There are many reasons to call Vancouver home. The spectacular natural beauty of the area, the proximity to other big cities and the progressive nature of the city are only a few of the reasons to love Vancouver. But for the celebrity seeker, the film industry in Vancouver is a compelling reason to relocate to this gem city in British Columbia.
So if you are not up-to-date on the film industry in Vancouver you may be thinking this is the home of some quirky little documentary or low budget indie film; couldn’t be further from the future. Blockbusters have found a home in Vancouver, and the supporting film technology industry has made it especially appealing for special effects, animation and high tech film production. So for both the small and big screen, Vancouver has become a growth market for filmmakers. Films like I Robot, Fantastic Four, Twilight: New Moon, Juno and X-Men have used Vancouver for a production base. Series like Fringe, Psych and Eureka have also been produced in Vancouver.
Known as “North Hollywood”, Vancouver is just two hours by flight from Los Angeles and offers a green, progressive area for the film industry. It is a culturally diverse market with a well-educated work force. The greenbelt and active live style are appealing for the film professionals as well.
The British Columbian Film Commission was established in 1978 to encourage film production to the coast providence. The focus of the commission is to show how the area has the technology, technicians, filmmakers and production facilities to create extraordinary films and TV series but also can do so affordably. 2009 in British Columbia generated more than $1.3 billion dollars from more than 239 productions in featured and independent films as well as TV favorites.
With all this production come celebrities and star sightings. Local markets, bars and restaurants as well hotels can be great locations for catching a glimpse of stars in the productions. With production of feature films, there is often little down time, but locals often report the flurry of activity during shooting high-energy scenes, bringing excitement and stars to local streets and shops. Locals claim some of the hottest spots for seeing stars include: Four Seasons, the Metropolitan, Opus Hotel and Opus Bar and The Wedgewood Hotel and Bacchus Lounge.
Celebrities and screen stars have also been known to call Vancouver home. In 2002 Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell purchased a Vancouver estate for just under $3 million, which went back on the market in 2008. The advent of Google maps and other programs have allowed the development of celebrity home tracking websites that give you a bird eye view of Vancouver star owned homes.
If you are one of the 30,000 film production crew members of Vancouver or one of the millions of star seekers, investing in Vancouver real estate may be a great investment for more than just your net worth; it may allow you a front row view of the celebrities working on the next major blockbuster.