SEIFF Promotional Video

Batman outside Hatty's Sweet Shop Batman pulls a crowd outside Hatty's Sweet Shop

Jaws drop as famous film characters invade Epsom

The people of Epsom couldn’t believe their eyes on Bank Holiday Monday when they spotted Darth Vader in Leightons Opticians. And customers in The Absolute Barber Shop felt their hair stand on end when Boba Fett popped in for a trim. Then, browsers haunting Waterstones were suddenly confronted by the Ghostbusters team.

Darth Vader at Leightons Opticians

An eye-popping moment when Darth Vader checked out Leightons Opticians.

As word spread that Hollywood had invaded the town, children and adults began queuing up, desperate to have their photos taken with the famous fictional characters.

Ghostbusters confront Batman in Waterstones

Ghostbusters take a reading on Batman in Epsom’s Waterstones

The actors were all dedicated cosplayers – people whose hobby it is to role play characters from films, games, books, and comics. Many of those involved were local but some came from as far afield as Suffolk.

Iron Man in The Toy Barnhaus

Shooting the promo video with Iron Man in The Toy Barnhaus

They were taking part in a film to promote the forthcoming SATISFIED EYE International Film Festival (SEIFF) which holds its inaugural event in Epsom in October.

Bumblebee at Epsom Lawn Tennis Club

Bumblebee nets all the attention at Epsom Lawn Tennis Club

Artistic director Chris Hastings said: “We want people to realise that SEIFF is all about bringing film to town. The festival will be showcasing the latest and best movies by up and coming filmmakers from around the world. Epsom will be cooler than Cannes, and with fewer yachts!”

Darth Vader at Leightons Opticians

SEIFF artistic director Chris Hastings and cinematographer Luke Whatley-Bigg put Darth Vader in the frame at Leightons Opticians

Seven local shops took part in the filming, some of them opening especially for the event. Dozens of other local people were involved both in front of and behind the camera.

Deadpool at JF Daughters in Epsom

Deadpool tries to pawn the Infinity Gauntlet at JF Daughters

Scenes were also shot at Rosebery Park (Atomic Blonde’s Lorraine Broughton), Stitch Mouse (Walking Dead’s Negan), The Toy Barnhaus (Iron Man), Epsom Lawn Tennis Club (Transformers’ Bumblebee), Hatty’s Sweet Shop (Batman), and JF Daughters (Deadpool pawning the Infinity Gauntlet).

Iron Man at Waterstones in Epsom

SEIFF artistic director Chris Hastings plays up to Iron Man at the Toy Barnhaus

“I can’t thank local businesses and people enough for responding so magnificently to our request to take part in the film,” Hastings said. “We were on a crazily tight schedule trying to fit all this in and against all the odds we managed to do it. The one thing we hadn’t allowed time for was all the people wanting to take photos. Everyone had tremendous fun.”

Darth Vader at Leightons Opticians in Epsom

Cinematographer Luke Whatley-Bigg feels the awesome force of Darth Vader at Leightons Opticians

Cinematographer for the shoot was 14-year-old Luke Whatley-Bigg, an upcoming Epsom filmmaker whose stunning drone videos of Surrey and iconic locations such as First World War cemeteries and the Jurassic coastline feature on YouTube.

A ghost haunting Waterstones in Epsom

A haunting job for Ghostbuster in Epsom’s Waterstones

The film, which will be available on YouTube and other websites, will also advise people in the Epsom and Ewell area who want to attend the festival that they can pre-register now for first pick of the tickets when they become available in the autumn by visiting the pre-registration page.

Darth Vader in Leightons Opticians

“I am your father!” – should have gone to Leightons!

Walking Dead's Negan in Epsom's Stitch Mouse

Walking Dead’s Negan checks out the tribute at Stitch Mouse in Epsom

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