Film production is coming back in a big way
to the studio which is booked through to the middle of next year and is enjoying a boom time.That is also good news for local
ratepayers as the landlord, Hertsmere Borough Council, is receiving a very healthy revenue rental flow which helps to pay
for other services throughout the borough.
As the lads walked
along the dressing room corridor, who should rush out to meet them? The world famous actress Gwyneth Paltrow. Well okay she
just happened to be coming out of her room.
Gwyneth is currently
filming Proof at the studio with Anthony Hopkins and made her name in films such as The Talented Mr Ripley, Shakespeare In
Love and Malice.
Then it was on to
Stage Nine and a chance to sit in Chris Tarrant's chair on the set of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, which has been one of
the success stories at Elstree in recent years.
The visit ended
in the studio bar where I tried to convince Tweenies producer Karl to become a co-sponsor of the team.
It was sad to hear
that actor Bob Grant, who became a household name 30 years ago as Jack in On The Buses, has died. Older readers will remember
him as the woman chasing conductor in the series and in the three films that were made at Elstree and on location around the
streets of Borehamwood.
Apparently Bob got
himself through drama school by being a real life bus conductor. However, when the series ended he was unable to escape the
typecasting and his career nose-dived and he died in reduced circumstances, as they say in the business.
He joins other cast
members Michael Robbins who played the long suffering brother in law Arthur, who died in 1992, and Doris Hare who died in
2000, having played the mum.
Still with us are
Anna Karen, who played Olive, and still works mainly on the stage, Stephen Lewis, who portrayed Inspector Blakey, and is now
in Last Of The Summer Wine, and the star of the show Reg Varney who at 87 is enjoying his retirement down on the coast.
Personally I think
Karl should forget about the planned film version of The Tweenies and instead make a movie about a group of Borehamwood lads
taken off the streets and moulded into a lean, mean goal scoring machine by Paul Welsh MBE, and that does not stand for more
brown envelopes! Filmed at Elstree Studios of course.
By Paul Welsh MBE