Norfolk

Danny Boyle movie shoot on Gorleston beach attracts 6,000 extras

Gorleston beach crowd
Image caption Six thousand people answered the call to appear in Danny Boyle's new film

About 6,000 film extras descended on a Norfolk beach after answering a casting call for a Danny Boyle movie.

The Oscar-winning director shot a concert scene at Gorleston for his new film, inspired by The Beatles.

The comedy has been written by Richard Curtis, whose partner Emma Freud tweeted it was the "biggest film crowd ever shot" in Britain.

Ms Freud appealed for extras in May, with 7,400 people signing up in a day.

The director instructed the crowd from the roof of the beachside Pier Hotel, for what he described as one of the film's "key, iconic" scenes.

The unpaid extras had to rehearse for the gig in the as-yet-untitled movie, which stars EastEnders' Himesh Patel and Downton Abbey actress Lily James.

Patel performed a punk rendition of The Beatles' song Help, but the crowd was told to pretend they had never heard the song before as the movie was about a world where the band had never existed.

Image caption Danny Boyle told the crowd to greet Himesh Patel like a "superstar"
Image caption The crowd then danced and cheered through a rendition of The Beatles' song Help
Image caption The weather was perfect for filming on the Norfolk coast
Image caption Danny Boyle thanked the throngs of people who turned out to star in the film

"We'll ask you to go absolutely bonkers - in greeting the superstar who has come home," Boyle told the crowd.

With the sun beating down on the beach, he warned people to save their energy for when the cameras started rolling.

Cameras were dotted around the area, while a helicopter filmed from the air.

Image caption Crowds turned out in their droves to party in the Norfolk sunshine
Image caption The extras passed through the gates to film on Gorleston beach for the as-yet-untitled movie
Image caption The seafront was packed with people trying to get a glimpse of the movie stars

"All I can tell you is in making a film every little bit matters and every single one of you does matter - you'll all be seen," said Boyle.

Richard Curtis said he hoped Gorleston could become the Notting Hill for the next generation.

"I walked down Notting Hill the other day and people are still photographing the blue door, so let's hope the Pier Hotel and Gorleston are the blue door and Notting Hill of the next tranche," he said.

One extra told the BBC: "We go to a lot of concerts, but this is the weirdest one we have ever been to."

Boyle and the stars of the film have been spotted in recent weeks at various other locations across Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex.

No date has yet been set for it to hit the cinema screens.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Actors Himesh Patel and Lily James were recently snapped while filming in Suffolk

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