New Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks project could be filmed on Bovingdon airfield

Production company SDTA Productions Ltd has submitted a planning application to Dacorum Borough Council

Thursday, 26th August 2021, 11:45 am
Updated Thursday, 26th August 2021, 11:48 am

A new Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks project could be filmed on Bovingdon airfield this winter, according to new plans.

Earlier this month production company SDTA Productions Ltd submitted a planning application to Dacorum Borough Council for filming on the site between August and December.

The project, referred to as Whirlwind, is expected to be World War Two series Masters of the Air, produced by Spielberg and Hanks.

Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks (C) Getty Images

The project is a follow up to critically acclaimed dramas Band of Brothers and The Pacific, and is expected to air on Apple TV in 2022.

Those rumours align with documents submitted to the council, which say Whirlwind is “to be the third instalment of an Emmy Award winning franchise”, and a recent photo of Masters of the Air director Cary Fukunaga – who also directed upcoming James Bond film No Time To Die – posing with a film slate referring to Whirlwind.

The filming would include the building of dummy control towers, four other structures and a 137m blue screen on the airfield.

The applicant also says there will be effects to replicate the ‘creation’ of seasons, including snow, as well as potential gunfire, smoke and flame special effects.

If the plans are approved, preparations will begin as soon as possible, with filming taking place later this winter.

An indicative timetable suggests the majority filming is scheduled from November 20 to December 20.

The plans say by the end of January 2022 the site will be reinstated to its original condition.

In the applicant’s planning summary, the production company said Bovingdon is the only suitable location available in the south of England, and “the production would have to move to Europe if consent is not forthcoming for this proposal.”

Masters of the Air has recently been filming in Oxford city centre, as well as Dalton Barracks in Abingdon, Oxfordshire.

It is based on Donald L. Miller’s book on the same name that followed the story of the Eight Air Force of the US Air Forces during the Second World War.

The series was first announced in 2013, before rights were sold to Apple TV in 2019 and production finally got under way in April.

The planning application was uploaded onto Dacorum Borough Council’s website on August 13, and it is currently with the planning case officer before a decision is made.