They’re filming a movie in our building! When I got home from the gym yesterday morning I could barely get in the front door of our condo. The Ashdown Warehouse was serving as a set for a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation movie about political leader Jack Layton . I asked some of the crew about the film and they told me the foyer, front steps and two suites in our condo were being used in the movie. They were very apologetic about any inconvenience caused to the tenants and were extremely polite and courteous.
Later in the day when I left the condo to buy groceries I saw tons of equipment at the end of our hallway. Turns out the two condos where interior scenes were being shot were on our floor. A film crew member I rode down with in the elevator told me one condo was being used for the livingroom of Jack Layton and his wife Olivia Chow’s home, and another condo was where the bedroom scenes would be shot. When I got back from the grocery store, I rode up in the elevator with a filming assistant carrying Chinese take-out food in a bag. Turns out it was being used in the next scene they were filming.
It took most of the day for the them to do the shooting. When I was taking the trash out in the late afternoon, Sook-Yin-Lee the woman who plays Olivia Chow and an older Asian woman who I assume must be playing Olivia’s mother, came out of an apartment near ours with a make-up artist following behind with bags full of cosmetics.
I couldn’t believe how many people and trucks and pieces of equipment it took to film a few scenes from a movie. A whole block of the street adjacent to our front entry was closed off for movie vehicles and personnel. One of the crew told me they were moving on to Selkirk, Manitoba to continue filming.
I know that Winnipeg has become a popular spot for making movies, especially in the Exchange District where so many historical buildings have been preserved. I’ve seen film crews in action before, but had never noticed any on our street. It was pretty exciting! Although we had to use the back doors for a while during the day, the inconvenience was worth it just knowing the place where you live was being used as a movie set. I can hardly wait to see the film when it comes out!