OUR LOCAL FILM SCENE
The Nelson and Kootenay Lake region encompasses inland rainforests, epic outdoor activities, quaint communities, a glacier-fed lake and a place filled with artisans and movie makers. These characteristics all blended together to create a destination well-suited for making films - from shooting to production and viewing.
ROXANNE (1987) AND MORE HOLLYWOOD FILMS
Nelson and the surrounding region are backdrops to several notable Hollywood films, including the classic 1987 Steve Martin comedy, Roxanne. Based loosely on the tale of Cyrano de Bergerac, Roxanne follows the long-nosed fire chief "C.D. Bales" (Steve Martin) in his courtship of astronomer Roxanne (Daryl Hannah). The Nelson Firehall is prominently featured in the film, as is Baker Street, Jackson's Hole ("Dixies" in the film), and the entrance to The Nelson Museum, Archives & Gallery which served as the entrance to the local nightclub. Many locals were involved with the film and most people who lived in Nelson at the time it was filmed have a “Roxanne story” or two about running into Steve Martin or Daryl Hannah on Baker Street. You can take yourself on a self-guided Roxanne tour and rent the movie at Reo's, our local video store, to relive the sights.
The 2016 mystery/thriller film The Tall Man starring Jessica Biel was filmed around Ymir and Nelson, with various familiar sights, including the Nelson Canadian Pacific Railway Station making it into the film. Heritage buildings in Ymir and stretches of highway, including the Taghum bridge and a strip of highway outside Kokanee Creek Park are all recognizable.
Parts of the American legal drama film Snow Falling On Cedars (1999) starring Ethan Hawke were filmed in Nelson and Kaslo.
Action film company Freeride Entertainment has been filming in the region (and around the world) since the 1990s.
Our region draws some of the best freeskiers on the planet—and so, understandably, some of the best ski films of the past decade have been filmed here. Segments from Sherpas Cinema's All.I.Can. and most of Powder Magazine's 2014 Film of the Year Valhalla were shot here. Our region was also featured in Salomon's Dream Trip 2, Tight Loose by Teton Gravity Research, and Return to Sendr' by Matchstick Productions.
Sherpas Cinema later teamed up with The North Face to produce the short film Imagination, dedicated to the legacy of freeskier JP Auclair. A child imagines a skier following alongside a car, jumping off handrails, the roofs of houses, and a mural of JP Auclair's iconic bird design.
LOCALLY MADE FILMS
Nelson filmmaker Amy Bohigian explores the region's history through the personal stories of individuals who have lived in the Kootenays over the past century in Dreamers and Dissidents. Amy Bohigian illustrates the issues facing modern-day Nelson in the documentary Only in Nelson, which follows a Nelson municipal election and its candidates in 2016.
For many years the Deconstructing Dinner Film Festival ran annually in Nelson, showing food documentaries from around the world.
Nelson's Civic Theatre is a 306-seat historical theatre, first opened in 1935 as a live venue and later converted into a film theatre. The renovated Civic Theatre shows a diverse range of movies, from local projects to indie movies and blockbuster Hollywood offerings.
Reo's Video is a cornerstone entity of the city's arts and culture scene, offering films from around the world through its vast, rare, and historical collection.
FILM PRODUCTION IN THE KOOTENAYS
The Kootenay Regional Film Commissioner can help you with permits, locations, crew and other filming needs in our region.
We also have the Kootenay Film Based Industry which brings together local filmers, actors, writers, events, and community participation.