Pupils from a boys’ prep school in East Sheen may be following in illustrious alumni’s footprints after starring in their own feature-length production of The Hobbit.
Paul Geary, 41, head of drama at Tower House Preparatory School, where Robert Pattinson and Tom Hardy studied, produced, directed and edited the 70-cast film for nine months, finishing on September 13.
Screenings of the two-hour film have been held at the school all week to tie in with the 75th anniversary of JRR Tolkien’s classic.
Mr Geary said: “We believe this is the first time a school in England has produced a full-length feature film, and what better story to choose than The Hobbit. The staff, boys and parents have shown great dedication to this project, which shows the quality of drama that a school can produce.”
There were 18 days of filming across various locations such as Tattershall Castle in Lincolnshire, Ashridge Forest in Hertfordshire and Chiswick House Gardens.
The film also features a computer-animated dragon, added into fight scenes in post-production, and the 12 boys who played dwarves spent two hours in make-up before filming began each day.
Alex Bain, 12, who played lead dwarf Thorin, said the students of Tower House had a lot of fun making the film.
He says: “It was pretty unbelievable because we went all around the country filming and had all our make-up done. I had a black beard and had to dye my hair for five months.”
Alex, who took part in 14 days of the filming, attended a premiere of the film with his peers on Thursday, September 13, at the Curzon Renoir Cinema in Brunswick Square.
He said: “We went to the middle of London and we all dressed in black ties and travelled in a limousine.”
Mr Geary said: “The film is production quality and we hope it is not like most people would think of a school film. The boys had a lot of fun making it, they absolutely loved it.”