Hamish Bowles, European editor for the American edition of Vogue, recently revisited Castle Howard and wrote about it in an article appearing in the current issue of the magazine. He describes his early visit as a child with his father and then in the 1980s
…when I was just embarking on my studies at Saint Martin’s School of Art, we were enslaved to the television every Tuesday night to watch Granada Television’s magisterial adaptation of Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited, a novel of doomed Bright Young Things and spiritual redemption. The director, Charles Sturridge, who managed to cast many of the greatest actors of the period (Sir Laurence Olivier as Lord Marchmain, Sir John Gielgud as Mr. Edward Ryder, and a young Jeremy Irons as his son, in thrall to Anthony Andrews’s glamorous, spoiled, and irresistible Lord Sebastian Flyte), chose Castle Howard as the setting to represent Brideshead. Ever since, the house and its fabled grounds have been associated in the popular imagination with Waugh’s book. Even Julian Jarrold’s woefully inferior 2008 movie adaptation was (rather unimaginatively) also set there.
Bowles’ latest visit was at the invitation of the present owners.
In his description of the Granada TV film, Bowles mentions Charles Sturridge, one of the directors, as having chosen Castle Howard for the setting. In fact, Sturridge joined the crew as director after filming at Castle Howard had already begun. He replaced the original director Michael Lyndsay-Hogg who jointly decided on the selection of Castle Howard with producer Derek Granger. Because of a previous commitment, Lyndsay-Hogg was unable to continue as director after a prolonged disruption in production due to a strike. Lyndsay-Hogg left following the filming of the early episodes. The remaining episodes, making up most of the series, were directed by Sturridge, although he was not involved in the selection of Castle Howard as the setting nor was he involved in much of the casting.