Exclusive: Locked Down used Harrods employees as extras for safety

Ian Sandwell
·2-min read
Photo credit: Susie Allnutt - Warner Bros.
Photo credit: Susie Allnutt - Warner Bros.

From Digital Spy

Locked Down is the latest movie to be released that was conceived and filmed entirely during the ongoing global pandemic.

Written by Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight, the movie sees Anne Hathaway and Chiwetel Ejiofor play a couple stuck at home together when a mandatory lockdown is announced, just as they decided to separate.

However, it turns out to be a surprising opportunity for them when they come up with a plan to attempt a high-risk, high-stakes heist at Harrods during lockdown.

Locked Down filmed under strict safety protocols during September and October last year and while most of it takes place in the couples' home, it managed to film at the actual Harrods for the heist sequences.

Photo credit: Susie Allnutt - Warner Bros.
Photo credit: Susie Allnutt - Warner Bros.

Rent Locked Down on Prime Video

Talking to Digital Spy, director Doug Liman revealed that the Harrods set sequence ended up having an ingenious solution in order to film it safely. "Harrods was going to require a hundred extras. And as we all know, lots of people could equate to a super spreader event," he explained.

"So figuring out the logistics of how to do Harrods safely was enormously challenging. But ultimately, the solution was pretty simple, which is that all of the extras in Harrods are Harrods employees.

"So the way that Mindy Kaling is in her own home acting, or Ben Stiller is in his own home acting, all of the extras you see in Harrods are in the environment that they were in every day anyhow."

Photo credit: Susie Allnutt - Warner Bros.
Photo credit: Susie Allnutt - Warner Bros.

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Having Harrods on board for the movie also ended up having another benefit to what Liman had planned to film.

"There were things we were told we were going to have trouble pulling off, like the street scenes in front of Harrods, because of COVID, there's no filming on the street," he recalled.

"But because Harrods were participating with us on the film, they approached the government to ask for permission, and they got a yes where we had gotten a no. So we got everything we asked for."

Locked Down is available to rent now on Prime Video, iTunes and other digital retailers in the UK, and is available to watch now on HBO Max in the US.

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