Hamilton’s year at the cinema: These productions brought in money, recognition for the city in 2021
Have you ever wondered what could be filmed in your own backyard?
This year, the Hamilton Film Office was set to break records for the number of film productions and movie-related revenues brought to the city.
In 2021, many famous blockbusters were filmed across the city – in very recognizable spaces.
Alley of nightmares, in theaters now, is one of them. Directed by Guillermo del Toro, it tells the story of carnival man Stanton Carlisle (Bradley Cooper) who cheats on the wealthy alongside a psychiatrist (Cate Blanchett) and her husband.
Rooney Mara and Toni Collette are other big names in the film.
The film is set in New York City, but its filming locations in 2020 and early 2021 included Hamilton Cemetery, Cotton Factory, and Rebecca St Alley.
At a 2017 press conference at the Toronto International Film Festival, del Toro was passionate about his love for Hamilton, and cited it as a “city in transformation”, and even said he would be interested in have your own studio in town someday.
Alley of nightmares is one of five films that del Toro has shot in the city, others including The shape of water and Crimson woodpecker.
Other productions shot in Hamilton this year, according to the Internet Movie Database, include Chucky, based on Child’s play film franchise and is the sequel to Cult of Chucky. It was premiered in October.
@WhatsFilmingON “My Fake Boyfriend” with Dylan Sprouse, Keiynan Londsdale, Sarah Hyland is filming at Hunter & Catherine Streets in Hamilton. pic.twitter.com/Vufr4ZKbIG
by netflix Locke and key, again at the premiere, follows three siblings who, after their father’s murder, find mysterious keys that magically unlock the doors of their house. Fans may recognize Hamilton’s Playhouse Cinema in the acclaimed series.
Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City, released in November, was also seen filming at Scottish Rite in late 2020.
The star-studded LGBTQ romantic comedy my fake boyfriend, starring Keiynan Lonsdale, Dylan Sprouse and Sarah Hyland was seen filming around Hunter Street East and Catharine Street South, then in Hess Village. The film is slated for release in the summer of 2022.
This year also saw the filming of Rosie, a film written and directed by Indigenous director Gail Maurice.
Best known for her role in the CBC series Trickster like Georgina, Maurice’s new project shot here in the fall. The short was originally released in 2018, but this expanded version of the feature is slated for release next.
What will happen to make Hamilton a center of film production? The new Bayfront Studios were due to launch earlier this year – the Hamilton Spectator reported that it was open in July – part of Aeon Studio Group’s plans for a “studio district” in the city.
Earlier this year, Hamilton Music and Film Office received a nomination from Los Angeles-based Location Managers Guild International for their assistance in the popular Netflix show. The Umbrella Academy (even if he didn’t win in October). The Netflix series was filmed in popular locations across the city, such as Ottawa Street North and City Hall.
Kimberley Adrovez manages the Hamilton film office and told CBC Hamilton earlier this year that filming in the city has increased significantly since 2017.
Last year was set to be a banner year, but the pandemic put filming on hold for four months. Still, she said, the industry has done a good job avoiding a lot of disruption.
“We haven’t actually lost any business. Everything has been postponed,” she said.