Brand new BBC One drama The Pale Horse, which features an all-star cast that includes Rufus Sewell and Kaya Scoledario, has wrapped filming at The Bottle Yard Studios following a shoot that has used a host of locations in Bristol and the nearby Cotswolds area.
“It’s a fantastic endorsement when companies return with brand new productions. After five years of making Poldark at The Bottle Yard, we’ve been delighted to have welcomed Mammoth Screen back for two new titles: The Pale Horse for the BBC and Invisible, the detective drama currently filming for ITV. Repeat bookings like this prove how highly producers regard the strong infrastructure available here in Bristol City of Film.” – Fiona Francombe, Site Director of The Bottle Yard Studios
The two-part drama produced by Mammoth Screen and Agatha Christie Limited for BBC One is adapted from the 1961 Agatha Christie novel of the same name by Sarah Phelps. It began filming earlier this summer, with production headquarters at The Bottle Yard Studios and location support provided by Bristol Film Office.
A major Chelsea apartment set was built at the Studios where a large proportion of filming took place, whilst the six week shoot also used a host of Bristol locations to create a backdrop of 1960’s London. Frogmore Street and Cave Street double as the East End, Denmark Street stands in for the Soho district, properties overlooking St Nicholas market were brought to life as period police station interiors, Queen’s Square doubles as a Chelsea apartment block and Clifton Village’s picturesque West Mall doubles as the Capital’s iconic King’s Road.
Further afield, the picturesque Cotswolds village of Bisley near Stroud was transformed into the the fictional village of Much Deeping where Christie’s original novel is set. Three days of filming took place in the village, with The Bear Inn providing the setting for The Pale Horse, the pub where the trio of alleged witches are said to have plotted a number of deaths.
“Having based Poldark here for 5 years, Mammoth Screen already knew about the professional excellence provided by local crew, the variety and beauty of locations found in the city and the region, the excellent facilities and staff at The Bottle Yard and the unparalleled help and expertise proffered by the Bristol Film Office and Bristol City Council. It’s because of all these invaluable assets that Mammoth have returned to their home-away-from-home to shoot this flagship drama for BBC One.” – Line Producer Benjamin Greenacre
The Pale Horse follows Mark Easterbrook as he tries to uncover the mystery of a list of names found in the shoe of a dead woman. His investigation leads him to the peculiar village of Much Deeping, and The Pale Horse, the home of a trio of rumoured witches. Word has it that the witches can do away with wealthy relatives by means of the dark arts, but as the bodies mount up, Mark is certain there has to be a rational explanation.
The drama features a cast led by Rufus Sewell who plays Mark Easterbrook and is joined by Kaya Scodelario playing Hermia, Bertie Carvel as Zachariah Osborne, Sean Pertwee as Detective Inspector Lejeune, Henry Lloyd-Hughes as David Ardingly, and Poppy Gilbert as Thomasina Tuckerton, Madeleine Bowyer as Jessie Davis and Ellen Robertson as Poppy.Sarah Woodward, Georgina Campbell and Claire Skinner also star.
Completing the cast are Rita Tushingham as Bella, Sheila Atim as Thryza Grey and Kathy Kiera Clarke as Sybil Stamford who will play the trio of witches. The Pale Horse marks the fifth Agatha Christie adaptation penned by Sarah Phelps, following previous titles And Then There Were None, The Witness for the Prosecution, The ABC Murders and Ordeal by Innocence.
“Bristol should take pride that it has become a centre of excellence for High End TV drama; it is as strong an option for filming as London ever was and is now the front runner amongst the regional production bases such as Manchester or Cardiff. It’s been a pleasure to shoot The Pale Horse in Bristol and I’m sure that everyone will enjoy watching it and spotting familiar locations recast as London landmarks.” – Line Producer Benjamin Greenacre