Behind the scenes on Wolf Hall

This is the flashback scene of Thomas
Cromwell in his youth. His father works as a blacksmith. There’s a fight between his father and himself and it
colours his actions in the future. The location has to be accurate for the script first, so it has to have all the correct rooms, the look, the feel, and then there are those boring practical things that are also highly important like parking. Accessibility. We’re filming over 17 weeks. Being available. We have to ensure, in the
location department, that we keep it tidy, clean, protected. We’re filming in, I think, six National Trust properties. From the production design point of view it
is five hundred years old, and feels five hundred years old and looks five hundred years old. Whereas if you’re building sets, 3-4 weeks before you film, however much
distressing you do, it’s difficult to give it that lived in feel that feels
authentic. It helps bringing a realness to the project which is something that’s very much at the heart of Hilary’s books. People forget we have to do the sort of things like leave the lawn uncut for two weeks which
is really interesting because people wouldn’t necessarily think, we don’t want striped lawns in the Tudor
period. When you’ve got 15-20 lorries turning up, in and out, crew, all sorts going on. It’s a big operation They’re actually using the majority of the house for the shooting. In fact there’s only five rooms in the house
which aren’t being used, so this particular room we’re in now, the Fettiplace Room, will actually be Jane Seymour’s bedroom. All of the National Trust collection
has been removed, so it’ll be those with a very keen eye who
recognise the house. Everywhere we went we’ve had to take all the furniture and paintings out of every house, replace it with our own dressing, and
then put everything back. When you’re filming in the gardens, both the gardens are beautiful, but you get this amazing setting of the building in the
background and you can see all of that. So, although the interior is lovely, for me being outside in the garden is my special thing. This is my idea of what I thought Wolf Hall would be like.


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