Film crews take over street to film ‘out of this world’ comedy

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Film crews take over street to film ‘out of this world’ comedy

Aliens have conquered Earth – at least they have in a new comedy series being filmed in Runcorn.

Cast and production crew set up in the town centre today for a shoot at a cafe on Regent Street.

The street has been transformed into a post-invasion ghost town with shuttered shops and strewn with scattered household goods plus graffiti daubed on the wall with the slogans “Aliens go home.”

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A cast member either dressed as an alien or as dressed as a person trying to look like an alien was the focus of the filming when the ECHO attended this morning.

Church Street was shut briefly during part of the shoot.

The filming is for ‘We Are Not Alone’, produced by Big Talk Productions – the company behind series including Stephen Merchant’s The Outlaws with Christopher Walken, Back by Simon Blackwell with Robert Webb and David Mitchell, and the sitcom Friday Night Dinner featuring Tamsin Grieg and Mark Heap.

A wider shot shows the street strewn with household goods as if a some disaster has passed through or attempted escape interrupted.

‘We Are Not Alone’ is set six weeks after aliens have invaded Earth and explores the culture clash between humankind and its new masters.

The show was commissioned for BBC Studios subsidiary UKTV to air on Dave.

According to UKTV’s show description, Earth’s cosmic conquerors find themselves “trying to make sense of a planet so confusing and idiotic that its inhabitants can’t even agree which side of the road to drive on”.

Regent Street, Runcorn, this morning.
Regent Street, Runcorn, this morning.

It is written by Laurence Rickard and Ben Willbond, directed by Fergus Costello, of Brain In Gear, and Phillip Leach, of The Bay.

Executive producers for Big Talk are Kenton Allen, Matthew Justice and Victoria Grew.

Halton Borough Council confirmed to the ECHO it had issued a filming permit following an application from Liverpool Film Office on behalf of Big Talk.

A spokeswoman for the local authority said the shoot was focused on a Regent Street cafe.

The show is a science fiction comedy, based on an alien invasion on the country and focusing on the story of a character, Stewart, a council worker who lives in Clitheroe and tries to help the new overlords administer the country.

Laurence Rickard and Ben Willbond said: “We are so excited to be bringing this project to you puny Earthlings.

“We’ve never attempted anything so ambitious or ridiculous, so we’re thrilled to be joined on the adventure by such an incredible cast and phenomenal crew.”

Pete Thornton said: “The premise of this highly original special is as richly comic as it is timely.

Filming was taking place on Regent Street in Runcorn.
Filming was taking place on Regent Street in Runcorn.

“We’ve seen shows before about alien invasion, but none have grappled with how said aliens might try to govern and live alongside us after their – inevitably pathetically easy – victory.

“By observing the way we live through fresh alien eyes, Larry and Ben’s remarkable script does a brilliant job of reflecting our topsy-turvy world and pointing out what a bunch of idiots the human race really are – and that all things considered we might not actually be the best custodians of our increasingly fragile and damaged planet.”

Cherie Cunningham said: “This is one of the most ambitious productions Dave has ever undertaken, with a hilarious script full of great characters and vivid worldbuilding.

“We’re thrilled to be working with Big Talk on bringing We Are Not Alone to Dave viewers.”

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