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What to watch: Suffolk-based film ‘The Dig’

Watch out You Know Who is in our midst! Don't worry this time Ralph Fiennes is at Sutton Hoo playing an archaeologist. Discover all the local places used in the film and how a Suffolk film maker helped to make it authentic.

The Dig film poster

If you haven’t been able to get to our glorious Suffolk coast recently because of lockdown and are missing the sand dunes and pretty seaside villages we’ve got good news for you. A brand new star-studded film has just been released on Netflix – The Dig – and it was recorded in some of Suffolk’s most iconic locations including Sutton Hoo, Thorpeness Beach, Shingle Street, Snape and RSPB Boyton Marsh. So you can bring the best of Suffolk into your home and enjoy your favourite Suffolk haunts from the comfort of your sofa.

The Dig filming
Jay Ducker with Ralph Fiennes. Image credit: LARRY HORRICKS/NETFLIX © 2021

The film is full of A Listers – the big names being Ralph Fiennes, Lily James and Carey Mullingan – but it was up to a local filmmaker to make the whole thing feel authentic. In his quest to nail a true Suffolk accent, Fiennes contacted Screen Suffolk to help him find an on-set assistant with a Suffolk accent. Film maker and musician Jay Ducker saw the shout out on Facebook and got the job!

“I remember being relatively relaxed because I honestly wasn’t expecting to get the job,” says Jay. “What really put me at ease was that Ralph was already using the Suffolk accent. It kind of disarmed me and made me feel as if I was speaking to a local or someone I knew really well. But what helped me get the job, I think, was that I immediately heard when and where he was going wrong with the dialect and without thinking I started correcting him in the interview. He seemed to respond well to that!”

In the film, Fiennes plays Basil Brown, the archaeologist who helps discover Sutton Hoo. The Dig is based on the 2007 novel of the same name and it reimagines the events of the 1939 excavation of Sutton Hoo.

Want to see if Jay helped Ralph nail the Suffolk dialect? The Dig came out on Netflix on 29 January, so that’s tonight’s viewing sorted…

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