Where the Duke of York Lived

May 5, 2011 at 9:09 pm (estates) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

As mentioned in an early post <fit for a queen> the family of the Duke of York (the future George VI, his wife Elizabeth and daughters Elizabeth and Margaret Rose) inhabited No 145 Piccadilly. The release of THE KING’S SPEECH (with Colin Firth as the Duke and Geoffrey Rush as Lionel Logue) on DVD gives the opportunity of “revisiting” this house (although it no longer exists). Here it is, as depicted in the film:

While the Drummond Smiths lived at No 144 Piccadilly, Drummond’s brother and sister-in-law, the Smith-Burgesses, lived at No 145!

Here are a couple images I’ve managed to unearth of the real “royal residence” at No 145. This first is young little Princess Elizabeth: 

This link is to news reel footage, where the King and Queen are entering then exiting the premises.

Obviously, though, the film crew used some building. And guess which they happened to choose? No. 33 PORTLAND PLACE! The Very Street upon which the Smiths & Goslings once lived! The film has more to show than JUST in the exterior: the Georgian interior AS WELL AS the fabulous consultation rooms of Lionel Logue were filmed at No. 33!

 

When you see a shot like this, looking down all levels of the staircase, you no longer have to imagine how Charlotte Gosling could fit hundreds of people in for an evening’s party (see this post).

Kate in Norfolk forwarded me a couple of highly interesting links: This first one, an interview with production designer Eve Stewart, discusses the film THE KING’S SPEECH. The second also discusses Logue’s consultation room — and obsesses on that wall (I love the windows!). It also links up the Guardian’s article.

Just search for “33 Portland Place” I had already come across the website for the building. Just marvel at the interiors, as you read about the history of the place. A 2nd website provides a few more photos and info.

Have to wonder: Did anyone realize the 19th century inhabitants of 145 Piccadilly may have visited No. 33 Portland Place??

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Colin Firth Reads the King’s Letters & Diaries

February 21, 2011 at 10:56 am (people, research) (, , , , , , , , , )

Just watched 60 Minutes. Wonderful to see Colin Firth (AKA Mr. Darcy to many, many Austen fans…) called a successful actor about whom little is known; and wonderful to see him walking around Hampshire (I think I recognized a bit of street in one segment…).

But my main reason for this post is to talk about the TERRIFIC “FIND” — a cache of letters and diaries in the attic (where else…) of the speech therapist’s former home; his grandson unearthed the items when searching for photographs. The film crew had asked for photos, hoping to find some costume ideas — but they got more than they bargained for when the response came back I’ve got photographs, and a lot more.

I’ve not had the opportunity to delve deep into 60 Minutes Overtime (with more information on the letters and diaries). The same link will give you video (if you missed it) of Colin Firth and his visit to Hampshire.

Enjoy!

P.S. Writer David Seidler has an interesting tale to tell too. See it at Boston Globe.

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