Southwark’s Daphne has all the critics talking

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You can say what you like about Daphne, and the critics have a lot to say about her, she’s unmistakably a Londoner; more specifically, a Southwark girl.

The Financial Times, Hollywood Reporter, Guardian, Telegraph, Evening Standard, Independent and Variety are just a handful of the many titles talking about the movie.

The directorial debut by Peter Mackie Burns was filmed almost entirely in the central London borough, where his production made a point of offering local young people experience on the shoot. It opens today.

FilmFixer manages the film office service for Southwark Council. FilmFixer director Andrew Pavord says, “From the scenes of Daphne walking through East Street market, to her job in the Electric Elephant Café, her home in Orb Street, and her pub antics in The Flying Dutchman, this film is unmistakably about the ambiguous nature of Southwark life.

“Many of the shots, looking down at Elephant and Castle, sunsets behind the cityscape and others were filmed from the rooftop of Albert Barnes House. Burgess Park and Nursery Row Park also provide a breather from the frenetic city streets.”

Southwark Council provided a lot of assistance in making these essential locations available. The movie was shot in February last year, mainly on hand-held cameras, with no more 25 cast and crew for every scene.

“It was a delight to get behind this production. Their method of filming was extremely efficient and unobtrusive, and captured the pace of Daphne’s lifestyle very effectively.

“We were delighted when the production went out of its way to offer opportunities to local young people. We worked with the Notting Hill Housing Trust to make placements available to young residents on the Aylesbury Estate, creating one role alongside the assistant director and two others with the marshals.”

Andrew Pavord says Southwark should be proud of its role in this film that’s attracted so much interest, not only because of its compelling star Emily Beecham, but also its unsentimental take on inner London life.

The scenes in and around the Electric Elephant Café on Crampton Street make great use of its environment, including the cobble-stoned yard outside, and its proximity to the busy Walworth Road.

Andrew Pavord adds, “Aside from her rather colourful private life, and less than happy work life, we see Daphne avoiding chuggers, nipping in and out of Elephant and Castle tube station, pushing her way to the front of the bus queue on Southwark Bridge Road, snogging a guy she’s met outside the Kings Arms pub on Newcomen Street, buying chicken in Maxy’s burger shop on the Old Kent Road and jumping out of a cab on Wells Way. These every day acts, of life in Southwark, will feel very familiar to London audiences.”

Peckham Road, Albany Road, Heygate Street, Rodney Road, Newington Causeway and Thurlow Street are all seen, along with a house on Trinity Church Square.

Just one location was outside the borough. Daphne’s sessions with her therapist were filmed in Haringey on Mount View Road.

Andrew Pavord says, “As Hollywood style productions continue to beat a path to the capital, Daphne’s a brilliant example of low-budget filmmaking about London, made in London, working closely with Londoners, and producing a highly successful product. We’re thrilled to see that it’s caught the attention of critics up and down the country.”