Alberta's economy is about to get a big boost, thanks to the opening of the $28-million Calgary Film Centre.
Alberta has been a destination for filmmakers for decades. From sweeping prairies to the breathtaking Rocky Mountains, the province is chock-full of incredible film locations. Now, thanks to the Calgary Film Centre, directors will be able to film interior scenes in the province as well, instead of flying back to Vancouver or L.A.
The facility consists of three sound stages that make up a combined total of about 50,000 square feet, with another 35,000 square feet of workshop and production space.
"What we’ve done now is create purpose-built facilities that understand all the metrics that are necessary for this industry specifically. They can walk in, they can start setting up and off they go," Luke Azevedo, film and television commissioner with Calgary Economic Development, told the Calgary Herald.
Alberta's film and television industry employs about 4,000 people, and is responsible for about $150 million in production spending every year. The province's crews have received over 50 Academy Award nominations and 90 Emmy nominations.
Officials are hoping the film centre will not only bring in production, but will help diversify the province's economy by creating more jobs in the film and television sector.
“Alongside just the film production coming in, there’s hundreds and hundreds of people in crews and talent that will be provided work through those systems,” said film centre manager Erin O’Connor in an interview with CTV News.
"Culture is one of the pillars that we need to ensure that this city and this province develops in a way that's meaningful and continues to grow," Azevedo told CBC News.
The film centre is located in southeast Calgary's industrial area. The space's anchor tenant will be William F. White International, which will provide production equipment to projects shooting in the centre.
Recent productions shot in Alberta include "The Revenant," "Fargo," "Interstellar" and "Hell on Wheels."
The first production to shoot in the new facility will be western television series "Tin Star." The show will be helmed by British director Rowan Joffe and will star Christina Hendricks and Tim Roth, according to IMDB.
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