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Brideshead Revisited

When Brideshead Revisited was first broadcast in 1981 it catapulted Castle Howard into the public eye and today, for many, the house remains synonymous with Evelyn Waugh's iconic novel.

Castle Howard reprised its role as the Marchmain's family home in 2008 when Miramax returned to Yorkshire to shoot Brideshead Revisited, the feature film.

Jeremy Irons, Anthony Andrews and Diana Quick, a new generation of actors, were supported by such figures as Laurence Olivier, Claire Bloom and John Gielgud in the 1981 Granada series. Similarly the 2008 feature film saw younger actors Ben Whishaw, Matthew Goode and Hayley Atwell take centre stage alongside established stars such as Michael Gambon and Emma Thompson.

Visitors to the house can enjoy our Brideshead Exhibition in the High Saloon rooms.

Arriving at Brideshead

Anthony Andrews & Jeremony Irons as Sebastian & CharlesIt was a challenge for the Miramax producers to make the same film in the same location. Certain iconic scenes from the Granada production had to be reproduced; firstly the arrival at the house. The solution? Arrivals took place on the south side in the film, contrasting to the north side used in the Granada series.
Arriving at Brideshead in the film

Changing the Interiors

Jeremy Irons in the Long Gallery In both versions, various interiors in the house were temporarily modified. The Long Gallery was used as the sumptuous setting for Julia's ball in the film, whereas Granada transformed it into a cavernous drawing room where Charles contemplated the Flytes. The Great Hall, Grand Staircase, Temple of the Four Winds, Garden Hall and High South were also pressed into service.
Emma Thompson plays Lady Marchmain

Scenes Revisited

In both versions, Vanbrugh's Temple of the Four Winds played host to a frivolous day of wine-tasting and indulgence as the two young men spend their idyllic days at Brideshead. The Atlas Fountain plays an important part in both productions too.

Charles & Sebastian wine-tasting in the TV seriesMatthew Goode & Ben Whishaw as Charles & Sebastian

Sebastian & Charles by the Atlas FountainCharles & Sebastian in Granada's Brideshead Revisited

Scenes Restored

Jeremy Irons as Charles, painting the Garden Hall The Garden Hall was transformed in the Granada production from derelict interior, following the fire of 1940, to the office room where Charles painted his landscapes. Similarly, the High Saloon, also destroyed by the fire was restored by Miramax and used to represent the grand dining room as well as the bed chamber where Lord Marchmain passed away.

Charles joins the Flytes for dinner