LIVING IN '66: LONDON THROUGH A LENS
In 1966, Time Magazine declared that London was the ‘swinging’ capital of the world. Now, 50 years on, Patsy Kensit explores what the year was really like, via 5 of her favourite photographs that capture London life in ’66.
Fin was commissioned by the BBC to make its first socio-historical documentary - exploring 1966 from a London perspective - where, significantly, much of the so-called 'swinging' scene stemmed from. Iconic photography, still a powerful medium in the late 60s, was chosen as a chapter-style device to explore the year. By using five diverse images as our lens, we were able to explore how both social tension and national celebration combined with cultural upheaval and re-invention to mark ’66 as a much-cited year of note. The programme's chosen five images were:
Twiggy – The ‘Face of '66’ - FASHION
Rolling Stones – '66 Primrose Hill shoot - MUSIC
Notting Hill Carnival – Officially started in ’66 – MULTI CULTURALISM
Kray Brothers – The '66 shooting of George Cornell - CRIME
World Cup – England’s ‘66 Victory - FOOTBALL
These headline subjects and their wider context were explored through the first-hand accounts of ordinary Londoners, as well as influential figures. This balanced approach provided a basis to explore the deeply felt issues playing out across the capital, alongside revelation of the lesser known aspects of everyday life, to truly explore whether 1966 was ‘swinging’ for everyone.
We were delighted Patsy Kensit fronted the programme, offering glamour with authenticity and a bridge back to ‘66 – her late father having worked directly with the most notorious family ‘firms,’ including the Kray Twins. Interweaving deep-dive researched archive throughout the narrative offered a touching and powerful intensity to this fast-moving documentary. Patsy guides the viewer through the historical context and key London locations of our stories, while personal testimony – by turns insightful, hilarious and shocking – provides a new and unique take on the year as previosuly defined by Time Magazine.
Fin partnered with Director, Louis Bamber and Producer, Pete Brandon to chart the highs and lows of 1966. Interviews were shot with 60s-inspired lens effects and texture, continuing the photographic theme. Edited & Executive Produced in-house, the final edit came complete with '66 chart-topping music to provide a visceral sense of the time. The final dub at Guilt Free brought all the elements together and once delivered it was chosen to represent the wider Living in ’66 pan-regional series and generated extensive press coverage.