Dev Patel film shot in Hull's Old Town - premiere date announced

Dev Patel as David Copperfield. Courtesy of Lionsgate UK.
Dev Patel as David Copperfield. Courtesy of Lionsgate UK.

The premiere date for a star-studded film partly shot on the streets of Hull has been announced.

The 63rd BFI London Film Festival will open by hosting the first European showing of director Armando Iannucci's The Personal History of David Copperfield on Wednesday October 2 at Odeon Luxe, Leicester Square.

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Featuring stars such as Dev Patel as the Charles Dickens character, as well as Hugh Laurie, Tilda Swinton and Paul Whitehouse, the fresh take on the novelist's classic story is set to include some of his most cherished creations.

In July last year, Hull's Old Town was transformed to look like 1840 London, with filming on location around Princes Street and Land of Green Ginger.

The film will be released by Lionsgate UK and is a FilmNation Entertainment and Film4 Production.

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An avid Dickens fan, Iannucci - the award-winning writer/director of The Thick of It, In the Loop, Veep and The Death of Stalin - has worked alongside frequent collaborator Simon Blackwell, employing his "comedic mastery" to create the film.

From birth to adulthood, the good-hearted David Copperfield is surrounded by kindness, wickedness, poverty and wealth, as he meets an array of remarkable characters in Victorian England.

Iannucci said: “It’s a huge thrill and honour to be asked to open the fantastic BFI London Film Festival. The Personal History of David Copperfield is a film about compassion, humour, generosity and friendship, and I couldn’t have asked for a more welcoming setting in which to premiere it.”

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Tricia Tuttle, BFI London Film Festival director said: “Scotland’s Armando Iannucci is one of the most prodigiously talented and original filmmakers hailing from the UK.

"The Personal History of David Copperfield shows his trademark wit and a joyous sense of style — it’s a delight from start to finish, with Dev Patel and co-stars delivering performances of megawatt charm and comic flair. I’m so excited to be opening the 63rd BFI London Film Festival with this film which is not only wildly entertaining but also a timely celebration of the power of generosity and compassion.”

Shot on location in the UK, the film is produced by Kevin Loader and Iannucci and also stars Peter Capaldi, Ben Whishaw, Aneurin Barnard, Daisy May Cooper, Morfydd Clark, Benedict Wong, Gwendoline Christie, Anthony Welsh and Rosalind Eleazar.

Suzie Harman and Robert Worley served as costume designers, Cristina Casali as production designer, Christopher Willis as composer and Karen Hartley-Thomas as hair and make-up designer.