Brand new BBC drama The Living and the Dead has begun filming at The Bottle Yard Studios in Bristol.
The six part supernatural drama is the latest in a string of high profile BBC drama titles to shoot at the largest production space in the West of England, including primetime BBC One dramas Poldark and Sherlock and the Emmy-nominated BBC Two drama Wolf Hall.
Created by Ashley Pharoah (Life on Mars, Ashes to Ashes, Moonfleet), The Living and the Dead is directed by Alice Troughton (Cucumber, In The Flesh) and produced by Eliza Mellor (Poldark, Death Comes To Pemberley).
The series’ production team have been in pre-production at the Studios since May. The production will utilise 20,000 sq ft of space for set building of period interiors in The Bottle Yard’s Tank House 4, as well as production offices, prop stores and making all the costumes on-site. Filming will take place at locations across Bristol (supported by Bristol Film Office) and the wider South West.
Producer Eliza Mellor said: “Locally based writer, Ashley Pharoah set his new BBC1 show, The Living and the Dead, in rural Somerset in 1894, so The Bottle Yard Studios seemed the perfect spot for our production. Having been based here last year with Poldark, I knew we could access great crews, and a wide variety of locations within a short distance of the studios, as well as being able to construct our sets on one of their stages and the Bottle Yard team have made us feel very welcome once again.”
Fiona Francombe, Site Director at The Bottle Yard Studios said: “It’s fantastic to welcome The Living and the Dead to The Bottle Yard. We have shown that we can accommodate the complex demands of major dramas in the period genre very successfully, so it’s marvellous to add another highly anticipated, high profile title like this to our credits.
“It’s also great to welcome back to the Studios some familiar faces from previous productions that have filmed with us – producer Eliza Mellor, who made the incredibly successful Poldark with us last year, as well as director Alice Troughton and line producer Kate Dudley, who filmed Frankie here back in 2012.”
Set in 1880’s Somerset, in a land and a community on the edge of monumental change, The Living and the Dead follows Nathan Appleby, a reluctant gentleman farmer who is obsessed with proving the existence of the afterlife. As he investigates hauntings, paranormal happenings, and ghostly visitations, he starts to see and hear disturbing things that he simply cannot have imagined. Will Nathan’s interest in the occult begin to threaten his family, his livelihood and even his sanity?
Colin Morgan (Humans, The Fall, Merlin) plays the lead role of Nathan Appleby, and Charlotte Spencer (Glue, Stonemouth, Line of Duty) plays Charlotte Appleby, Nathan’s wife. Charlotte was BAFTA nominated for Best Supporting Actress in 2015 and Colin won a National Television Award for Most Popular Male Drama Performance in 2013.
The Living and the Dead is a BBC Wales Drama production in association with Monastic Productions and co-produced with BBC America. It will be distributed internationally by BBC Worldwide.