Horror film shot in Yorkshire to hit the big screen next month

A horror film which features several scenes shot in West Yorkshire is due to hit the big screen next month.

A scene from horror film Censor, which will be released in August 2020. Photo courtesy of Magnet Releasing.
A scene from horror film Censor, which will be released in August 2020. Photo courtesy of Magnet Releasing.

Censor, which tells the story of a film censor who sets out to solve the mystery of her sister’s disappearance after watching a disturbingly familiar video, will be released in UK cinemas on August 20.

Written and directed by Prano Bailey-Bond, Censor stars Niamh Algar (Calm with Horses) as the protagonist Enid, Michael Smiley (Kill List and Luther), Nicholas Burns (The World's End) and Yorkshire actor Vincent Franklin (The Thick of It).

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Production company Silver Salt Films has revealed that scenes were shot in Leeds and Bradford over 25 days in autumn 2019.

Niamh Algar in Censor. Photo from Magnet Releasing.

They used woodland areas in Bradford, Keighley & Worth Valley Railway, and converted an empty unit in Pudsey into a 1980s video store, after setting up their production offices at a nearby warehouse.

In the press notes for the film, producer Helen Jones said: “Location was key to the film and we needed to find an area of the UK that could creatively satisfy all the locations required in the film – and the 1985 setting.

“We also required somewhere with experienced crew and suitable equipment and facilities. We settled on the Leeds-Bradford area that really ticked all of the boxes for us.

“The night shoots in the forest were very tough – the weather was bad and on our final night there were severe yellow weather warnings which caused havoc for our cast, art department – and crew in general.

“Luckily everyone pulled together and got the job done – in some ways we were lucky that the worst night was our final night, to motivate everyone to get through it for one final push.”

Ms Bailey-Bond said Censor is set in 1980s Britain, when films released in cinemas were censored due to “an outburst of social hysteria and moral panic".

She added: “You have the backdrop of Thatcher, industrial collapse, job losses. I find it really interesting - you have this rise in crime being reported, probably because there was a lot of poverty, and then there’s VHS and violence in film – the easy scapegoat for what was going on politically.

“There’s a certain hypocrisy there that I find interesting. It poses this idea that as humans we are so afraid of ourselves, like in some people’s minds we are just one step away from becoming a murderer, as though you could just watch a film and your moral compass is completely thrown out of the window.

“Censor was a way to dive into some of these ideas – the idea of the moral compass, and how that fear of ourselves can be the most dangerous thing of all."