Created by Candice Carty-Williams, ‘Champion’ is a musical drama series that focuses on Bosco and Vita Champion, two siblings who risk getting their relationship turned into rivalry in pursuit of achieving their respective dreams of making it big as musicians. Bosco is an up-and-coming artist whose sister, Vita, supports him through thick and thin — be it ghostwriting his songs, sorting out his problems with stage fright, or bailing him out of the police station. Vita is not only taken for granted by her brother but also by her mother.
Therefore, when she receives the opportunity of a lifetime to record her own work, Vita snatches onto it, even if it means going head-to-head against her brother, Bosco. Consequently, the two siblings turn to rivals in a quest for musical stardom and fame. Set in South London, the show not only features impressive performances from cast members, including Déja J Bowens, Malcolm Kamulete, Ray BLK, Nadine Marshall, Ray Fearon, Jo Martin, and Karl Collins, but also features some interesting London-like sites, giving rise to questions about the actual filming locations of ‘Champion.’
Champion Shooting Locations
Filming for ‘Champion’ takes place in England and Jamaica, specifically in the cities of Birmingham and Kingston, respectively. The inaugural season of the Netflix production was seemingly shot in the summer of 2022 through the month of October. Let us traverse through all the scenic sites that serve as shooting location of the musical drama television series.
A major chunk of ‘Champion’ is lensed in Birmingham, an English city lying in the metropolitan county of West Midlands. In particular, the industrial and residential area of Selly Oak serves as one of the primary production locations for the rap-based series. For instance, Emma’s Pantry at 80 Raddlebarn Road in the aforementioned neighborhood was transformed into a London-based cafe called Aria’s Cafe for recording a few sequences.
The production team painted the site with bright yellow to create a Caribbean theme for the purpose of shooting some important scenes for the debut season of the drama show. Every member from the cast and crew had a lot of fun during the filming of season 1 and many even took to their respective social media accounts to express the same. Creator Candice Carty-Williams shared her experience making the series by sharing a picture alongside a heartfelt caption on Instagram. She penned, “There’s too much for me to say here so all I’ll say is that making this show almost killed me… but it’s the most rewarding thing I’ve ever created and executed in my life and I don’t think that anything else will come close.”
Thanking everyone involved in the creative process, she further wrote, “Eternal and limitless love and thanks to most who were on the journey, and big gratitude to everyone who put up with me calling them up all times of night and day to say ‘okay but what if we [insert mad thing here]’ and then helped me to do it. Pain is the essence the game is a lesson etc. I think we’ve made something incredible.” Apart from the Netflix production, several other titles such as ‘Nativity Rocks!,’ ‘Take Me High,’ ‘Euphoria,’ and ‘Dancing on the Edge’ also used the locales of the City of a Thousand Trades as their filming site.
The sprawling city of Kingston in the southeastern coast of the island of Jamaica is also one of the places where ‘Champion’ is taped. According to reports, four weeks of shooting took place in the capital city of the Caribbean island nation. Home to the iconic Bob Marley Museum and several clubs that make people groove to the beat of the genre, Kingston is often termed as “the birthplace of reggae music.”
Apart from celebrating the traditional music culture and genres such as ska, dub, rocksteady, dancehall, mentor, the port city also has one of the largest natural harbors in the world. These factors make it an ideal filming destination for a show such as the musical drama series. Therefore, it is understandable why the cast and crew chose it as a production location. Over the years, Kingston has served as a shooting site for many movies and television shows such as ‘No Time to Die,’ ‘One Life to Live,’ ‘Bob Marley: One Love,’ and ‘I Am Bolt.’
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