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Norfolk filmed David Copperfield gets all-star premiere at London Film Festival

PUBLISHED: 09:15 03 October 2019 | UPDATED: 10:43 03 October 2019

Cast and attendees during The Personal History of David Copperfield premiere at the London Film Festival. Picture: Ian West/PA Wire

Cast and attendees during The Personal History of David Copperfield premiere at the London Film Festival. Picture: Ian West/PA Wire

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Some familiar Norfolk locations were to be seen as the new all-star big screen adaptation of David Copperfield got the glitzy red carpet treatment as it opened the London Film Festival.

Dev Patel plays the title character in The Personal History of David Copperfield, which was partially filmed in Norfolk. Picture: LionsgateDev Patel plays the title character in The Personal History of David Copperfield, which was partially filmed in Norfolk. Picture: Lionsgate

Historic parts of King's Lynn were transformed last summer for the filming of The Personal History of David Copperfield, which has been directed and co-written by Armando Iannucci.

Crowds lined the Purfleet to catch a glimpse of the star-studded cast, including Dev Patel as Copperfield, Peter Capaldi as Mr Micawber and Tilda Swinton as Betsey Trotwood.

Hugh Laurie, Armando Iannucci and Dev Patel (left to right) during The Personal History of David Copperfield at the London Film Festival premiere. Picture: Ian West/PA WireHugh Laurie, Armando Iannucci and Dev Patel (left to right) during The Personal History of David Copperfield at the London Film Festival premiere. Picture: Ian West/PA Wire

The normally quiet waters beneath the Custom House were filled with 10 sailing boats as the town was transformed into the setting for the Charles Dickens novel.

The adaptation, due for release in UK cinemas in January, also includes scenes shot in Angel Hill at Bury St Edmunds and at Weybourne beach.

Gwendoline Christie on the red carpet at The Personal History of David Copperfield London Film Festival premiere. Picture: Ian West/PA WireGwendoline Christie on the red carpet at The Personal History of David Copperfield London Film Festival premiere. Picture: Ian West/PA Wire

Many of the locations can be seen in the trailer for the film that was released ahead of its European premiere opening the 63rd BFI London Film Festival last night.

The all-star cast were out in force on the red carpet for the screening at the Odeon Luxe Leicester Square in London.

King's Lynn locations can be seen in the trailer for The Personal History of David Copperfield which was filmed in the town. Picture: Lionsgate/YouTubeKing's Lynn locations can be seen in the trailer for The Personal History of David Copperfield which was filmed in the town. Picture: Lionsgate/YouTube

The film, which chronicles the life of protagonist David Copperfield, from Charles Dickens' eighth novel, from his childhood to his later life as a successful author, has made headlines for its race blind casting.

Slumdog Millionaire actor Dev Patel actor plays the title role and speaking at the screening he credited The Thick Of It and Veep creator Armando Iannucci for his casting.

The filming of David Copperfield is taking place at The Purfleet in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian BurtThe filming of David Copperfield is taking place at The Purfleet in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian Burt

He said: "Just to be able to step into the world of Dickens in Victorian England is a real honour, it's a treat, and I hope it opens the doors and sends a message to the industry to cast more minority actors in roles like this.

"I think Dickens has always been funny and relevant and topical but I didn't know the story of David Copperfield, I thought he was the illusionist when I went for the meeting with Armando, mainly because the story didn't reach out and grab me and I couldn't relate to it."

The filming of David Copperfield is taking place at The Purfleet in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian BurtThe filming of David Copperfield is taking place at The Purfleet in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian Burt

Game Of Thrones actress Gwendoline Christie, who plays Jane Murdstone, said: "I was very happy that Armando had decided to be more inclusive and adventurous with the casting, that is what really brought it up to date."

Hugh Laurie, who plays Mr Dix, added: "What I hope is within a minute or two, or even earlier, seconds of the film starting, you don't even think about it, because it's just not relevant."

Writer/director Armando Iannucci at The Personal History of David Copperfield premiere at the London Film Festival. Picture: Ian West/PA WireWriter/director Armando Iannucci at The Personal History of David Copperfield premiere at the London Film Festival. Picture: Ian West/PA Wire

The filming of David Copperfield is taking place at The Purfleet in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian BurtThe filming of David Copperfield is taking place at The Purfleet in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian Burt

Hugh Laurie during The Personal History of David Copperfield premiere at the London Film Festival. Picture: Ian West/PA WireHugh Laurie during The Personal History of David Copperfield premiere at the London Film Festival. Picture: Ian West/PA Wire

The filming of David Copperfield is taking place at The Purfleet in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian BurtThe filming of David Copperfield is taking place at The Purfleet in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian Burt

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