2020 most lucrative year on record for Okanagan movie industry | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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2020 most lucrative year on record for Okanagan movie industry

Crews filming in Penticton for the Hallmark movie "Summer in the Vineyard" in June 2017.
January 20, 2021 - 12:14 PM

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, movie-making in the Okanagan pulled in more cash in 2020 than ever before.

Film production in the Okanagan is estimated to have brought in just under $50-million in economic impact to the region.

According to an Okanagan Film Commission report, 23 productions spent $48,830,000 filming in the Okanagan last year. This number surpasses all previous years, says the report.

While the The Angel Tree, Love And Romance, Oregon, and Romance at Crystal Cove, aren't exactly Hollywood blockbusters there is no ignoring the cash they splash around when they're filming in the region.

Hallmark TV movie Angel Tree reportedly spent $1.5-million filming in Summerland last October, while Love And Romance, Oregon spent $1.8 million shooting around Kelowna during the summer. Hallmark movie Romance at Crystal Cove spent $1.5-million during its time filming in Summerland in the fall.

The coming-of-age movie Change of Pace which pays homage to the 1980s and was filmed in Penticton last September and shelled out $4.5-million during its two-week stay in the city. The movie is currently in post-production with no release date as yet.

The biggest spending movie in 2020 was Dangerous starring Mel Gibson and Clint Eastwood's son Scott Eastwood. According to Variety magazine, Eastwood plays a reformed sociopath who, following his brother's death heads to a remote island under siege by a gang of deadly mercenaries. It's unclear when the film will be released.

According to the Okanagan Film Commission report, the organization had a budget of $283,000 last year. Its largest contributor was a $140,000 grant from the Central Okanagan Regional District. The Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen put forward $45,000 and the North Okanagan Regional District $44,000.

The report says a high-end motion picture budget with a full unionized crew will spend roughly US$100,000 per day. A non-unionized low-end movie will spend about US$35,000 a day, and a made for TV movie about US$85,000 a day.

The report also says it has productions booked well into the summer of 2021 but doesn't give any movie titles.


To contact a reporter for this story, email Ben Bulmer or call (250) 309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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