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Bury St Edmunds tourism bosses hope The Personal History of David Copperfield will boost visitor numbers as film's premiere date set




Bury St Edmunds is to grace the silver screen at the London Film Festival with the European premiere of a star-studded adaptation of a Charles Dickens classic which was shot in the town.

The Personal History of David Copperfield, starring Dev Patel and billed as a ‘fresh and distinctive take’ on Dickens’ semi-autobiographical tale, will open the festival on October 2 at Odeon Luxe, in Leicester Square.

Tourism bosses in Bury hope it will boost visitor numbers as scenes from the movie were shot in and around Angel Hill, Athenaeum Lane and Chequer Square as well as inside The Theatre Royal last July.

Dev Patel in The Personal History of David Copperfield. He is pictured in Churchgate Street, Bury St Edmunds. Picture courtesy of Lionsgate UK
Dev Patel in The Personal History of David Copperfield. He is pictured in Churchgate Street, Bury St Edmunds. Picture courtesy of Lionsgate UK

Sue Warren, brand and marketing manager for Bury St Edmunds and Beyond, said: “The filming last July was incredibly exciting to watch for both residents and visitors.

“The crew completely transformed the areas in front of The Angel Hotel and Chequer Square and the wonderful sight of horse and carriages on Angel Hill and Crown Street was like taking a step back in time.

“The day after filming I spotted tourists taking photos of Chequer Square and we hope that even more visitors will come to beautiful Bury St Edmunds to see the locations where the movie was filmed once it hits the big screen.”

She added that they were ‘particularly thrilled’ Bury is featured in the film as Dickens visited the town three times and stayed at The Angel Hotel.

The five days in Bury for the film’s shoot resulted in £82,500 being spent locally, including location fees, hotels, local crew, and in restaurants and cafes, according to figures presented to the Suffolk Public Sector Leaders group.

The day after filming I spotted tourists taking photos of Chequer Square and we hope that even more visitors will come to beautiful Bury St Edmunds - Sue Warren

Directed by Armando Iannucci, the film also stars Tilda Swinton, Hugh Laurie, Peter Capaldi and Ben Whishaw.

Armando said: “The Personal History of David Copperfield is a film about compassion, humour, generosity and friendship and I couldn’t have asked for a more welcoming setting in which to premiere it.”

A spokeswoman for Lionsgate UK said although they have not set a release date yet, it will be in December/January.



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