‘It Happened Here’ (1964) – BFI Dual Format release on 23 July

❉ Kevin Brownlow and Andrew Mollo’s immensely powerful film depicts an alternative history in which England has been invaded and occupied by Nazi Germany. 

Coming to Blu-ray for the first time, on 23 July 2018, the film is presented in a new 2K remaster (from the original camera negative) by the BFI National Archive, supervised by Kevin Brownlow, to mark his 80th birthday.

A raft of exceptional extras include previously unseen behind-the-scenes footage, new interviews, news items, trailers and more.

‘The German invasion of England took place in July 1940 after the British retreat from Dunkirk. Strongly resisted at first, the German army took months to restore order, but the resistance movement, lacking outside support, was finally crushed. Then, in 1944, it reappeared.’

That is what happened when history was rewritten: Nazi Germany has won the Second World War and England is under occupation. Kevin Brownlow was only 18 when he and Andrew Mollo – just 16 – embarked on this ambitious neorealist-tinged drama, which took eight years to complete, helped along by financial support from Tony Richardson (Woodfall Films). Shot on both 16mm and 35mm, with a mainly amateur cast and with incredible attention to detail, the impressively polished result is a chilling and timely reminder of what might have been had Nazism not been defeated.

The newly remastered film will be premiered on the big screen at a special Blu-ray/DVD launch event at BFI Southbank on its release date, Monday 23 July at 6.00pm, followed by a discussion with Kevin Brownlow and Andrew Mollo. More details and tickets from www.bfi.org.uk/southbank

Special features

  • Presented in High Definition and Standard Definition
  • Mirror on the World (1962, 10 mins): full version of fake German newsreel
  • It Happened Here: Behind the Scenes (1956-66, 22 mins): previously unseen footage with a new commentary by Kevin Brownlow
  • Original UK and US trailers (1966)
  • It Happened Here Again (1976, 7 mins): excerpt from a documentary on Winstanley
  • Interview excerpt with the directors (2009, 2 mins)
  • The Conquest of London (1964/2005, 4 mins): Italian TV item
  • On Set With Brownlow and Mollo (2018, 12 mins): interview with Production Assistant Johanna Roeber
  • Kevin Brownlow Remembers It Happened Here (2018, 65 mins)
  • Image gallery
  • Introduction to How It Happened Here: text of David Robinson’s foreword to the book (Downloadable PDF – DVD only)
  • Illustrated booklet with writing by Kevin Brownlow and new essays by Dr Josephine Botting, DoP Peter Suschitzky and military historian EWW Fowler

❉ It Happened Here: A film by Kevin Brownlow & Andrew Mollo Dual Format Edition (Blu-ray & DVD) release, 23 July 2018. RRP: £19.99/ Cat. no. BFIB1298 / Cert PG.

❉ News source: BFI Publicity.

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