Statues celebrating nearly a century of cinema to be placed in Leicester Square

By Tom Horton, PA

Bronze statues depicting famous moments and characters in cinema from the last century will be placed in Leicester Square in a celebration of London’s film history.

Laurel and Hardy, Mary Poppins and Mr Bean will be among the eight figures represented in the “statue trail”, which will open next month.

Leicester Square was first home to a cinema in 1930, with the first premiere taking place there in 1937.

Leicester Square had its first film premiere in 1937 (Ian West/PA)

Since then, the square has cemented its place in British cinema history and it regularly plays host to some of the most high-profile events in the UK’s film calendar.

Also represented in the square will be Looney Tunes’ Bugs Bunny, Wonder Woman, Batman and Paddington.

A statue of Gene Kelly recreating the memorable Singin’ In The Rain dance sequence by hanging from a lamppost will also be on show.

Models being used in the production of the Laurel and Hardy statues (Pinpep/PA)

Each of the statues will be interacting with the square in some way – with designers also planning to make use of walls, benches and flowerbeds.

Laurel and Hardy will be shown teetering on the edge of a rooftop in a recreation of a scene from the 1929 film Liberty.

Several of the statues in the display, which will be free to view, are going to be illuminated at night and it will also be accompanied by videos and music.

The project, titled Scenes in the Square, is being delivered by the Hear of London Business Alliance, Westminster City Council and film studios.

The statues will be unveiled on February 27.