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Best Year For The Film Industry Since SARS!

If ACTRA’s quasi-strike isn’t enough of a blow to Canada’s dwindling film industry, another one recently hit that will also give American productions another reason not to shoot in Toronto. Which is great, because no one likes money — especially American money.
Word on the street is that TEDCO and Mayor David Miller recently mandated the imminent closure of the Pier 28 Cinespace Studios. The lot is 140,000 sq feet which is big enough to house four big budget features and is home to countless employees throughout the year.
Among the many great films that have shot at Cinespace Studios are Glitter, The Brady Bunch Goes to DC, New York Minute… wait, sorry, wrong list. Here we go, Boondock Saints, X-Men, Detroit Rock City, Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle, The SAW trilogy, Chicago and many, many more.
Toronto needs more studio space, not less. Some folks have started a petition to delay the February 21st closure of the studios, and for those of you that like name dropping; George Romero signed it.
He told us that if you signed it he’d let you be a zombie in his next movie. (That’s a lie, but it’s an awesome lie, so just go with it and sign the damn petition if you want.)
Thanks to Heather for the info and the Romero screen cap. Photo by Sandra Freyler from the Torontoist Flickr Pool.


  • brokenengine

    Thats brutal! And whats the reason for the closure? More ugly and ridiculously priced condo’s?

  • rek

    Wow, I didn’t know Romero lived here.
    On a semi-related note: Are there any sites or blogs out there that pay a decent amount of attention to the Canadian film industry? Why do I know more about upcoming Japanese, Korean, and Russian movies than about those being shot right here?

  • http://null dane.

    that’s the rumour.

  • Marc Lostracco

    It’s not about Canadian film, but the “TV, Eh” website is fantastic for keeping tabs on every single Canadian show on the air right now.

  • http://null shooter mcgavin.

    OMDC publishes a bi-weekly list of what productions are shooting in Toronto. (Under Film & Television – In Production)

  • Kate

    Also This Magazine’s Film club is a great place to learn about CDN cinema.

  • mm

    Did you all forget that filmport is coming? More than twice the size of Cinespace.
    As far as I know funding is pretty secure for Filmport and if completed will be an awesome addition to the bleak landscape that is the portlands.

  • http://null paul

    True, but it’s not supposed to be ready till early 2008.

  • heather d.

    filmport is not even close to being finished, and they want to close cinespace many, many, many, many months before filmport will be ready to take in shows.
    if the studio is closed, this is going to result in a lot of people not working this year. a lot of people who have families and bills to pay.
    it just seems stupid to close the space when we don’t have new space to go to yet.

  • rek

    If one closes before the other opens, production companies are going to have to look elsewhere for facilities. Who says they’ll come back to Toronto when Filmport is ready?

  • heather d.

    EXACTLY! so many u.s. studios are already pissed off at toronto for various other reasons. why give them just another reason not to shoot here?

  • matt

    Miller is an idiot. First he hides behind the Island Airport using it as an excuse to not get started with revitalizing the waterfront, and second he’s destroying one of the most important industries in this city. The TTC is a disaster and a global embarrassment… Fuck, bring Mel back, at least the guy got stuff done.

  • Sass

    I posted about this over at metafilter. I love the Romero quote – nice digging!

  • Martin

    hey george a romero… are you best director!! and i wanna a zombie…..
    if u can intive then email me anytime okay

  • someone

    Filmport is a business deal!!! There is no interest in building up the film industry don’t be fooled.
    Let me tell you all something Toronto Film Studios who is to become Filmport is being run by a husband and wife team, well…it’s being run by the wife who tells the husband what to do. You’re talking about people who know nothing about the film industry. When the concept of Filmport started it was a good idea but now it’s all about the money. First off the reason there building the studios is so that afterwards they can build condos and retail space around the studios. TFS has had some great staff on board with them and they can not hold anybody there, Everyone leaves within 1 to 2 years cause the place is run like a joke. There is so much potential there but the president is so busy sucking up to Rose Corp. Meanwhile they have sold the existing TFS location to Walmart and plan to build condos to the remainder of the space, in the next year or two that TFS studios will be gone regarless if Filmport is built or not. So why is Vancouver the new Hollywood North? Cause we have idiots in Toronto trying to get rich and don’t give a dam about this industry at all. And regardless of what anyone says funding can be pulled at any time from Filmport, let’s see how long Rose corporation will entertain this project!!!

  • Someone

    Will Alsop, the British architect acclaimed for his irreverent buildings, has been hired to create an iconic building for the Filmport, in Toronto’s port lands. The mega-project will sit across from the much-anticipated and much-delayed Commissioners Park — the first newly designed public space for the port lands. Quadrangle Architects of Toronto previously completed a master plan for the Filmport. Alsop’s involvement, to define the character outside the mega-studio gate, includes the first of several signature buildings, and a corporate office space for film producers, post-production and animation firms. The media village will include restaurants, public plazas and entertainment venues