Quintessentially British: Midlands filmmaker’s documentary explores all that’s ‘big’ about Britain

Sir Ian McKellen with director Frank Mannion in Quintessentially British

The likes of Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Dame Judi Dench, Sir Ian McKellen and Sir Max Hastings feature in Quintessentially British, which hit US cinemas this week.

The feature is directed by Frank Mannion, lecturer in film at Birmingham City University and founder of independent production company Swipe Films.

Watch the Quintessentially British trailer here:

It celebrates Britain’s history and traditions, from Chelsea pensioners and high-end motoring – including James Bond’s beloved Aston Martin – to the couture of Savile Row and sights. world-famous like Highclere Castle (the real Downton Abbey), Blenheim Palace, Cambridge University, Palace of Westminster, Chelsea Flower Show and the House of Lords.

The film also promises little-known glimpses into Queen Elizabeth II’s private side as well as the new King, Charles III, and his penchant for shoes from a particular British shoemaker.

Mr Mannion said: “Throughout the journey, while creating Quintessentially British, we encountered eccentric Lords, charming knights, irrepressible Ladies and Shakespeare-quoting taxi drivers.

“At a time when globalization and multinational homogeneity seem to dominate many Western countries, our film is a deep dive into what sets Britain apart as different – as recognized by our wonderful group of contributors.”

The film features interviews with Lady Carnarvon of Highclere Castle, Lord Palmer, Lord Chris Smith, Shakespearean director Sean Mathias, comedian Tom Allen, virtuoso classical musicians Braimah and Konya Kanneh-Mason and Dylan Kawende who funded his degree in law at the University of Cambridge.

It is due out in the UK on December 12.


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