Everything you need to know about spooky Netflix series The Haunting of Bly Manor

Monday, 12th October 2020, 12:12 pm
Updated Monday, 12th October 2020, 12:13 pm
The series is based on a Henry James novella called The Turn of the Screw (Photo: Netflix)
The series is based on a Henry James novella called The Turn of the Screw (Photo: Netflix)

While The Haunting of Bly Manor was only released on Netflix on 9 October, the horror series has already become a massive hit in time for Halloween.

This is everything you need to know about the latest spooky offering from Mike Flanagan, the creator and writer behind The Haunting of Hill House.

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What is The Haunting of Bly Manor about?

The Haunting of Bly Manor follows the story of au pair Dani as she becomes the nanny for two children at the English countryside estate, Bly Manor, in the 1980s.

Slowly, Dani realises that the manor is home to a lot more than she first realised as it becomes clear that the premises is haunted.

Is Bly Manor a real place?

Bly Manor, the manor depicted in the spooky series, does not actually exist.

The manor is a fictional setting created by writer Henry James, who introduced the manor in his 1898 novella The Turn of the Screw, which acts as inspiration for the Netflix series. In James’ novella, Bly Manor is situated in Essex, which is just southeast of London.

Supposedly, Bly Manor was based on a real life mansion, which was said to be haunted. According to reports, James wrote Turn of the Screw after being inspired by an incident that took place at Hinton Ampner, in Alresford.

In 1765, the Ricketts family moved into the Tudor manor at Hinton Ampner - however, almost immediately, spooky goings on were reported by the family and house staff alike. Things like doors slamming at night, seeing ghostly figures and the sounds of footsteps were all experienced.

By 1772, the Ricketts family had moved out of Hinton Ampner, but disturbances at the estate still continued.

Where was The Haunting of Bly Manor filmed?

While the series is set in the English countryside, filming for the series took place in Vancouver, Canada.

Except for a few scenes, like the present-day wedding and brief shots of Dani in London, the whole show takes place on the grounds of the manor.

The production team has not revealed which specific venues were used to shoot scenes of Bly Manor, but it is understood that some shots of the interior of the manor were filmed on a set created at The Bridge Studios in Canada.

However, Netflix did release a fictional Zillow listing for Bly Manor. Zillow is a property site, like Zoopla or Right Move.

In the listing, it states that Bly Manor is located in the “English countryside” and described as “a perfectly splendid 17th-century home”.

How many episodes of The Haunting of Bly Manor is there?

In total, there are nine episodes of The Haunting of Bly Manor, available on Netflix. Each episode is roughly an hour long.

The season in full was released on Netflix on 9 October.

Who stars in The Haunting of Bly Manor?

While The Haunting of Bly Manor and The Haunting of Hill House are standalone shows, they are part of the same anthology series, and share many of the same stars playing entirely different characters.

The Haunting of Hill House alumni also starring in The Haunting of Bly Manor includes Victoria Pedretti (You, Shirley) as nanny Dani, Oliver Jackson-Cohen (The Invisible Man, Dracula) as the sinister Peter Quint, and Henry Thomas (Gerald's Game, Stargirl) as Henry Wingrave, the owner of Bly Manor.

T’Nia Miller (Years and year, Marcella) stars as housekeeper Hannah Grose and Rahul Kohli (iZombie, Supergirl) plays Owen, the Manor’s cook.

Tahirah Sharif (A Christmas Prince, One Night) stars as former nanny, Rebecca Jessel.

The Haunting of Bly Manor also introduces a number of newcomers to our TV screens, such as Benjamin Evan Ainsworth, who plays 10 year old orphan, Miles Wingrave.

Amelie Smith makes her first major on screen appearance in the programme, as Flora Wingrave, Miles’ sister. However, viewers might find Smith’s voice familiar as she started voicing the popular children’s character Peppa Pig earlier this year.

The show is also Amelia Eve’s biggest on screen role to date, as groundskeeper Jamie.

What is ‘the lung’?

Many who have already watched The Haunting of Bly Manor are curious about a particular storyline. In the show, a character called Viola gets ill - not with the plague, however, but with something referred to in the programme as “the lung”.

‘The lung’ is a euphemism for tuberculosis, which is a bacterial infection spread by the droplets from coughs or sneezes of an infected person.

“It mainly affects the lungs, but it can affect any part of the body, including the abdomen, glands, bones and nervous system,” the NHS explains.

After being diagnosed, Viola is only given months to live. However she refuses to die, and tells the priest who tries to give her her last rites, “Tell your God that I do not go.”

Today, tuberculosis is relatively easy to cure with a course of antibiotics taken over six months.

A version of this article originally appeared on our sister site Yorkshire Evening Post