101 Dalmatians | 1996
This live-action version of the Disney classic uses plenty of real London locations, but the Dearly house is not one of them. ‘Gabriel Mews’ is a fictitious address, and both interior and exterior were built at Shepperton Studios.
The chase mysteriously takes them through the intimidatingly formal Burlington Arcade, which actually runs from 51 Piccadilly to Burlington Gardens. You might remember the Arcade housing the HQ of the IRA group in Phillip Noyce’s bonkers Patriot Games.
Much of the St James’s Park scene was actually filmed in the easier-to-manage Battersea Park, south of the River Thames, across from Chelsea.
And it’s in Chelsea itself that Roger and Anita are soon getting hitched at Chelsea Parish Church of St Luke, Sydney Street at Britten Street, off King’s Road, as a crowd of doggies waits outside.
The startling ‘House of DeVil’, fashion house of Anita’s boss Cruella DeVil (Glenn Close) is, surprisingly, real. It’s Minster Court, Mincing Lane EC3, a bizarre Gothicky development in the heart of the City of London, the city’s financial heart. Built in the early 90s, it’s inevitably been dubbed ‘Munster Court’.
Cruella’s home is real, too. It’s Sarum Chase, 23 West Heath Road at Platt’s Lane, Hampstead NW3. Opposite the wilds of West Heath, the house – described by architectural historian Nikolas Pevsner as “unashamed Hollywood Tudor” – was built in 1932 for Francis Owen Salisbury, the painter responsible for (among other works) the White House portrait of Franklin D Roosevelt. In June 1968 the house was used for the Rolling Stones’ Beggars’ Banquet photosession.
Cruella’s henchmen, Jasper and Horace (Hugh Laurie and Mark Williams), visit Skinner (John Shrapnel) on Stoney Street, just north of Borough Market, Borough SE1. This extremely photogenic area has supplied locations for Guy Ritchie’s Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrels, the Merchant-Ivory production Howards End, Danny Boyle’s Trance and, just on the other side of Borough Market, Bridget Jones’s Diary.
The country village where, uniquely in the UK, raccoons and skunks can be found running wild, is Hambleden, northeast of Henley-on-Thames, Buckinghamshire, in the Chilterns. Hambleden is something of a screen regular, having appeared in Dance With A Stranger and as the deserted village in 1998’s The Avengers.