Andrea Arnold’s (Fish Tank, Red Road) new take on the classic Wuthering Heights drew critical acclaim on release in late 2011 and opened the Leeds International Film Festival as its fastest selling opener in 25 years. The film won Best Cinematography at the 68th Venice International Film Festival where it premiered. Robbie Ryan, Director of Photography on the film, picked up the award, with the Yorkshire landscape being described as ‘another character’. Wuthering Heights shot throughout North Yorkshire, supported by Screen Yorkshire, which invested in the production as well as providing crewing and locations support. Supported through Screen Yorkshire’s Production Fund (2003-2010)
Wuthering Heights, based on the novel by Emily Bronte, was adapted for the screen by Arnold and Olivia Hetreed and starred unknown Leeds-based actor James Howson as Heathcliff. Howson is joined by Kaya Scodelario (Skins) as Cathy, Steve Evets as Joseph, Oliver Milburn as Mr Linton and Nicola Burley as Isabella Linton. Also having never acted before were Sheffield-based Solomon Glave playing the young Heathcliff and Shannon Beer as the young Cathy.
North Yorkshire locations that feature in Wuthering Heights include Thwaite, Cotescue Park, Coverham, (Thrushcross Grange) and Moor Close Farm, Muker, Swaledale, (Wuthering Heights).
Hugo Heppell, Head of Production at Screen Yorkshire, said: “Andrea was absolute in her desire to make the film in Yorkshire which showed how important the region was to her vision for this unique film.”
“I really wanted to do honour to Bronte,” Arnold said, speaking at the press conference in Venice. “Wuthering Heights is a strange, dark, and profound book and I wanted to honour that spirit. I made decisions that felt true to me and were also true to what I believed was the spirit of the book.”
What the critics said:
‘Raw and affecting… extraordinarily moving’ – Anita Singh, DAILY TELEGRAPH
‘A beautiful beast of a movie’- Xan Brooks, THE GUARDIAN
‘Glorious’- Kate Muir, THE TIMES