Story Ideas

10 things you need to know about…famous Hollywood movies filmed in Canada.

This country has been the surprising location for many cinematic blockbusters, from Twilight and Brokeback Mountain to Titanic and Inception.

29 October 2014

Suggested tweet: 10 famous Hollywood movies with Canadian connections #explorecanada

Canada is a go-to destination for Hollywood’s leading lights. Many of Tinseltown's biggest blockbusters have been filmed entirely or partially in America’s photogenic northern neighbour, with the cities, towns and landscapes of the Great White North admirably filling in for their southern cousins.

So you think you know Kansas from Winnipeg or Montana from Alberta? Here are 10 Hollywood films with a cinematic Canadian connection that may surprise you.

1) Twilight: Most of the exterior shots for this hugely popular teen vampire series were shot in and around Vancouver and British Columbia’s scenic Lower Mainland, which respectively masqueraded as the town of Forks and Washington State’s Olympic Peninsula. Take that, Transylvania.

2) Blades of Glory: Many of the funniest scenes in Will Ferrell’s outrageous figure-skating spoof were shot in Montréal, including at Habitat 67 and the Montréal Olympic Stadium.

3) Brokeback Mountain:In Ang Lee’s Oscar-winning, stereotype-shattering, hugely poignant love story between two cowboys, Calgary and Alberta’s majestic Rocky Mountains stand in for Wyoming.

4) Taking Lives: This suspense thriller starring Angelina Jolie was not only shot in Montréal, the film’s plot was set there, too.

5) Capote: This Oscar-winning biopic starring the late Philip Seymour Hoffman was shot in and around Winnipeg largely due to the Manitoban capital’s likeness to the Kansas heartland, where much of the movie is set.  

6) The Grey: This chilling wilderness survival epic, starring grizzled heartthrob Liam Neeson, was filmed in and around Edmonton, Smithers, Vancouverand Whistler.

7) Titanic:When Canadian-born auteur James Cameron needed to film the water scenes for his blockbuster, he chose the waters off Halifax, NS, a port steeped in maritime history. The nearby cemetery has also drawn visitors due to a number of Titanic victims being buried there.

8) The Incredible Hulk: AsCanada’s largest city and home to countless Hollywood productions, Toronto was more than ready for its close-up as the stand-in for New York City in this superhero sequel.

9) My Big Fat Greek Wedding: Toronto also masqueraded as Chicago inactress Nia Vardalos’ 2002 romantic comedy hit. The city’s Greektown along Danforth Avenue was the setting for many memorable scenes, while Ryerson University and Jarvis Collegiate Institute made cameo appearances.

10) Inception: In this mind-bending 2010 science-fiction hit about dream stealers directed by “The Dark Knight’s”Christopher Nolan and starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Canada’s own Ellen Page, Alberta’s Kananaskis Country doubles as one of the film’s dream landscapes.

Looking for more visual inspiration from Canada? Browse our Brand Canada Library for thousands of images and videos from all over Canada.

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