Which Movies Were Filmed in the Lakes?
Arguably the most famous and obvious recent example of the Lake District featuring on the silver screen would be 2018’s Peter Rabbit, starring James Corden as Beatrix Potter’s lovable and mischievous bunny. Windermere and Ambleside are on full show throughout, with a number of nods to Potter’s life also featuring within scenes.
But there are a number of other movies and TV shows also wholly or partly made in the Cumbrian National Park that may surprise even the most ardent screen addict. We’ve had a look at some of our favourites, from the well-known to the completely unexpected!
Possibly the most well-known movie to have been filmed in the Lake District is Miss Potter, starring Renee Zellwegger in the role of the beloved childrens’ writer and illustrator famous for bringing Peter Rabbit to the world, alongside Emily Watson and Ewan McGregor.
Keswick and Derwentwater, the in-story setting of Squirrel Nutkin, Benjamin Bunny, and Mrs Tiggy-Winkle, was among the primary filming locations for the movie, with scenes also shot at Tarn Hows and Yet Tree Farm in Coniston, both once owned by Potter during her life.
28 Days Later
Danny Boyle’s post-apocalyptic horror epic where an incurable virus grips the UK in outbreak is perhaps not all too well known as a ‘Lake District’ movie. This is probably because only the final scenes of the film were shot around Ennerdale at a remote cottage, while the remainder was filmed in London and other parts of the country.
Snow White & The Huntsman
This reimagined fairytale from 2012 stars Charlize Theron and Thor himself, Chris Hemsworth and Kristen Stewart stepping into the role of the fairest in all the land. Our stars pass through Cathedral Cave in Langdale, while other, more panoramic shots were filmed around Blea Tarn. The cast famously stopped in for drinks and food at the Waterage Inn, becoming adopted regulars during filing.
Withnail & I
Brought to the world in 1987, Withnail and I started life as a low budget comedy before attracting a cult following of dedicated fans that continues to grow to this day. Much of the movie, starring Richard E. Grant, was filmed around the Shap and Bampton areas of the region, including Sleddale Hall - a farmhouse on the north side of the Wet Sleddale valley that featured as "Crow Crag", Uncle Monty's Lake District cottage.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
As much as it can feel like our National Park is remote from the large towns and cities further South, we can’t quite claim that we’re on an alien planet. Except of course, when the region is depicted within the Star Wars franchise.
2015 blockbuster The Force Awakens sees X-wings flying over Thirlmere and a Millenium Falcon gliding over Derwentwater, known within the movie as the green and picturesque planet of Takodana. A group of Stormtroopers can be seen attacking towards Borrowdale as resistance pilots fly over Derwentwater.
Other notable movies filmed in the Lake District include the original and remake of Swallows and Amazons, Michael Caine and Ben Kingsley’s 1988 Sherlock and Holmes reboot ‘Without a Clue,’ and British romance ‘Brief Encounter.’ But really, the list isn’t as long as you might imagine. Considering the iconic backdrop of the Lakes scenery, it’s a wonder why movie production trucks don’t frequent the area more often!