has recently married a local girl from that area.She also mentioned that Pam Ferris’ character of Lady Ingrim seems to spend a lot of time in the kitchen. And how long and throughly tedious the filming process was and how they were lucky to get 2 scenes shot during a 7 hour day.
“the ruins shot is NOT being digitally remastered. They did indeed film in ruins but I can’t remember the name. It’s close to Haddon Hall where they are currently filming now and have been for quite some time.I’m not sure how much longer they’re shooting for. I think it’s going to be quite a while – the English weather isn’t being very helpful and it’s a very slow filming process.”
She also plans to return this week and try to get pictures. Thank you for sharing this with us all, and I think it would be fair to say that a few hundred people are wishing you luck in getting back there and getting some pictures! Great job! And thanks again to Vairë for obtaining publishing permission for me.