‘Merlin’: Series 4 set visit

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Yesterday CultBox took a trip down to the set of BBC One’s fantasy drama Merlin at Shine’s studios in Cardiff.

There we were guided around the vast set, including Merlin’s bedroom and Morgana’s cave. The amount of HD-friendly detail in all the sets was frankly staggering (including a surprisingly accurate smell from various authentic old props and set dressing!), as was the sheer scale of the many rooms, chambers and hallways that have been crammed into the studio space.

We also saw the team’s much-hyped giant green screen box, just one of the many signs that this year’s episodes are truly going to be more ambitious and cinematic than ever. There will also be some very exciting guest stars to look out for, but we can’t reveal any more than that unfortunately!

After bumping into the towering Tom Hooper (Percival), we were lucky enough to watch some filming take place, from the point of view of the show’s sound recordist. The scene involved Morgana and a piece of mouldy bread. (Worst spoiler ever?) We’re not entirely sure which episode the scene is from, as no less than three directors were on set yesterday (including Merlin regular Alice Troughton), all filming different episodes concurrently, although it’s predominantly Episodes 12 and 13 that are being shot at the moment to allow plenty of time for the CGI team to work their magic (sorry) on the effects-heavy finale.

Cast members Bradley James (Arthur), Colin Morgan (Merlin), Katie McGrath (Morgana) and Merlin newcomer Nathaniel Parker (Agravaine) kindly took time out between filming to chat to us about what’s coming up. Needless to say, the four of them were absolutely charming, as you’ll see in the video interviews which will appear on the site over the next month or so in the build up to Series 4. Talking of which, the new series will definitely be starting this Autumn, most likely once Series 6 Part 2 of Doctor Who has finished airing. There’s also talk of the opening two-parter airing as a double-bill to launch the series.

In the meantime, here are some photos from the set…

> Buy the Series 3 boxset on Amazon.

Watch the BBC’s latest ‘Original British Drama’ trailer, featuring clips from Series 4…