WINSTON CHURCHILL’S SECRETARY JOY HUNTER IN ATTENDANCE, ALONGSIDE MEMBERS OF CHURCHILL’S FAMILY, DARKEST HOUR SCREENWRITER ANTHONY MCCARTEN, ROYAL BRITISH LEGION WW2 VETERANS AND THE CHELSEA PENSIONERS
To celebrate the release of the award-winning film Darkest Hour on DVD, Blu-ray and Digital Download, Universal Pictures Home Entertainment was proud to partner with national veterans and armed forces charity The Royal British Legion for a one-of-a-kind charity auction that took place in central London this evening.
Recognised and established brands that were personal favourites of Winston Churchill donated a range of prizes for the auction with all proceeds going straight to The Royal British Legion to support their efforts in championing veterans and servicemen across the country. Brands who donated prizes for the auction include: Fortnum & Mason, Floris London, Derek Rose, Lock & Co Hatters, Turnbull & Asser, Wiltons, Berry Bros. & Rudd, The Savoy, Beaverbrook and of course The Wigmore, who donated a prize of Sunday Lunch for four people in their restaurant. The star prize of the night was a copy of the Darkest Hour script, signed by Gary Oldman.
Lead by experienced auctioneer Jon Baddeley of Bonhams auction house, a grand total of XXX was raised on the night (plus any details of any prizes which did particularly well).
Falling on the anniversary week of the D-Day landings, the event was attended by Winston Churchill’s Grandson Arthur Soames, Churchill’s Great Granddaughter Jennie Churchill, his former secretary Joy Hunter and Oscar/BAFTA nominee and writer of Darkest Hour Anthony McCarten. In addition to this, Universal Pictures UK and The Royal British Legion were honoured to host a number of WW2 veterans and Chelsea Pensioners of The Royal Hospital Chelsea.
The Royal British Legion’s Head of Remembrance Catherine Davies commented “It has been an honour to be part of such a prestigious event and it has been wonderful that our veterans have been part of the evening. The night has been a poignant reminder of the pivotal role that the Arts plays in keeping those that sacrificed so much, at the fore-front of our minds. The money raised from tonight’s auction allows us to continue our vital work in providing life-long support to the Armed Forces Community. Thank you to everyone involved.”
The auction was hosted as part of a celebration for the Home Entertainment release of Joe Wright’s soaring drama Darkest Hour. Gary Oldman’s Oscar-winning performance transports us to wartime Britain. As Hitler’s forces storm across the European landscape and close in on the United Kingdom, Winston Churchill (Oldman) is elected the new Prime Minister. With his party questioning his every move, and King George VI (Mendelsohn) sceptical of his new political leader, it is up to Churchill to lead his nation and protect them from the most dangerous threat ever seen.