A Location Growth Spurt for Videos, Haven for Video Production!
In a seemingly overnight growth spurt, this charming west-coast metropolis has become the third-largest film and television production center in North America has become the haven for video production.
Thanks to recent additions and innovations like a new Animation Campus, Game Design Program, and an official Youtube channel, it’s now globally recognized. Churning out hundreds of creative professionals yearly!
But you’re probably all context junkies, so here goes. Remember Lamb Chop’s Play-Along? Go ahead and thank Vancouver for your childhood.
X-Files was filmed here, and so were Stargate Atlantis and SG-1, Smallville, Psych, and apparently a show called “The Littlest Hobo” (you can expect a follow-up post on that). Now they’re filming the new Deadpool movie, the third in the new action-packed Star Trek franchise, and a solid handful of CW shows, among others.
So when did television production in Vancouver sneak up on us like that? …Must have been creeping in the bushes. In return surprising us with stunning settings and location!
Vancouver is a Haven for Video Production
Let’s start from the ground up. Where are the creators coming from? Well, that’s a combination of predominantly two parts.
- Part one is from within. Unlike the biggest television production schools in the United States, many of which were established in the 19th century, Vancouver Film School is less than thirty years old. Now it’s in the top two entertainment-centric schools in all of Canada.
- Part two involves what we’ll refer to as “cinema ratio”. Here are the four main factors causing filmmakers to migrate north.
These predominant traits in the development of video production in Vancouver encourage a lot of creative producers, videographers, editors, and a lot more. Creating a cesspool of talents that will continue to grow in the coming years.
Vancouver is a Location for Scouts, a Haven for Video Production
Ideal for faking it (a.k.a. pretending Superman is somewhere he’s not), B.C. comes complete with every topographical and man-made distinction you can think of.
Within 50 miles of downtown proper, you’ve got the ocean, lakes, rivers, mountains, bridges, islands, sky-scrapers, wineries, forests, fields, beaches, highways, cliffs, bluffs, and dirt roads right at your fingertips. Are we in 2051 Chicago? Are we at a base-camp in Tibet? Yes to both, almost year-round.
The Tax Credit Situation is Awesome
Vancouver’s tax credit baseline for qualifying cinematic work is 35%. This is more than any state in America besides Missouri (35%) and Puerto Rico (40%).
Even better, the qualifications exclude shitty reality TV. Think of it like skimming the (highly profitable but terrible for you) fat off the top. Video producers are enticed to shoot in Vancouver, but the city is managing to keep a more thoughtful, higher quality feel.
Weather is a Similar Story
Besides our continent’s great anomaly Los Angeles, there’s hardly a better place in the Northern Hemisphere to set up a long shooting schedule.
- Unlike Boston, New York, and Toronto, Vancouver’s winters are relatively mild and lacking relentless snowstorms.
- Unlike Atlanta, Seattle, New Orleans, or anywhere in Florida, Vancouver does not have torrential downpours, floods, thunderstorms, or 360 days of drizzle a year.
- And unlike Puerto Rico, you can throw your c-stands in the trunk and drive there.
The climatology of Vancouver applies to the entire Greater Vancouver region and not just to the City of Vancouver itself. While Vancouver’s coastal location serves to moderate its temperatures, sea breezes and mountainous terrain make Greater Vancouver a region of micro climates.
With local variations in weather sometimes being more exaggerated than those experienced in other coastal areas.
People are Lovely
The population is very diverse, not to mention notoriously friendly and easy to work with. In fact, television and video production regularly make various “friendliest cities in the world” lists. This makes collecting and corralling extras (which is often like nailing Jell-o to a tree) much more doable.
Additionally, people are enthusiastic. Residents revel in the novelty of having a Deadpool fight scene filmed blocks from their house, while their counterparts in the city of angels would most likely just bitch about gridlock and extra traffic on the 405.
So the next time you watch Juno, I Robot, X-Men, The Flash, Arrow, Once Upon a Time, or the Twilight Saga, think fondly of television production companies in Vancouver. And try to make your way up there during the Pacific National Exhibition.
About the Author
North Ripley is the Executive Producer for Red+Ripley and a Video Producer.
We’ve been producing videos for over two-decades after winning film festivals in high-school.
North is certified in digital film with a specialization in cinematography and has a multimedia diploma. He is a certified coach and project manager which he brings to his career in producing.
He created Red+Ripley with two other business partners to focus on collaborative and custom video production with customer service and final products clients are excited to share!
If you’re looking at working with a professional process, give us a call or send us an email. I’m sure we can make recommendations or help with some ideas!
Please contact North directly with any video production inquiries.