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Shepperton Studios is a world-class lot in Middlesex that has served many Academy Award-winning, British-made films such as A Passage to India and Chaplin. During the entirety of the original series of Doctor Who, it was an independent studio, but in 2001 it merged with Pinewood Studios to form a new, joint company.
Shepperton have not been used often in the making of Doctor Who. In fact, their biggest usage was in the making of Daleks' Invasion Earth 2150 A.D.. However, on at least two occasions — for Warriors of the Deep and The Pirate Planet — they have been used for second unit photography for the television show.
Their use in Warriors was notably accidental. The underwater sequences for the production were originally scheduled for Ealing, but when Margaret Thatcher ordered a surprise general election, the BBC had to scramble to find studio space to accommodate the suddenly increased political coverage. This forced Warriors to studio a week earlier than scheduled, at a time when Ealing was already booked. John Nathan-Turner thus had to find a backup location for the underwater work, and there weren't that many studios in proximity of London that could handle it. Shepperton was thus given the work, and the results were unexpectedly pleasing. Because Shepperton — unlike Ealing — allowed the use of video cameras, the material shot at Shepperton matched the principal photography shot at Television Centre.
Most notably, the studio was used to film the TV Series Thomas The Tank Engine & Friends, now simply Thomas & Friends, until 2009.
- ↑ Doctor Who Locations Guide entry on Shepperton Studios
- ↑ Shannon Sullivan's exploration of Warriors of the Deep