List Oxford: Films

The Great Hall in Christ Church (Harry Potter)

Approximately two months ago there was a Bollywood film (Desi Boys) being shot on Broad Street.

Shortly before that, we had James McAvoy here filming X-Men 4 – and since X-Men 4 has just been released, this post feels timely.

These gorgeous Oxfordian buildings don’t go to waste when they inspire writers and philosophers and they certainly don’t go to waste for film crews, directors and those millions of movie-goers who just love a good flick.

What are your weekend plans? It’s supposed to rain on Sunday – the perfect time to cuddle up and read watch a film based on a book (or a bookish place)! Here’s a list of films shot in Oxford(shire):

In addition to all these films, several actors, actresses and directors come from Oxford. In this article from The Oxford Mail, the author sums up Oxford’s film history nicely:

Hugh Laurie and Emma Watson, who plays Hermione in the Harry Potter films, were born in the city. Laurence Olivier went to school here, as did Sam Mendes and Maggie Smith, who, like Deborah Kerr, began her career at the Oxford Playhouse.

The first Oxford graduate to make it in Hollywood was Donald Crisp, who worked with such silent titans as D W Griffith and Buster Keaton, before becoming a reliable character actor in the sound era.

The multi-talented Ivor Novello became its first star through films like Alfred Hitchcock’s The Lodger (1928). Kris Kristofferson, Michael York and Hugh Grant have all since followed his lead. But the university’s only genuine superstar is Richard Burton, who began acting as a student at Exeter College and later teamed with Elizabeth Taylor in Doctor Faustus at the Playhouse.

Comedy actors Dudley Moore, Terry Jones, Michael Palin, Rowan Atkinson and Mel Smith are also Oxford alumni, as are actresses Imogen Stubbs, Kate Beckinsale, Emily Mortimer and Rosamund Pike.

Among the leading directors to study here are Anthony Asquith, Charles Crichton, Roger Corman and Terrence Malick, as well as those pioneers of kitchen sink drama, Lindsay Anderson, Tony Richardson, John Schlesinger and Ken Loach.

Screenwriters include Dennis Potter, Alan Bennett, Richard Curtis and Graham Greene, who started out as a film critic on a student magazine. In addition, some of the most successful films of all time have been based on books written by or about past residents, tutors and students.

Several stars also live in Oxfordshire, includingJeremy Irons and Ben Kingsley. Roald Dahl and Sir Michael Horden died here. Sir John Gielgud was cremated in Oxford, while such much-filmed authors as Kenneth Grahame, C S Lewis, George Orwell, Agatha Christie and J R R Tolkien are just some of those buried about the county.

In all, 60-odd feature films have been set in and around Oxford, with hundreds more having some association with either the city or the university.

There have also been dozens of TV shows filmed in the county —cult series including The Prisoner, The Champions, The New Avengers and Doctor Who; acclaimed costume pieces like Pride and Prejudice (1995), Emma (1996), Jane Eyre (1997), Oliver Twist (1999) and Daniel Deronda (2002); and hard-hitting dramas like Bad Girls and Casualty, as well as comedy classics like The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin and The Vicar of Dibley But the image of Oxford held by millions across the world comes primarly from two programmes — Brideshead Revisited and Inspector Morse (1987-2001).

A Chump at Oxford:

The Oxford Murders:

The Golden Compass:

An Education:


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