Chairman Pip's Railway Thoughts

“…as it crumbles.”

Posted in London, Media, Other general stuff about railways by Chairman Pip on 31 October 2012

How much did you all enjoy Skyfall then? I certainly breathed a sigh of relief that it was significantly better than Quantum of Solace, and I was also pleased that the end had been kept so quiet by the producers. I won’t spoil it for those that might not have seen it yet, but suffice it to say I didn’t see it coming. Not to mention it was the first James Bond film to make major use of London as a featured location in the film itself, with a significant sequence taking place in the Underground. Naturally though, my keen eye spotted certain things about the sequence that only those of us with an eye for this sort of thing would pay attention to. Like the fact that the sequence was supposed to revolve around the bad guy escaping by jumping onto the District Line at Temple. The District Line that uses 1996 Stock apparently. Of course, we all know that it doesn’t, because it would be incredibly difficult to film on the actual District Line for any length of time without shutting it down, causing massive disruption. So, the actual filming of the scenes on station platforms involving trains were done on the now disused Jubilee Line platforms at Charing Cross, which are still used as turnbacks for trains that terminate at Green Park. However, this got me to thinking about how the Tube is filmed when called for, in terms of how much the network can actually be used. There are of course closed off areas that can be used, such as Charing Cross’ Jubilee Line platforms, or the Waterloo & City Line on Sundays (which saw Waterloo doubling as a District Line station in Sliding Doors), but it is often the case that it is just to constrictive and restrictive to get all of the necessary equipment to and from the station platforms at somewhere like Aldwych, particularly if it is a large and complex production. As an example, Die Another Day featured a sequence at the fictional Vauxhall Cross station. The designers did a lot of research at Aldwych, but the actual Vauxhall Cross was a set built at Pinewood. This is understandable as it would probably have been quite difficult to get a trolley with an Aston Martin Vanquish on it up the tunnel from Holborn. However, many is the time that Aldwych, which has no working lifts, has seen crews having to lug camera and sound equipment all the way down the stairs, and so having the money to build your own makes life a lot easier.

“‘Skyfall’ Set Visit: The Catacomb Confrontation Between Bond and Bardem, and One Near-Literal Meaning of the Film’s Title”

I’m sure there are times many commuters feel like doing this

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