Harry Potter star Timothy Spall has shot a new film using Scottish locations only, although the film is also about England.
The English actor who plays Peter Pettigrew in the Harry Potter films used the house of the Glasgow Vintage Vehicle Trust in the film The Last Bus
And the film tells the story of John O’Groats’ travels to Land’s End – although the cast and crew never left Scotland.
Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon, who also directed Small Faces and Whiskey Galore, filmed the film which releases across Scotland on Friday in October and November 2019.
The film tells the story of 90-year-old Tom Harper (Spall) who, after the death of his wife Mary (Phyllis Logan), travels the 874 miles from their home to the northernmost point of mainland Scotland at the point the southernmost of England, via local buses using their bus card.
Despite the epic nature of the trip, the film production never left Scotland, rather cleverly using Scottish locations and genuine regional buses to recreate the route.
Most of the filming took place in and around Glasgow, including at the Glasgow Vintage Vehicle Trust’s Bridgeton Bus Garage on Fordneuk Street.
The exterior of the Corporation’s former bus garage was used for bus stops and depots, while sets were built inside the museum which houses around 130 buses, coaches, utility vehicles and devices. period fire.
Other filming locations include the Summerlee Museum of Scottish Industrial Life in North Lanarkshire, and Dunure on the Ayrshire coast and Hunterston House in West Kilbride, both known to Outlander fans as the filming locations of the hit television series.
Touch Estate on the outskirts of Stirling acted as Tom and Mary’s cottage, with an unused house refurbished by the Art and Props department to create a warm and comfortable home.
The film also features numerous panoramic shots of the beautiful landscapes of the Scottish Borders, Argyll and Highlands.
Gillies MacKinnon, director of The Last Bus, said: “ The last bus required locations spanning the entire length of the UK – from John O’Groats to Land’s End. Glasgow is perfectly situated, offering a variety of urban styles and having access to a choice of landscapes within walking distance: plains, mountains, lochs and coastal areas.
“From town, it was easy to set up a second block shoot for some dramatic scenery further up the west coast around Glencoe. I have now made a number of films based in Glasgow. I hope I’ll be back soon to shoot another one. “
The Last Bus is just one of many productions to have taken advantage of Scotland as a backdrop in recent years – including most recently Fast & Furious 9 (filmed in Edinburgh), Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga (filmed in Glasgow and Edinburgh) and The Princess Switch: Switched Again (filmed in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Lothians).
According to recent research, one in five visitors are motivated to come to Scotland after seeing places on the big and small screen.
With the rise of streaming services and the increased availability to watch Scottish films years after their release, screen tourism could play a bigger role in attracting visitors and boosting Scottish tourism.
Jenni Steele, Director of Cinema and Creative Industries at VisitScotland, said: “Big and small screen productions have always played their part in attracting visitors to places across Scotland and it is wonderful that the Glasgow Vintage Vehicle Trust plays a role in producing this life. – affirmative and poignant narrative.
“Films shot in Scotland not only stimulate the local economy during production, but are also a showcase for the amazing landscapes of the country. They provide an opportunity to promote regions throughout the seasons and the long-term impact allows for investment and product development, which enables sustainable growth in tourism.
To find out more about the Glasgow Vintage Vehicle Trust, visit www.gvvt.org