Monday, February 8, 2010

28 Reasons I Love Hamilton... Reason 8

Why write 28 reasons I love Hamilton?

1. Hamilton is a CITY.
2. The Location
3. The size (population)
4. The scale
5. Creativity and the arts
6. The buildings
7. The nature

8. The film industry

You've probably seen this commercial:

You may not have realized it was shot completely in Hamilton. How about this one?

We moved here in October 2007... and for some reason, some main streets downtown were always closed for film shoots. I'm pretty sure that's because what is now the 2-million renovated London Tap House was the Hulk set.

I had no idea about that - or about any of the film industry here. I knew the railway station was used in X-Men and that was about it.

Since then, I've realized just how many movies I've seen were filmed here, walked by a lot more movie shoots, seen just how many are being made, and met a lot more people in the film industry. It employs people of various skill levels in a wide variety of jobs. And job creation in this city is one of our biggest needs.

In the film industry, we've got a good thing going.

I hope we can make it even better. A pretty comprehensive article was just published on Sunday about what's happening right now in Hamilton.

As they mention, we've already got momentum happening with tax credits, location, staff, people, and settings. We film more large projects, proportionately, and fewer small ones, which is both good and bad. Hamilton's a stand-in for other cities and also plays itself at times.

The last couple paragraphs mention the newly proposed Creative Catalyst project - (early proposal here and much more recent report here) which would include studio space.

Not that the "triple bottom line" means much anyhow, but I find it very encouraging that the early report did not recognize that it would make Hamilton a city of choice and make people want to be here... and as they've learned more, the city checked the "yes" box beside that item -- the city is recognizing that arts, culture, media bring economic benefits and attract people... even "high performance public servants."

They also mention the need for better hotel space. (I've said ever since I moved here we need a boutique hotel, and there's several locations to build one. Smaller, unique, individual, specialized. There's five locations and concepts I can think of within seconds.) I know studio projects have been tried before... but I think one can stick. Another that's not a potential part of this project would be a great use for a former brownfield.

I love being in a city that movies are made in. I love how it adds to the city. And that's another reason I love Hamilton.

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