Alexander Mackendrick directed The Ladykillers, a 1955 British black comedy crime film for Ealing Studios. Mrs. Wilberforce is played by Alec Guinness, Cecil Parker, Herbert Lom, Peter Sellers, Danny Green, Jack Warner and Katie Johnson. The screenplay was written by William Rose, who was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay and won a BAFTA Award for Best British Screenplay for this screenplay. He said he dreamed the whole movie and all he had to do when he woke up was remember the details.
Professor Marcus, who took the two available rooms so that he and his four companions – Major Courtney, Mr. Harvey, Mr. Robinson and Mr. Lawson – could practice as a Christian singing group, in the newest tenant by Louisa Wilberforce. This is all just a ruse, as Marcus is a criminal genius who, along with the other four members of his current gang, is plotting their new crime out of the house, an armored car theft. Marcus banks on the character of Mrs. Wilberforce being true to what he knows about her, allowing him to exploit her as a dupe in the scheme.
However, as other elements of the crime emerge, Marcus and the four must figure out what to do, even though they think Mrs. Wilberforce has figured out what’s going on. What they do may be influenced by the fact that Mrs. Wilberforce is nice to the cops, despite the fact that the cops, in turn, mostly amuse her in her role as the proverbial harmless little old woman.
Ladykillers filming locations
Mrs. Wilberforce (Katie Johnson) unwittingly gives way to Professor Marcus (Alec Guinness, in a role intended for Alistair Sim) and his band of thieves disguised as a string quintet in this classic dark comedy from Ealing. The setting is King’s Cross in London, before the area was associated with drugs and prostitutes.
The armored car robbery begins under the Victorian gasometers on Goods Way, near King’s Cross station, and actually happens on Battle Bridge Road. This cobbled street, flanked by the magnificent ironwork of gasometers, was a well-known location in films like Alfie, Backbeat, Chaplin, The Missionary and The Attendant. As part of the regeneration of King’s Cross, the area has been extensively rebuilt. Only one of the gasholders is still operational.
Mrs. Wilberforce Street
Although the view from the house overlooks Argylle Street, the house was built on a vacant lot at the western end of Frederica Street, about a mile north of Caledonian Road and opposite Pentonville Gaol.
The crooked house was designed without true right angles, in keeping with the staggered plot. Unfortunately, the whole street was later renovated into a housing estate, leaving no trace of the old houses depicted in the film.
The entrance to the tunnel was indeed behind Frederica Street, where the remains are loaded into freight trailers leaving King’s Cross station. This is the entrance to the Copenhagen tunnel. There are three tunnels in all, the one used in the film serving the line to the King’s Cross freight yards.
Vale Royal, a cul-de-sac leading east from York Way, N7, leads to a small car park where the Professor and Louis (Herbert Lom) conduct their final shootout, as well as the decrepit grandeur of the tunnel entrances , is no longer visible from Frederica Street. Old-fashioned signals that seemed deadly have long since been replaced.
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St. Pancras Station
Mrs Wilberforce’s house appears to be at the end of a cul-de-sac on Euston Road, NW1, opposite St Pancras Station, now St Pancras International. The house is clearly intended to be in Argylle Street, which runs south from Euston Road as seen from the station. Argylle Street, on the other hand, is not a cul-de-sac and the railway lines from the terminus continue north.
Ilja Hurnk, a Czech composer, turned the film into an opera called The Lady and the Robbers in 1966. Bruce Bedford’s radio adaptation of the film, starring Edward Petherbridge and Margot Boyd, was first broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on January 13, 1996. .
In 2004 the Coen brothers made an American remake of the film starring Tom Hanks, Irma P. Hall, Marlon Wayans, JK Simmons, Tzi Ma and Ryan Hurst, which starred Tom Hanks, Irma P. Hall, Marlon Wayans , JK Simmons. , Tzi Ma and Ryan Hurst. The film’s setting is moved from London to Saucier, Mississippi, which is home to a river casino.
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