FILMING on a Christmas movie is underway in York.

Principal photography has been finished on the comedy starring Elizabeth Hurley, John Cleese and Frasier actor Kelsey Grammer, called Father Christmas is Back.

Directed by Philippe Martinez and Mick Davis, the film is written by David Conolly and Hannah Davis Law, and Dylanne Corcoran based on an original idea by Martinez who also produces the film.

The filming location is being kept under wraps, but as The Press reported last month, Kelsey Grammer was seen shopping with his family at Waitrose in Foss Island Road and had been filming locally for his latest project Miss Willoughby and the Haunted Bookshop, which is also produced by Philippe Martinez for MSR Media and also stars Clash of the Titans actress, Nathalie Cox.

In the feel-good festive comedy, which also features the likes of Kris Marshall and, Caroline Quentin, Caroline Christmas is a control freak, who desires nothing more than a perfect Christmas with her sisters at her lavish country manor to atone for the fact that their father abandoned the family on December 25, many years ago.

When on Christmas Eve their long-lost father arrives at their doorstep with his new girlfriend chaos ensues. Through a series of mishaps and misunderstandings, Caroline uncovers a long-buried family secret… can the family still celebrate Christmas together after all?

Philippe Martinez said: “Following the successful shoot of Miss Willoughby and the Haunted Bookshop with Kelsey and Nathalie amid Covid-19 restrictions it proved that we can continue to make films safely and efficiently.

“People want to work so I am particularly happy to be directing this legendary cast, many of whom are friends I have worked with before including the amazing Liz, alongside my friend Mick Davis.

“We all need uplifting stories to inspire us and a big Christmas comedy like Father Christmas is Back is the perfect antidote to raise our spirits.”

The film’s financial partner is Kirsty Bell from Goldfinch, who serves as executive producer alongside Lee Beasley and Karinne Behr from MSR Media.