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Moving to Canada - Best city for the film industry ?


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Hi all,

I will probably move to Canada next year, and I was wondering what city I should consider to find work and people to connect with in the film industry ?
Right now, I do some DP/AC work and also direct on small budget music videos, short films & commercials and willing to work on projects with bigger crews.

In France, where I am right now everything film related is pretty much in Paris.
I work there sometimes, as I'm 2h from there by train and have connexions, family there.

So, I'm mostly looking at Toronto or Montreal and considering Vancouver for the proximity with LA.

From what I understand, the scene in Toronto seems bigger but everything is pricier and the competition is harsh.
Montreal seems like a nicer place, cheaper,  plus I speak both languages - but less work and competition I guess, might be a good entry point before moving to Toronto or other ?

Also, very interested in knowing if there are Labs/scan facilities and rental houses that have film cameras, especially s16 !

Thanks !

Edited by Antoine Pret
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In Montreal you've got Mels (formerly vision globale), world class lab and scanning with all the bells and whistles like rushes but on the pricey side.

Toronto has Niagara custom lab which is absolute dogsh*t top to bottom in my personal experience (and many of my friends): Old chem, no guaranteed timeline, dusty dry box, low quality scan, bad service etc. Plus they'll charge you out the wazoo.

For the past couple years I've been sending all my film to Cine-lab across the border in MA. No issues and great quality stuff at a much better rate but similar quality to MELS.


For s16 gear rental in Toronto you've got LIFT (Liaison of Independent Filmmaking Toronto). You have to pay a fee to join and then you get access to their gear at cheap rates (in the great tradition of north american film co-ops). They have several aatons and some good 16mm lenses, including some bayonet mount mki superspeeds and some Angie zooms.

I think some of the bigger houses rent s16 gear as well like SR3s and 416s and whatnot but at that point you're looking at some pretty steep rates.

hope this was helpful!

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I'd go for Montreal if you speak french.

Toronto is where most of the industry is though, so if you really want to get to a higher level that's where you'll need to be.

Vancouver is like a 20hr drive from LA, I wouldn't say its close at all.

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