Six part comedy thriller written and directed by Stephen Merchant, starring Christopher Walken, Stephen Merchant, Rhianne Barreto, Gamba Cole, Darren Boyd, Clare Perkins, Eleanor Tomlinson, Jessica Gunning and Charles Babalola. The Outlaws follows seven strangers from different walks of life forced together to complete a Community Payback sentence in Bristol.
Production headquarters were based at The Bottle Yard Studios where sets were built for key interiors, including the home of the daughter of “twinkly-eyed small-time crook” Frank (Christopher Walken), offices of family business “Halloran & Son”, led by “right-wing blowhard businessman” John Halloran (Darren Boyd); the probation offices where the seven outlaws meet; police cells and interview rooms.
Bristol Film Office assisted the production to secure Sea Mills Community Centre as its main city location, decorated for the role by Bristolian graffiti artist ‘Inkie’. The team also assisted filming at a large number of Bristol locations throughout the two series shoot which lasted more than 18 months in 2020-21, a period that was lengthened due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Producer Nickie Sault says: “After the very first national lock down happened in March 2020, the co-operation and support from both the Bristol Film Office and The Bottle Yard Studios was integral to us being able to remount our show and come back both safely and stronger than ever. We were only 12 days into shooting Series 1 of The Outlaws when we had to shut down.
“When we started filming Series 1, we were firmly planning to shoot everything on location, we had no plans to build any sets at all. But during the lockdown Series 2 was commissioned, so when we came back up we came back with not just six but 12 hours of TV. Due to Covid, for safety, we made the decision to build most of our locations at the studios instead of shooting live on location. The Bottle Yard Studios and Bristol Film Office could not have been more flexible and more supportive to our ever-changing circumstances. I would return to shoot in Bristol in a heartbeat.”