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TV Pilot industry booming in Vancouver

Click to play video: 'Vancouver home to a number of TV pilot productions'
Vancouver home to a number of TV pilot productions
It's been a good year in our city for film production. Vancouver is now home to more drama pilot productions than New York – Aug 5, 2016

A new report from California shows it’s been a good year for TV pilot production in Vancouver.

The city ranks third in North America with 25 pilots being shot in the city during the 2015-2016 cycle.

That is an 67 per cent increase from the prior cycle, when 16 pilots were filmed.

“We have the crews, we have the dollar, and we have competitive tax credits we are seeing a big boom in the pilot season here,” said Nancy Mott with Vancouver Economic Commission.

READ MORE: B.C. cuts film, TV tax credit 5 per cent

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The booming business is also good news for local actors like Elysia Rotaru, who says she’s never been busier.

“Pretty much within a week I’d like to say I go out and see casting maybe three times to four times, and that’s dispersed between film and TV and voice over,” Rotaru said.

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Pilots are especially important for local actors because if the project gets the green light, it could mean years of steady work.

And it could also lead to bigger projects.

“One of my peers, Daniel Bacon, he was in Big Friendly Giant,” said Rotaru. “Another colleague of mine Taylor Hickson, a new comer into town, she just killed it in Deadpool and is staring the show aftermath.”

READ MORE: Okanagan’s film industry anticipated to grow

“So it’s great to see that local talent is also being put forth for those projects and being cast.”

Then there’s players like Netflix, which is increasingly is producing content exclusively for streaming.

Skydance Media, which has a long-term production deal with Netflix, is taking over an old newspaper printing facility in Surrey and turning into a giant warehouse-like studio. It expects to employ up to 400 people.

“It just shows they have a commitment to the city, we can talk about tax credits, and we can talk about the dollar, but without the crews and the infrastructure and the investments you know, not every city can be a film location,” said Mott.

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