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The Movie: Little Women
The Location: Massachusetts
Released: 2020

The setting of Louisa May Alcott’s classic novel about the March sisters was based on her own childhood home in Concord, which can be visited  today as Louisa May Alcott’s Orchard House museum. Interestingly none of the numerous film and TV adaptions of the novel have used Boston as a filming location - until now. This latest film was shot in and around Massachusetts, making it the most authentic so visit in the footsteps of the movie-makers is a must.
This new version of the classic coming-of-age period drama is directed by actress and filmmaker Greta Gerwig . “To shoot in Concord, in Massachusetts, in this area, in this environment, was really essential in how I wanted to build this movie,” Gerwig told the Boston Globe. “It’s significant. The place matters as much as anything. The same way it was meaningful to shoot ‘Dunkirk’ at Dunkirk, it was meaningful to shoot this movie here.” 
 The film was shot in 11 Massachusetts municipalities with some sets  built from scratch. The March family’s home was a temporarily erected house on a property in Concord, rather than the Orchard House. But other scenes were shot at historic residences around the region, many of which are open to visitors. The Massachusetts Film Office also released a digital guide of filming locations.

The Laurence House, supposedly next door to the March’s. is actually a white mansion in Concord with woods and a pond nearby that were also used for the ice-skating scene. The interiors were filmed in the Nathaniel Thayer Estate, a historic Georgian Revival manor located in Lancaster.

Aunt March's mansion was filmed in the Eleanor Cabot Bradley Estate in Canton, open to visitors every day, sunrise to sunset, without charge.
The staircase scene in the Moffat House was shot at the Headquarters House also known on as William Hickling Prescott House, now a museum located at 55 Beacon Street in Boston. Built in 1808, the property is a National Historic Landmark, owned by the National Society of the Colonial Dames of America.
The Gardiner House where Jo meets Laurie in the New Year’s Eve ball is the Lyman Estate in Waltham also known as The Vale. This beautiful 1793 historic country mansion is surrounded by gardens.

Talking of gardens,  a scene with Amy and Aunt March in carriage driving through what is supposedly Paris, was actually filmed in the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University in Boston, founded in 1872, and located in the Jamaica Plain and Roslindale neighbourhoods of Boston.

The New Year’s Eve ball in Paris was shot in the Grand Ballroom at the elegant Fairmont Copley Plaza. Since its opening in 1912, this  luxurious hotel has become a legendary landmark in Boston.
Several scenes were filmed in the small and picturesque  town of Harvard in Worcester County. The Tailor's Shop in the film  is the picturesque Harvard General Store and Concord Theatre in the film is actually Harvard Town Hall .

Hilary Doling, Posted 17/02/2020
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