X Files
Battlestar Galactica

Stargates series
Outer Limits
What do all of those shows have in common?
I’m sure you can think of a few, but wait there’s more, perhaps something similar to…
X-Men series
Fantastic Four series
I Robot
The Neverending Story
Blade series
Twilight series (well most of it)
Night at the Museum
Rocky IV
Aliens vs Predator
Ok ok… I know you all get it by now. All of these films and TV shows have been filmed in beautiful British Columbia. As a fan girl I get an immense amount of pride spotting BC and especially Vancouver landmarks in the movies so many people love.
Quite recently I watched the last bit of “Neverending Story” and for the first time fully realized that the shot was coming in from North Vancouver
My heart was very very happy indeed.
It goes beyond the little things of noticing a specific location in a movie or TV show that you watch. It’s the personal interactions you have with the filming. One of my favourite memories is watching a protest scene with a fireball at the end. The office I was sitting in was about a block away (on the 11th floor of the building below on the left side) but all day I could hear.
Photo by me – the monument is important
“Rah rah rah”
Looking out the window I see people shaking signs
and fists in the air in a very organized manner
“Rah rah rah”
Wooooooooosh – Big fireball shooting up into the sky
Exciting to see the first time, and as the day went on the fireball got bigger and bigger and bigger. I could quite literally feel the heat from it if I faced the windows. I was so excited. I knew it was for the most recent X-Men after a quick Google search and could not wait to see it on film. I have to admit I was a bit let down once I realized how little of that fireball we actually got to see, but I can’t help but smile. I saw that being filmed! I was there (sorta); I got to see what was happening!
Another favourite moment was when I was watching X-Files: I Want to Believe. That pivotal scene with Mulder and Scully in bed together, I literally sat up and went “Woah!” My curtains were the same material as their blanket, yeah that’s right those are my curtains in the middle image! Guess the set designers went shopping at the Army & Navy like I did.

I know – cool right?

I will admit I have been lazy with filming locations. If I had really wanted to (and with a vehicle rather than a bus pass) I could stake out many locations of films and television series alike. In fact quite recently I was taking our local rapid transit, Skytrain, over what I’m sure is a Smallville lot twice a day. And there are always notices in the local paper about what is filming around town. My friend just told me other day that he saw “Zane” from Eureka by his work. I saw a bunch of “Hellcats” by Canada Place while having appys with my mom and sister.
Sometimes it’s really obvious that what I’m watching was filmed locally. Especially when you see the same faces over and over again. Some sort of Canadian content law like we have on the radio? It’s fun though! And I doubt that I would feel the same way if I were living in NYC or LA where it’s commonplace as well. I think the difference is that Vancouver is made up to appear like all these other cities. To be able to pick out that the Golden Gate Bridge most think they are seeing, is actually the Lions Gate Bridge creates a feeling of pride to live in this beautiful city.
photo by me – Lions Gate Bridge
A few more of my fan-girl moments in brief:
An episode of Smallville where they didn’t bother to change the street sign for Burrard St. downtown.
The local buses I have spotted more than once on Fringe, particularly when they are meeting in front of this monument and the camera is spinning around the actors. That monument is actually right in front of the office building I was watching the X-Men scene from, you can see it in the photo.
Seeing the house from one of my favourite Outer Limits episodes, The SpiderKings, when leaving Horseshoe Bay on BC Ferries
An old friend from high school worked on the special effects make-up for Freddy vs Jason – he said “doing Freddy Krueger’s make-up was one of the best moments in my life”
Kevin Durand who was in X-Men Origins used to frequent the internet café I worked at, he’s such a sweetheart
Seeing the “NYC” subway stop that was recently in a Fringe episode. When I saw it wandering around downtown I didn’t know it would be on one of my favourite shows, then again it’s probably been used a lot.
And last but most definitely not least, watching the Winchester brothers’ race in a soapbox derby. The screen the camera is aiming at in the beginning of the video was where I was sitting, on the opposite side from the cameraman, so while I didn’t get to see them coming down the road I got a close up view of them on the screen! I was too excited to take pics of my own wanting to see those gorgeous demon hunters!

The list that I mentioned at the beginning is an incredibly small portion of all the movies and TV shows, which have been filmed in and around Vancouver. No matter what genre you’re interested in there’s sure to be some ‘local’ connection for a Vancouverite. Only one aspect of Vancouver being a “Geek Girl’s Mecca” – more to come!