Indian Summers, the latest colonial drama to hit British TV via Channel 4, is set in Simla, but filmed in Penang. Malaysia’s west coast island won out, after an extensive location search that covered Simla, Sri Lanka and Singapore.
Executive producer Charlie Pattinson recollects: “… I went up Penang Hill and breathed a sigh of relief. These properties were in a time warp: they absolutely summed up the idea of the British transporting their identity to a foreign land.” Even Penang’s chief minister got involved in the project, says Pattinson, as he knew some of the properties from his childhood. Read on for an insider’s view of life on set.