Fresh from starring roles in smash-hit Netflix productions, The Crown and Enola Holmes 2, as well as cinema hit The Extraordinary Life of David Copperfield, Hull is back in the movie spotlight.
Dubbed ‘Hullywood’ thanks to its growing list of TV and movie credits, Oscar-winning director Steve McQueen has become the latest moviemaker to boost the city’s set-jetting credentials.
His new movie Blitz, from streaming giant Apple TV+, tells the story of how Londoners survived the German bombing campaign in World War Two with filming taking place at locations across the city, including Hull Old Town and Hepworth Arcade. Check out the full story here.
So, here’s a look at some of the city’s set-jetting hot spots:
Netflix drama Bodies, which began streaming in October 2023, features several Hull locations. Old Town became Victorian Whitechapel, while the city’s Princes Quay was renamed Stratford Central Shopping Centre for the eight-part series revolving around four different detectives trying to solve murders in different time periods, from the 1890s to 2050. Rising star Amaka Okafor, who plays DS Shahara Hasan, featured in scenes shot in Hull.
Red buses, vintage lampposts and shops given a make-over became 1940s London for the wartime drama movie, which is likely to air sometime in 2024. As well as Old Town and Hull Marina, the city’s Paragon Station was in on the action too, turning the clock back to the days of steam. Stars Saoirse Ronan and Joanna Scanlan were among those spotted taking part in filming.
Photos: Paul Schofield
Hull stood in for wartime London again in October 2022 when scenes for the sixth, and final, season of the hit Netflix show were filmed in the city. Believed to involve flashback scenes set on VE Day in 1945, crews filmed at Hull Guildhall and around Queen Victoria Square and the Ferens Art Gallery. Season six is expected to stream late 2023 or early 2024.
Enola Holmes 2
Superman actor Henry Cavill and award-winning actress Millie Bobby Brown filmed in Hull in 2021 for Enola Holmes 2, which made its eagerly anticipated appearance on Netflix in November 2022. Hull Old Town’s cobbled streets became Victorian London for the follow-up to Enola Holmes, Netflix’s smash hit movie about the sleuthing adventures of the younger sister of an already famous Sherlock Holmes. High Street, Scale Lane, Bishops Lane, and Chapel Lane in Hull’s Old Town were all used for filming.
Photo: Hull Old Town
The Confessions of Frannie Langton
Also in 2021, ITV Studios filmed for this Georgian-era thriller, now showing on ITVX, ITV’s new, free streaming service. Parts of High Street doubled up as London’s Mayfair for the ITV murder mystery, starring Karla-Simone Spence (Blue Story, Wannabe) as Frannie Langton, a woman born into a life of slavery who is fighting to tell her own story.
Photo: Hull Old Town
The Personal History of David Copperfield
Back in 2018, it was Peter Capaldi and Dev Patel who were in the city as director Armando Iannucci filmed scenes for his star-studded comedy drama The Personal History of David Copperfield, which hit cinemas in 2020. The Old Town – which still retains its medieval footprint with a surviving street plan around the original port area on the River Hull – doubled for Dickensian London, with producers impressed with the mix of civic buildings, cobbled streets and architecture.
More royal profile for Hull came courtesy of critically acclaimed historical ITV drama Victoria, with Jenna Coleman as the young Queen, alongside Tom Hughes as Prince Albert. Hull Old Town became 19th century London for both season two and three in 2017.
Photo: Statue of Queen Victoria, Queen Victoria Square, Hull
A Royal Night Out
Among Hull’s other starring roles were scenes for this 2015 movie when the streets of Hull portrayed central London for the story of how the future Queen Elizabeth and her younger sister Margaret joined the street parties celebrating VE-Day in 1945. Various city centre locations were used, including The Guildhall and Princes Dock Street, with familiar Hull landmarks given a wartime makeover.
Photo: Hull Guildhall