The 10-part Netflix series Maid, which is being exclusively shot in Greater Victoria, was filming near Prospect Lake in Saanich last month. (Photo courtesy Fred Haynes)

The 10-part Netflix series Maid, which is being exclusively shot in Greater Victoria, was filming near Prospect Lake in Saanich last month. (Photo courtesy Fred Haynes)

Province announces $150,000 towards film studio, fulfilling B.C. NDP promise

Investment to fund movie studio feasibility study at Camosun College

Saanich is $150,000 closer to calling “Action!” on a film studio at Camosun College.

On Saturday (April 10), the province announced it would be following through on its campaign promise to fund a feasibility study for a proposed film studio and training facility at the college’s Interurban campus – near the Pacific Institute for Sport Excellence.

READ ALSO: Saanich calls for lights, camera, government funding for movie studio construction

Before the snap election in October, South Island NDP candidates Murray Rankin for Oak Bay-Gordon Head, Lana Popham for Saanich South and Rob Fleming for Victoria-Swan Lake announced that a re-elected NDP government would contribute to a business study for the film studio.

“We have the skilled people and the stunning locations to attract international productions to the South Island. The only thing holding us back is that we don’t have the competitive sound stages,” Rankin said at the time.

Following the funding announcement, Rankin, MLA for Oak Bay-Gordon Head, emphasized that the investment is the first step towards determining just how local post-secondary students and the region would benefit from a film studio.

READ ALSO: Saanich mayor holds B.C. NDP to campaign promise to fund movie studio study

Popham added that the investment could help Camosun make its sound stage plans a reality and attract international productions while training the next generation of T.V. and movie industry workers.

The concept of bringing a movie studio to the region isn’t new.

Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes noted it’s been a “three-year journey of active work” from various stakeholders – Camosun College specifically has been in talks with potential partners since 2019 towards bringing a training facility and sound stages to the campus.

In March 2020, Saanich council approves the establishment of a movie studio in the Capital Regional District, citing the economic advantages and job creation.

READ ALSO: Proposed Saanich studio part of a larger push to capture Hollywood dollars

Sherri Bell, president of Camosun, noted that bringing this infrastructure to the campus would provide educational opportunities ranging from carpentry and electrical programs to industry skills training programs such as digital animation.

“I’m just delighted we’ve gotten this far,” Haynes told Black Press Media on April 9. “This is the location on the South Island” for production companies as the region’s mild climate permits year-round filming and members of the industry “have already expressed strong interest.”

The $150,000 investment will go towards developing a business plan and design concept with community consultation, followed by requests for proposals from the private sector to construct the multi-million dollar facility, Haynes explained. Camosun will also be establishing an advisory committee to assist with the planning process.

He added that the province has also committed to spending just under $2 million to construct a new road off Interurban Road to the proposed studio site in an effort to “off-cycle” increased traffic related to productions as Saanich residents expressed concerns.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

District of SaanichFilm industryProvincial Government

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

TEASER PHOTO ONLY
Surrey woman a face of World Ovarian Cancer Day campaign in London, New York

‘It’s so important we find better treatments,’ Catherine Eiswerth says

Flags flown at half mast out front of Fraser Regional Correctional Centre for slain corrections officer Bikramdeep Randhawa. (Neil Corbett/ The News)
Public vigil and flying flags at half mast done to honour slain prison guard

Maple Ridge corrections officer Bikramdeep Randhawa, 29, is being remembered in a number of ways

Surrey-White Rock MLA Trevor Halford and Surrey South MLA Stephanie Cadieux. (Contributed photos)
BC NDP ‘chose to create a system of chaos’ by holding back COVID-19 data: Cadieux

South Surrey MLAs criticize provincial government after BCCDC documents leak

The map shows the number of COVID-19 cases for the week of April 25 to May 1. The darkest areas indicate communities with a daily average of more than 20 cases per 100,000 population. (BC Centre of Disease Control)
Surrey and Abbotsford battle for top COVID hotspot in Fraser Health

Two communities are among areas across province showing highest transmission

A woman walks past a long lineup that snaked through the parking lot at the Cloverdale Rec. Centre April 27 after Fraser Health allowed people age 30 and over from “high-transmission neighbourhoods” to access the AstraZeneca shot. The temporary vaccination centre is located on the Cloverdale Fairgrounds. (Photo: Malin Jordan)
Cloverdale now considered a ‘high-transmission area’

Anyone 30 and over can now register for a vaccine

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. to start releasing neighbourhood-specific COVID numbers after data leak

Documents obtained by the Vancouver Sun show cases broken down by neighbourhoods

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix update B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count creeps up, seven more deaths

445 people in hospital, 157 in intensive care

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Summerland’s positive test rate is much higher than surrounding local health areas, according to internal BC CDC documents. (BC CDC)
Summerland 3rd behind Surrey, Abbotsford in daily per capita COVID-19 cases

Interior Health is rolling out additional vaccine availability to the community

Mandeep Grewal was gunned down outside an Abbotsford bank in October 2018. Police said a violent gang war to control drug-line territory was going on at that time. Drug charges have now been announced against seven people. (FILE PHOTO: John Morrow/Abbotsford News)
7 people face 38 charges related to gang drug activity in Abbotsford and Mission

Police say investigation began in 2018 into expansion of Brothers Keepers’ drug line

Amazon is pausing its Prime Day marketing event in Canada this year amid ongoing COVID-19 outbreaks at its facilities in Ontario. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Amazon Prime Day halted in Canada due to COVID-19 outbreaks in warehouses

The event was postponed to protect the health and safety of employees and customers, the company says

Ally Thomas, 12, seen in an undated family handout photo, died on April 14 from a suspected overdose. Her family says they are frustrated more public supports weren't available when they tried to get her help. THE CANADIAN PRESS
Minister says suspected overdose death of 12-year-old pushing B.C. to ‘do better’

Minister Sheila Malcolmson of Mental Health and Addictions says the government is working ‘as hard as we can’ to build a system of care for youths

At this Highway 3 check point, police officers will be asking for identification from drivers, documentation regarding the driver’s name and address, and the purpose for the driver’s travel. (RCMP)
No fines handed out at 1st COVID-19 roadblock as checks move across B.C.

Cpl. Chris Manseau says a total of 127 vehicles were stopped at a roadblock in the Manning Park area

Most Read