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On the Screen - Senate House

While an archetype of Modernist design in central London, Senate House has also played contemporary ballrooms, a CIA lobby, a Russian secret service HQ – and even a fashion runway.

Filming at Senate House - War Office image
Given the iconic and unique nature of Senate House, it has been the backdrop for films, tv shows and adverts for the last 60 years.

Films featuring Senate House

Nanny McPhee: The Big Bang [2010] – film – uses The Chancellors Hall as the offices of the Ministry of War during WWII

Senate House in Dunkirk (1958)
Dunkirk film (1958)

The Day of Triffids [1962]

You Must Be Joking! film (1965)

The Most Dangerous Man in the World – USA title: ‘The Chairman’ [1969] – film

A Woman of No Importance [1982] – an early Alan Bennet monologue

An Englishman Abroad [1983] – a British comedy film

The Hunger [1983] – film – (Park West Clinic interior) Catherine Deneuve and David Bowie visit the in the foyer of Senate House, where Susan Sarandon and Cliff De Young work. The entrance hallway portrays part of a US hospital

In Nineteen Eighty-Four [1984] – film – John Hurt (Winston Smith) visits Richard Burton’s (O’Brien) character. Senate House is used as exterior of O’Brien’s apartment building

Blue Ice [1992] – film – used as the Royal hotel

Richard III [1995] – film – Maggie Smith curses her son Ian McKellen in his headquarters, which is Senate House’s foyer

RKO 281 [1999] – film

The Search for John Gissing [2001] – film

Spy Game [2001] – film – The C.I.A. lobby location was in Senate House

IRIS [2001] – film (starring Judi Dench)

The Dark Knight Rises [2012] – film – The Foyer and Crush Hall during a charity ball scene in 2012

The Dark Knight Rises [2012] – film – The Foyer and Crush Hall during a charity ball scene in 2012

The Dark Knight Rises [2012] – film – The Foyer and Crush Hall during a charity ball scene in 2012

Fast & Furious 6 [2013] – film – Senate House used as Moscow Interpol HQ

War Machine [2015] – film – comedy war film starring Brad Pitt

Television programmes featuring Senate House


Silent Witness - TV [2013]

Poirot [1989-2000] – TV – Senate House is used as the Athena Hotel in ‘The Veiled Lady’ and as the Art Gallery in ‘The Double Clue’

Jeeves & Wooster [1990-1993] – TV – Exterior shots of Wooster’s residence in New York City in series 3 and 4, were filmed at Senate House

Mosley [1998] – TV – a Channel 4 mini series

The Naked Chef, episode “a perfect day” [2000] – TV – Senate House tower in shot, not filmed on premises

Murder in Mind – “Sleeper” [2001] – BBC TV Drama

Silent Witness XIX [2015] – TV

Mr Selfridge [2015] – TV

Black Mirror – [2016] – TV

Lucky Man 2 [2016] – Sky Drama for TV

Music Videos featuring Senate House

Garbage: James Bond “The World is Not Enough” [1999] – Music Video

Adverts featuring Senate House

“Revolution” for Merrill Lynch [1999] – advert

Channel 4 building projection onto Senate house [2011] –– red carpet event

Virgin Money Senate House 3D Projection [2012] – advert

Arthur’s Day, Guinness [2012] – event – Arthur’s Day was a music event borne from a 2009 promotion by Diageo to celebrate the 250th anniversary of its Guinness brewing company

Bloomsbury Festival [2013] – event/promotion – a Parkour promotion by Parkour Generations.

Gucci [2014] – advert

Undercover [2015] – BBC One TV drama – shot in Beveridge Hall and the Crush Hall areas.

Guinness’ “Intolerant Champion” [2015] – advert – depicts story of an ordinary man in 1930s New York seeking undiscovered music for his radio shows and in process becomes a civil rights activist. It uses Crush Hall and Switch Room

Channel 5 [2016] – event/promotion – announcing rebranding of services, especially 5star