DIRECTOR Francis Lee has announced that filming has finished on Mary Anning biopic ‘Ammonite’.
Scenes starring Oscar-winning actress Kate Winslet as Lyme Regis’ famous fossil hunter Mary Anning, along with co-star Saoirse Ronan, were filmed in Lyme Regis during March and production has since continued in London.
Commenting on social media platform Twitter on Monday, director Francis Lee said: “Today I wrapped on the shoot of my new film Ammonite. Exhausted but very pleased. Thank you for all your incredible support.”
Lee, who also directed the acclaimed ‘God’s Own County’, received some criticism during filming for his decision to portray Anning as a gay woman.
His tweet continued: “History is a creative discipline based on interpretations.”
It is not yet known when ‘Ammonite’ will be released, but it is hoped it will create a tourism boom in Lyme Regis, similar to that experienced following the release of ‘The French Lieutenant’s Woman’, filmed in the town in the 1980s.
Following the filming of ‘The French Lieutenant’s Woman’, Lyme Regis received £8,000 in compensation – the equivalent of about £36,000 today – for disruption caused during filming.
The town council has been in negotiations with the creators of ‘Ammonite’ for a similar compensation fee. The final figure has not yet been officially announced but is believed to be in the region of £15,000.
It has also not yet been decided how the money will be spent, but suggestions have included giving it to the Rotary Club of Lyme Regis for distribution to local good causes, or to the Mary Anning Rocks campaign towards a statue of the palaeontologist.