The California-based streaming giant Netflix is setting up a dedicated production hub in Toronto, which film and TV creators hope will provide new opportunities for local talent and a much needed boost to the Canadian Film and TV Production Industry.
The company has announced that it is expanding its presence in Canada by leasing two studio spaces. One at Cinespace Studios where Netflix is leasing four new sound stages, which are currently under construction and set to be operational this summer along with spaces for office and support work totalling approximately 164,000 square feet. The other location is at Pinewood Toronto Studios where Netflix is going to lease four sound stages and adjacent office space totalling 84,580 square feet.
Pinewood said Netflix will move a production onto one of its sound stages in the next couple of weeks. The four sound stages being leased are separate from a Pinewood Toronto Studios’ previously announced planned for expansion at the studios.
Netflix said the commitment will provide jobs for up to 1,850 Canadians per year, and that the leases are “multi-year” agreements.
It also leases British Columbia’s Martini Film Studios and production sites across Canada on a case-by-case basis.
Speculation of a Toronto hub started swirling last month when Mayor, John Tory, who has been making annual trips to Los Angeles to lure film and TV projects to the city told The Canadian Press he had “a very high level of confidence” that Netflix would open one up.
Tory’s words drew positive reaction from local screen talent who said they hoped it would foster Canadian projects and it looks as if his attempt has worked with the recent Netflix announcement.
By Jamie Barrie