A Dance to the Music of Time

Friday 14th July. 2.00 PM – ‘A’ Stage, Shepperton Studios. Another dance today but in a very different vein from Raleigh and Bess’ volta. Today it is the Queen who dances with Raleigh in one of the most powerful scenes in the movie. As there was no dialogue in this morning’s work it’s perhaps an [...]

Mel’s Blog – Love

Friday the 14th of July - Today is my last day on set. What an amazing day to finish on -- today Shekhar was definitely on fire. In only one shot, he captured what the whole film is about – a queen’s struggle in deciding whether to remain an ‘untouchable divine entity’ or to give [...]

Mel’s Blog – Dancing Flame

Wednesday, the 12th of July - Like a flame flickering in the wind, movement mesmerizes the eyes. No other director I know uses ‘movement’ like Shekhar does. The camera flows and glides throughout so many scenes giving the film a sense of the ‘playfulness’ of life. When I asked Shekhar why he was so fond [...]

Mel’s Blog – Spot the Detail

Tuesday, the 11th of July - The detail Shekhar chooses to incorporate into his shots always impresses me. Today there was an intimate scene between Raleigh and the Queen, however Raleigh couldn’t get too close too soon. It took quite some time for him to feel confident to stand close to Her Majesty… In order [...]

Mel’s Blog – Like a Moth

Monday, 10th July 2006 - In short, today was a rather grim day. In the first half we filmed a Throckmorton devising a way to get back in favour with the Queen, then around lunchtime we watched Throckmorton being hanged on the rushes. Hmmm…not quite what I was after before lunch…but still this is the [...]

Evil Humours

Thursday 13th July. 4.00 PM – ‘A’ Stage, Shepperton Studios. In Elizabeth’s private apartments she and Bess discuss the thorny issue of what to do with Mary Queen of Scots whilst the Queen is bled for her health. During Elizabeth’s reign the prevailing medical theory was still that which had come down from the ancient [...]

The Consolation of Philosophy

Wednesday 12th July. 10.00 AM – ‘A’ Stage, Shepperton Studios. With the armada sailing Elizabeth’s reign is reaching a crisis and Raleigh finds her in her private apartments late at night, reading. For a scene as pregnant with foreboding and suppressed emotion as this there is only really one book that the Queen can be [...]

Death and Divinity

Tuesday 11th July. 5.30 PM – ‘A’ Stage, Shepperton Studios. Raleigh finds Elizabeth in her private quarters as she struggles with the hardest decision of her life. As I’ve mentioned in earlier blogs Elizabeth agonised and prevaricated over signing the execution warrant for Mary Queen of Scots and in this scene we hope to show [...]

Dangerous Liaisons

Monday 10th July. 9.30 AM – ‘J’ Stage, Shepperton Studios. Power in Elizabethan England was concentrated in the hands of a very few families but this could be as dangerous for them as it was convenient. Such was life for the Throckmortons and in today’s scene Bess received an unwelcome invitation from her cousin Francis. [...]

Mel’s Blog – Dressing Up

8th of July 2006 - In the private chamber, the Queen talks to her ladies in waiting. This scene is full of giggly, feminine energy yet the queen, whilst partaking, is still very much in control and not one of the girls. This scene sets up nicely the complex and intriguing relationship between the Queen [...]