Lights, camera, rain... BBC film crew comes to Calderdale to shoot comedy drama

A FILM company has been in "Callywood" this week producing a comedy/drama for BBC 3.

"The Gemma Factor" is about a young woman played by 20-year-old Anna Gilthorpe who has dreams of becoming famous and is the latest production to be located in Calderdale.

The half-hour pilot show ends with her trying to get an agent for her budding acting career and if television bosses approve a full series could be commissioned.

Ross Adams plays her friend Jeff and Talulah Riley (who appeared in the St Trinian's and Pride and Prejudice films) plays another friend Nell.

Former Emmerdale star Claire King, who played Kim Tate from 1989 to 1999 and also starred in Bad Girls, plays Jeff's mum, Betty.

Gwyneth Powell, who played headmistress Mrs McClusky in Grange Hill between 1981 and 1991, is Gemma's nana.

Free Form Productions, of Manchester, was commissioned for the filming and the executive producer is Rebecca Papworth, of Mytholmroyd.

She said the location was set in the ficticious Lumb Dean area which takes in the Upper Calder Valley and Halifax."We are spending five days filming setting up the characters and location and if it all goes well it could go to a series."

The cast is predominantly unknown and the extras have been recruited locally.

Filming has taken place in Hebden Bridge town centre, Todmorden bus station, the Piece Hall, and Heptonstall provided the scenic backdrop.

It was written by former Emmerdale actor Tony Pitts, of Sheffield.

No date has been fixed for broadcast.

Previous filming in Calderdale has attracted Ralph Fiennes who shot part of Wuthering Heights at Shibden Hall, Sean Bean striding manfully through Hardcastle Crags for Sharpe and Dr Who's assistant Catherine Tate in Mrs Ratcliffe's Revolution.