As part of a new UK-wide celebration of filmmakers Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, their bigscreen Mary Webb adaptation is returning to the town where it was filmed in July 1949.
Webb herself grew up in Much Wenlock, and this tale of free-spirited country girl Hazel Woodus (Jennifer Jones) uses a number of locations around Shropshire including the Stiperstones, Pontesbury and Wenlock itself. Gone to Earth had a troubled history, significantly recut for American release by its co-producer David O. Selznick and believed lost in its original form for many years. Since its restoration in the 1980s it has found a new audience, and its Technicolor vision of the English countryside still dazzles the eye.
The film shoot was a major event locally. As the Birmingham Gazette put it at the time: “the town itself co-stars, with every citizen a feature player. Its two main streets are littered with film equipment, and nearly one-twentieth of its population are earning 30 shillings a day as film extras.” We are delighted that two of those extras, Val Roberts and Maureen Norrey, will join us for this special one-off screening to share their memories of the summer when the Archers and Hollywood came to Shropshire.
Dir: Powell & Pressburger
Doors open at 17:30
Main feature starts at 18:00