Lincoln on Film

Here in Lincoln, we are extremely lucky to have such a historic and beautiful plethora of buildings and architecture, and we aren’t the only people to think so. Many production teams have used these historic locations whilst shooting for the big screen, so we have compiled is a list of films you may or may not know were shot (or at least partly) right here in our beloved city.

The King (2019)

Hal, wayward prince and reluctant heir to the English throne, is crowned Henry V after his tyrannical father dies. Now the young king must navigate palace politics, the war his father left behind, and the emotional strings of his past life – including his relationship with his closest friend and mentor, an aging alcoholic knight.

Starring Timothée Chalamet, Joel Edgerton, Lily-Rose Depp and Robert Pattinson, the historic quarter of Lincoln was transformed into a film set ready for Henry V’s movie coronation. Henry V was crowned in 1413 at Westminster Abbey, but Lincoln Cathedral was used as a double for the Abbey during filming.

Peterloo (2018)

This British historical drama is based on the Peterloo Massacre of 1819. British forces charge on a peaceful pro-democracy rally at St Peter’s Field in Manchester, killing 15 people and injuring hundreds more when they charged at over 60,000 protestors.

Starring David Moorst, Rory Kinnear, Maxine Peake and Philip Jackson, the Bailgate area made the perfect setting and was filled with over 100 actors, historic props and film crews.

The Young Victoria (2009)

This dramatization shows the turbulent years of a young princes who came to be known as Queen Victoria, as well as her enduring romance with Price Albert.

Starring Emily Blunt, Rupert Friend, Jim Broadbent and Mark Strong, scenes set at Westminster Abbey were once again filmed at Lincoln Cathedral.

The Da Vinci Code (2006)

Arguably the most famous film for being filmed in Lincoln, The Da Vinic code follows symbologist Robert Langdon who travels from Parish to London to unravel a bizarre murder. Accompanied by a cryptographer, he soon comes across a religious enigma protected by an age-old secret society.

Stars Tom Hanks, Ian McKellen and Audrey Tautou all stayed in Lincoln during the shoot. Lincoln cathedral was, of course, used to pose as Westminster Abbey due to the originally desired filming location refused on religion grounds.

Possession (2002)

Set in Lincoln University, Roland, a struggling American scholar, stumbles upon a pair of love letters that belonged to a famous Victorian poet he idolises. He and another expert unearth the tale of a forbidden love affair.

Starring Aaron Eckhart, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jennifer Ehle and Jeremy Northam, this film was an adaptation of A.S Byatt’s 1990 award-winning novel set in the then-fictitious Lincoln University. When it was finally decided to be made into a film, University of Lincoln was now very real, and there was little hesitation when the new university was asked if filming could take place on campus.

The Wild and the Willing (1962)

A group of young men at university enjoy the student life of dancing, drinking and meeting girls. Relationships are formed and pranks are performed with disastrous consequences all round.

Starring Virginia Maskell, Paul Rogers, Samantha Eggar and Ian McShane, it was filmed on location at Lincoln Castle which doubled as the university. The film actually opens with a panning shot from the Castle walls looking towards the Cathedral with a thank you displayed on screen to the City of Lincoln and its people for helping to create Kilminster University.

Napoleon (2023)

Although not yet released, and originally named Kitbag, we can’t ignore Ridley Scott’s upcoming movie that was shot earlier in March – an upcoming historical drama depicting Napoleon’s rise to power and his addictive and often volatile relationship with his wife, Josephine. Starring Joaquin Phoenix, Vanessa Kirkby, Ian McNeice and Tahar Rahim, Lincoln Cathedral was refashioned to depict the famous Notre Dame and the surrounding area was transformed from 21st century Lincoln to late 18th century France. The film is due to be released next year, so be sure to keep an eye out!