The owners of South Brent village shop, their family and an employee all featured as extras in the film The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry.
The film company was scouting for suitable locations and stumbed across their shop.
Donna and Rob Wills together with their twin daughters Shannon and Georgia, their brother Gary Warne and staff member Ross Hunt all took part in the film.
Donna said: ‘‘Ross actually got to serve Jim Broadbent.
‘‘They took over the shop for four or five hours and the character Harold bought toothpaste and they filmed inside and outside.’’
That wasn’t the end of the day as Donna explained:
‘‘We then went to Exeter where the filming continued and I was taken on as a location marshall making sure everyone went to the right place.
Speaking of the film’s star she said: ‘‘Jim was very friendly, very normal and down-to earth. He was very professional and when he was in the shop stayed in character all the time.’’
‘‘When we told him about the filming, Will Steynor, who is one of our regular customers said ‘‘I used to go to Leighton Park School with Jim!’’ Another regular Brian Male got to ask Jim ‘‘Did you see any hedgehogs today?’’ in the film.
The film company took care of the group inviting them to Kingsbridge to watch the special advanced screening.
It’s not the first taste of acting for Donna who has been a member of South Brent Amateur Dramatics.
She took part in a recent production of Tom Thumb in which her daughter Shannon played the leading role.
The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry is based on the novel by Rachel Joyce.
The main character played by Jim Broadbent lives in Kingsbridge with his wife Maureen, played by Dame Penelope Wilton. He receives a letter from an old friend Queenie Hennessy who is dying of cancer in a hospice in Berwick-upon-Tweet. He writes an note and goes to post it at the Post Office which was filmed at The Bake House then decides that it isn’t really sufficient so sets off on foot to visit her. His walk lasts for 87 days and covers 627 miles and as he walks he reflects upon his life- his marriage, his former employment as a brewery representative and about his son David from whom he had become almost completely estranged and whose addictions led him to taking his own life.
Along the way he sends out postcards to important people in his life.