From big house to movie set.
Kingston Penitentiary is expected to play a starring role in future movies and television series. The mothballed prison is already a popular tourist attraction, but officials believe there’s also room to use the 19th century prison as a movie backdrop. Now, a trio of partners wants the Limestone City to shine even more brightly and draw in more production.
Alex Jansen with the Kingston Film Office says things have yet to be finalized.
“You’ve got the city in talks with Corrections Canada, really being driven through St. Lawrence Parks Commission in order to be able to start opening up filming and especially filming at the Kingston Pen,” Jansen said.
WATCH: Kingston city council to vote on continuing Penitentiary tours in 2019
Jansen says the uniqueness of the King Street location is huge, with what he calls amazing potential. Geoff Waycik, historic sites director with the St. Lawrence Parks Commission — another of the partners in the venture — says opening up the landmark to production has and will bring plenty of interest.
“I’d like to list off a bunch of names, but we’ve had everything from really small, university project-type things to small film crews to the big blockbuster Hollywood productions that want to take the whole site for a month,” Waycik said. “We’ve had all kinds.”
For those wondering, Waycik says the ideal user wouldn’t shut down the site or interfere with the Kingston Penitentiary’s popular tours.