How many times have red London double deck Routemasters
been used in movies to let audiences know that the film’s in London? Take the Ipcress File of 1965. As Michael Caine escapes from his stark Albanian prison, what’s the first scene that tells him and his shocked audience that he wasn’t in Tirana after all, but London? Yup, a London double deck, like one of the last on Service 159, above.
A lesser London icon of TV and film is the black London cab. In this shot, it’s not the sixties designed TX4 variant but a modern, faithful, sharper TX1, but instantly recognisable all the same.
Since the Routemaster can no longer legitimately be used by contemporary motion picture producers, they need to find other means. Have you noticed how the London Eye now commonly fulfills this role? It’s transport, but of a very different kind.
It’s unusual to see all three captured together. It’ll be rarer still in the future.
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