Jeremy Irons brings to life the last great English landscape designer of the eighteenth century – Humphry Repton in our animation “A Generous Deceit”.

Humphry Repton is famous for producing “Red Books” – books of watercolours and writings that he wrote for prospective clients who owned large country estates. In the books he included notes on the current state of the houses and gardens and also suggestions on how they could be improved. The watercolours have pop up flaps on them that show the “before” and “after” elements of the estate improvements.

The Garden Museum asked us to make a film on Repton’s Red Book of Armley House near Leeds for their exhibition “Repton Revealed”. The film’s Director Dorothea Gibbs and Museum Director Christopher Woodward abridged Repton’s writings on Armley house into a script and asked Jeremy Irons to play Repton. Jeremy has a strong knowledge of Garden History and was brilliant at interpreting the real meaning of Repton’s words.

It then took Animator Tom Langton six weeks to bring alive the water colours – the animations slowly adding colour to the watercolours as you listen to Repton’s imagination.


Repton’s Voice: Jeremy Irons
Director: Dorothea Gibbs
Animator: Tom Langton
Score: Diego Carceres, Santiago Posada
Special Thanks: Oak Spring Garden Library, Garden Museum
Production Assistant: Loren Simon