Fans pack Metro Vancouver theatres to catch a glimpse of hometown on screen
It’s a local success story and one inspiring optimism in one of B.C.’s biggest industries.
Vancouver-shot Deadpool is smashing box office records, a sign that the local film industry is once again resurgent.
The latest numbers from Box Office Mojo estimate Deadpool’s three-day weekend take at $135 million domestically, and $260 million worldwide.
That’s enough to give it the biggest February opening of all time (beating Fifty Shades of Grey by $45 million), as well as the biggest opening by an R-rated movie (topping The Matrix Reloaded by more than $43 million).
It also puts the film ahead of first-tier superhero blockbusters Iron Man, Man of Steel, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Spiderman.
It’s a big win for Vancouver-born star and producer Ryan Reynolds, who was one of the driving forces behind getting the film made.
Fox studios had been wary of investing heavily in an R-Rated film – however, the weekend’s performance all but assures we’ll see a sequel.
City and film industry take starring role
Along with Reynolds, the city of Vancouver itself plays a big role in the film – with plenty of recognizable locations.
Chief among them, the Georgia Viaduct, which was closed for a week while the Hollywood film crews performed elaborate car crash scenes.
At the time, City of Vancouver transportation director Jerry Dobrovolny hinted the commuter inconvenience would be worth it, saying it would bring millions of dollars to the local economy and create 1,100 jobs.
Vancouver’s Chinatown, and several well known (and notorious) downtown eastside venues also play a big part (though we’ll let you watch and pick them out for yourselves).
Dobrovolny also said a number of locations worldwide were considered before Vancouver was chosen.
Prem Gill, with Creative B.C., says while the city might be getting screen time, it’s the film sector that’s in the spotlight.
“It’s a strong industry right now.”
She says films like Deadpool are helping to show off the fact that B.C. boasts a state of the art full delivery system for film and T.V., from shooting to post production and VFX – and that the upcoming season will keep the industry busy.
“Programs like iZombie, we know that ‘The X-Files’ is quite successful, so maybe they’ll be back this summer, there are already rumours of Deadpool 2, we’ve got a couple series that Netflix is looking at up here.”
According to the Canadian Motion Picture Association, Deadpool hired over two thousand local cast, crew, and extras who earned more than $19 million in wages.
With files from Matt Lee