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Meryl Streep Suffragette movie to shoot inside Houses of Parliament

Story by Jack Foley

A NEW movie starring Meryl Streep and Carey Mulligan is to make cinema history by being the first major film to be allowed to shoot inside the Houses of Parliament.

Suffragette will tell the story of women’s votes campaigner Emmeline Pankhurst, who frequently led protests around Westminster, and who was imprisoned for the first time in February 1908 when she attempted to enter the House of Commons.

Later that year, she was jailed again after being found guilty of inciting a rush on the House of Commons.

Streep is expected to play Pankhurst, with Mulligan portraying a young foot soldier of the early feminist movement as she becomes radicalized and turns to violence after seeing peaceful protests achieve nothing.

Permission to shoot inside London’s iconic Houses of Parliament has been granted by the Administration Select Committee after its chairman Sir Alan Haselhurst was persuaded by the film’s subject matter and the need to raise money for the upkeep of Parliament.

He told BBC Radio 4: “This is a test case to some extent. We are putting our toe in the water. Nobody is disadvantaged.

“It is taking place in a way that absolutely does not affect the normal operation of Parliament, and if it helps the bottom line, then I would have thought the public would say, ‘You are being prudent.’”

Ironically, this is not the first time that a Streep movie has unfolded to some extent within Britain’s corridors of power. The actress won an Oscar for her portrayal of Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady, although on that occasion Manchester Town Hall doubled for parts of the Palace of Westminster.

Suffragette is also expected to star Helena Bonham Carter, Romola Garai and Ben Whishaw.

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