18 Behind-The-Scenes Secrets You Probably Didn’t Know About The Gentlemen

From the iconic chicken suit, Guy Ritchie easter eggs and famous filming locations.
The cast of Netflix's The Gentlemen
The cast of Netflix's The Gentlemen

The Gentlemen has proved to be a huge hit on Netflix as it continues to ride high on the UK most watched rankings.

The crime drama starring Theo James, Kaya Scodelario, Daniel Ings, Vinnie Jones and Ray Winstone – which is set in the same universe as Guy’s 2019 film of the same name – has quickly joined the roster of Guy Ritchie favourites.

But if you’ve been left feeling eager for a season 2 and intrigued to know more about the show, there’s plenty of behind-the-scenes secrets to get stuck into in the meantime.

Here are some facts about The Gentlemen that you probably didn’t know…

There’s a reason there aren’t any cameos from the original 2019 film

The Gentlemen does exist in the same universe as the 2019 film of the same name, which may have left some viewers wondering if there would be a cameo from any of the actors from the full length feature.

However, the TV show’s cast members have maintained there were never any plans for the likes of Matthew McConaughey or Charlie Hunnam to make an appearance.

“I was very glad that wasn’t the case,” Theo James told the LA Times. “It’s set in the world, but the characters have no overlap. It would have been too tricky to cross-pollinate them.

“The movie exists in its own space, and the story is very different. This is [about] melding two worlds. It’s a clear, linear story of ascension and betrayal. It felt better that they didn’t have any connection.

Kaya Scodelario added that while “it would have been nice to meet Matthew McConaughey”, it also would have made things a little “confusing”.

She added: “To have two or three people from the movie come into this world looks a little half-baked. It’s more interesting to have an entirely blank slate to go on this journey with these people”.

Kaya Scodelario and Theo James at the photocall for "The Gentlemen" held at Tudum Theatre on February 28, 2024 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Buckner/Variety via Getty Images)
Kaya Scodelario and Theo James at the photocall for "The Gentlemen" held at Tudum Theatre on February 28, 2024 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Buckner/Variety via Getty Images)
Michael Buckner via Getty Images

Theo James’ first day on set was a particularly big one

While viewers may recognise Theo James from the Divergent series or the 2022 TV adaptation of The Time Traveler’s Wife, the British actor had a huge year after being cast in the second season of The White Lotus.

It turns out that the hit series came out “literally the day we started” filming The Gentlemen, Theo revealed to the LA Times.

I felt so bad for you,” Kaya added. “It was day one on set and you were on the biggest show at the time. And your d—’s in it.”

Theo added that he wanted Cameron in The White Lotus to be very different to Eddie in The Gentlemen.

“He represents Britain,” he said of his Gentlemen character. “He’s quite closed in, both metaphorically and physically. He’s a watcher rather than a statement-maker, while Cameron represents that interesting part of Americana. It was almost going to the polar opposite.”

It shares filming locations with Bridgerton

It will come as no surprise that the lavish stately homes in The Gentlemen have been used in other film and TV projects.

Halstead Manor, where Eddie and brother Freddie (Daniel Ings) grew up, was filmed at Badminton House in Gloucestershire, which has also been used in Bridgerton.

The estate has also featured in movies like Pearl Harbour and 28 Days Later.
Stanley Johnston’s (Giancarlo Esposito) own estate in the show was filmed at Wrotham Park in Hertfordshire, which has also previously hosted Bridgerton season 2 along with The Crown and The Diplomat.

Pinky’s Club in The Gentlemen is also set in The Reform Club in Mayfair, another setting for Bridgerton, which was also used in Paddington 2.

The Printworks on February 16, 2023 in London, England.
The Printworks on February 16, 2023 in London, England.
Dave Benett via Getty Images

It was also filmed in a famous London music venue

While Printworks remains closed for the time being, the illegal boxing match in episode two of The Gentlemen was filmed in the iconic south London music venue.

Kaya Scodelario had a few stipulations about her character

It’s fair to say that Guy Ritchie’s filmography is mostly testosterone-filled, male-led stories, which Kaya Scodelario had some concerns about to ensure she didn’t fade into the background.

“It was something I was very concerned about, to be honest with you,” she told The Guardian.

“I insisted that I have a conversation with the showrunners to make sure that she [her character Susie Glass] would be a constant thread throughout the story, that she would have her own arc, that she would be front and centre. I didn’t want her to be swallowed up, which can happen, especially in a lot of Guy’s previous work.”

There are some very expensive accessories on show

In the world of the British aristocracy, it was only right that the costume departure splashed out on some very fancy wrist wear – over £6 million worth, in fact.

Loulou Bontemps, Guy Ritchie’s go-to costume designer, told GQ: “Doing the basic maths, we have at least six million pounds worth of watches in the show, which were all loaned out.

“Just to know that and to have that attention to detail is really good fun.”

Guy Ritchie
Guy Ritchie
Variety via Getty Images

The show took inspiration from an iconic gangster movie

“Guy always talked about the idea of Michael Corleone – someone who’s good and is a tactician, but slowly his soul gets kind of sucked from him because he’s seduced by violence,” Theo James told Sky News of his character, referencing Al Pacino’s iconic role in The Godfather.

He added in an interview with Sharp Magazine that they wouldn’t ever “emulate The Godfather, being one of the best films of all time”, but there were some parallels in the “linear story of someone coming back to their family, unexpectedly having to become the head of the family, and how their soul is poisoned by power.”

Guy Ritchie has a rather interesting style of directing

Imagining what the set of a Guy Ritchie production might look like, you’d be forgiven for thinking he runs a pretty tight ship. But the director is actually open to going with the flow, apparently.

“It was a bit of an odyssey because, you know, there’s the Guy of it,” Theo James told The Guardian. “You either give in or… it’s going to end badly for you! He has the script, and the story, but then, on the day, it’s completely rewritten in the room. The first couple of days, it’s a little bit of shock and awe.

“But you can be Ritchied at any point,” he went on. “Because you stop learning your lines, and he’s like, ‘No, I like that one. No changes here.’ And you’re like, ‘Oh fuck, I’ve got three speeches.’ You’re always on your toes.”

Kaya has made similar observations, telling Sky News: “He has a very unique style, which, to begin with, can be very anxiety-inducing.”

She added that, after learning all her lines, “everything that you’ve prepared gets thrown out of the window and you have to think on your feet”.

One filming location was neighbours with ABBA Voyage

We’re not sure what a Guy Ritchie x ABBA crossover would look like, but apparently things could get a little tricky at times filming at a car dealership right next door to the Abba Voyage show at Pudding Mill Lane, supervising location manager Iggy Ellis told House and Garden Magazine.

There are some nods to the 2019 film

While The Gentlemen TV show isn’t directly connected to the 2019 film, there are some little winks in there.

In the first episode, titled Refined Aggression, Freddy Horniman (Daniel Ings) is locked in a walk-in freezer as a threat to ensure he pays his debts, which mirrors a moment in the film when Mickey Pearson (Matthew McConaughey) forces Matthew Berger (Jeremy Strong) while making his own financial threat.

The show also pays homage to the film with the mention of the same weed strain, White Widow Super Cheese.

Theo James attends 'The Gentlemen" UK Series Global Premiere
Theo James attends 'The Gentlemen" UK Series Global Premiere
Anadolu via Getty Images

There was one “bollocks” line Theo James was very happy got cut

Guy Ritchie’s characters are famously silver tongued, but there was one line star Theo James was happy didn’t make it into the final cut.

Literally, someone said: ‘Tell me, what does make a gentleman?’, and then I said some bollocks about what a gentleman is, which changed about 15 times,” the actor recalled in an interview with Sharp Magazine.

“Thank God it got cut!” he said.

THAT chicken suit is actually made of real feathers

Yes, the now iconic chicken suit that Daniel Ings has a breakdown wearing, is indeed made of real feathers.

“I decided to make it out of real feathers, all bespoke, just to really heighten that whole scenario,” designer LouLou Bontemps told IndieWire. “Because it goes on and on and it’s traumatic and entertaining and fantastic. So we went full hog for that costume. We bought the chicken heads and the little chicken slippers that we attached to some sneakers. But the rest of the costume was all made bespoke.”

There’s a Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels reference

There’s even a reference in The Gentlemen to the wider Guy Ritchie cinematic universe. In a video feature with Netflix, Theo James revealed his favourite line in the whole series. At the end of the series, Kaya Scodelario’s Susie Glass tells Eddie: “It’s been emotional, captain.”

Big Guy Ritchie fans will know that as the same line delivered by Vinnie Jones in Guy’s 1988 classic Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (minus the captain).

That film was also an important part of Theo James’ teen years

Starring in The Gentlemen was a pretty big deal for Theo James, and not just because he got to be the lead in a huge Netflix show. In an interview with JoBlo, the actor said that Guy Ritchie’s early films had a big impact during his late teens, and remembered quoting lines from Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. “They had a big influence on us,” he shared.

One scene in particular made Kaya Scodelario anxious

Kaya Scodelario revealed that the scene that made her most “anxious” to film was actually Daniel Ings’ infamous chicken tantrum.

“I think it was more intense than that,” the former Skins star told Metro. “I actually felt really anxious during it. Daniel was giving it so much.

“Because this scene is at the end of episode one and you also see it at the beginning of episode two, it took twice as long to film because we’re doing it from so many different camera angles. It was about 18 hours straight of just Daniel being a chicken. It was intense.”

Ray Winstone had to keep his role a secret for two years

While The Gentlemen’s leading cast were announced back in 2022, Ray Winstone’s role in the show wasn’t revealed until the trailer dropped in 2024.

That means the actor had to keep schtum about his role as crime boss Bobby Glass for two whole years. “It wasn’t difficult to keep it under wraps because I’m not a grass,” he told Digital Spy. “I’d come in for a day or two days. It was almost like doing a job but it weren’t if you know what I mean, because it was a bit disjointed, you know.”

And the actor helped build Kaya Scodelario’s confidence

Describing both Ray and Vinnie Jones as “teddy bears”, Kaya confessed on Waitrose’s Dish podcast that she has “huge imposter syndrome”, but her fellow castmates helped her out. She explained: “I’m very socially awkward and quite shy, and I still on the first day of set will be like, ooh, and then realise I’ve been doing it for seventeen years and I probably have more experience than a lot of people there”.

But Ray was “really good at helping me step into that. He was very good at helping me, he really grew my confidence, where he was like, ‘Go on kid, just go for it.’ And I was like, ‘Okay, Ray!’”

The cast would drink real whiskey on set

It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that Guy Ritchie insisted on keeping things classy on set – even to the point where the cast shot scenes with real whiskey. Speaking on Waitrose’s Dish podcast, Kaya Scodelario said there was “lot of whiskey drinking in there”.

She added that Guy was “very insistent that we have very good, expensive, yummy whiskey on set” along with real wines. “I made friends with the props guy immediately,” Kaya added. “On wrap, everyone knew which truck to go to in the car park and talk to.

The Gentlemen is available to watch on Netflix now.


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