If Surrey is to Vancouver as New Jersey is to New York City, then it’s a little more than just a growing city south of the Fraser River.
Surrey and Vancouver exist as a complimentary pair when it comes to economics, none more apparent than the booming film and television production industry throughout the province.
While Hollywood continues to take advantage of the low Canadian dollar, film & TV tax credits and a variety of shooting locations, that means local jobs for growing casts and crews as well as ancillary economic stimulus in transportation and hospitality. So, Surrey is cutting a piece of the business pie too as it offers its own variety of unique locations for filming.
Last year was a record year for film permits issued by the City, and this year has already surpassed that number. According to Surrey’s film liaison James Monk, 152 permits have been issued year to date which is on track to double the 97 issued in all of 2015.
That growth is also reflected by the new 75,000 square foot Skydance Media studio space which opened in the Newton area and will be used for Altered Carbon, a new sci-fi series for Netflix.
All the big streaming networks like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon have series productions being filmed around Metro Vancouver. The Canadian service CraveTV, owned by Bell Media, has a couple original programs out of Ontario but can easily come to British Columbia as they expand their content.
Similar to Surrey, the town of Steveston Village in Richmond has also sustained commercial success with the filming of ABC’s hit fairy tale family drama series Once Upon A Time and big blockbuster films like Power Rangers.
Written by Amar Mirchandani @amarmirch