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Motion Picture

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Loretta Todd, MONKEY BEACH


Darren Hull

As Canada’s largest and North America’s third-largest centre for motion picture production in North America, British Columbia is proud of its international reputation and proven track record for providing exceptional value for the producer’s dollar. With a full spectrum of world-class talent, services and facilities from pre-production to post-production, clients return to B.C. to complete their projects on time and on budget.

Although B.C. has a long history of servicing foreign production, local producers are increasing their expertise and developing partnerships across the globe. B.C. production companies have extensive production credits demonstrating high quality production work across a diverse range of projects. B.C. producers are nurturing diverse production relationships, encompassing everything from straightforward co-financing arrangements, in which one partner provides partial investment while the other undertakes the actual production, to more complex arrangements that involve joint creative control over projects through co-production agreements.

Offering close proximity and sharing the same time zone as Los Angeles,  experienced creative and technical talent, partnerships with B.C. producers, world class infrastructure (studios, suppliers, data pipelines) and award winning expertise in digital animation, VFX and post-production, B.C. is truly a full service production centre. See a list of motion picture companies and related businesses in Creative BC’s Knowledge Hub. Offering a World of Looks with a diversity of locations found nowhere else in Canada, and highly competitive Provincial and Federal tax credits, British Columbia is home to hundreds of film and television projects each year.

January 2023: Most Current Real-Time Industry Insights

Production of Original Motion Picture Storytelling Content – Creative BC Insights
Based on real-time tax credit application information available in January 2023, early Creative BC insights project that 2022 production spending on original storytelling content in B.C. will be over the $3.5B mark in B.C. Final figures are anticipated to be steady if slightly above 2021 numbers for original film and television production activity.

It is too early to estimate the total count of productions in 2022 as the last tax credit application deadlines for some types of applications (upon which counts are based) do not close until 2023. However, the 2022 production count continues based on applications and is tracking to be similar with last year’s figures of 500 productions in 2021 in British Columbia.

Overview of the Screen Sector in Canada – Canadian Media Producers Association Insights (CMPA)
The annual Profile Report provides deep research into the breakdown of activity within Canada’s film and television production industry. Based on fiscal year 2020/21, the Profile 2021 report shows that B.C.’s share of total production activity in the country is 36%, maintaining its track record as Canada’s largest and North America’s third-largest production hub.

The Film and Television Industry’s Broader Economic Footprint – Vancouver Economic Commission Insights (VEC)
The broader footprint of B.C.’s motion picture industry is measured annually by our partners at the Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC). In 2021 VEC reported $4.8B based on WorkSafeBC data, reflecting the industry’s additional 20% in economic impacts beyond Creative BC’s knowledge of spending derived from the production of original storytelling content. This additional impact includes a combination of commercial advertising, some music videos and sound recording, and some work performed outside of film and tv for video games, etc. that may be captured through VEC’s broader methodology.

Bringing Public Datasets into our Story for Trends and Comparability
Creative BC also brings public datasets from Statistics Canada into its story of all industries within the creative sector in B.C. through CIERA, the Creative Industries Economic Results Assessment tool. This annual measure is entirely based on public information and allows for comparability across the industries we represent. CIERA™ 2021 indicators show 40,517 Total Jobs (traditional Full-Time & Equivalent) and up to 88,000 people when counting freelancers. See year-over-year trends in the CIERA™ 2021 Tables section of this page on the Creative BC website.

Sustainability: Looking Beyond to Ensure Industry’s Positive Social and Environmental Impacts 
Learn more about B.C.’s motion picture industry initiatives to ensure a sustainable film and television sector for the province.

1. Reel Green™ is Canada’s climate action catalyst – a leader in sustainable production strategy and action, with well over 20+ industry funders, 30+ national partners, and 10+ committees working on specific areas of action including Industry Best Practices, Clean Energy, and the Circular Economy for film. The Reel Green™ Lead sits within the provincial film commission at Creative BC, providing committed services and support to help Reel Green and its industry Advisory Committee advance environmental best practices in film and television.

2. Creative Pathways™ is Canada’s first motion picture industry workforce development solution—an online hub that maps a clear pathway into industry. The hub is built for career-seekers by the province’s Motion Picture Production Industry Association and Creative BC with the role of Creative Pathways Lead established within the provincial film commission at Creative BC. The Lead provides committed services and support to help industry participate and expand its practices that advance toward equity, inclusion and diversity in its workforce.

3. Creative Equity Roadmap™ is a resource for B.C.’s motion picture industry to advance Justice, Equity, Decolonization, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDDI) in the motion picture industry and beyond it, into B.C.’s broader creative industries. The framework includes development “lanes” for the individual, the organization, and the industry, as well as “checkpoints” – knowledge, shared goals, and trainings – that can be accessed by anyone seeking to advance JEDDI practices.

Industry Impacts: CIERA 2021

It’s important to note that this industry activity generates a portion of the additional incremental total GDP attributed to the Multi-Creative Industry Services segment of the creative industries overall.

Total GDP in B.C.

People when est. freelancers are counted

Direct Output in B.C.

Total Jobs Traditional FT + Equivalent

Read More: Understanding CIERA™
The Creative Industries Economic Results Assessment (CIERA), designed by Creative BC for government and industry, is a milestone that offers new insight based on public datasets to measure the industry. Creative BC tax credit insights complement CIERA™’s Total GDP and Direct Output indicators to increase understanding of the sector.
  • CIERA 2021 shows that $2.404B Total GDP in value was added to B.C.’s economy in the year 2021 by the motion picture industry.
    • Based on Statistics Canada’s most recent data for 2020, and statisticians’ expert estimates for one additional year to 2021, CIERA‘s Total GDP indicator is validated and includes direct, indirect, and induced contributions to B.C.’s economy. Importantly, GDP measures only worker pay and profits resulting from industry’s activities, whereas previously “total” production spending had been the measure, similar to Output, and figures included industry spending on supplies and services in addition to worker pay and profits.
  • CIERA also offers Output indicators (similar to total spend) that do include insights to industry spending on supplies and services, in addition to worker pay and profits that are counted by GDP. Showing $3.25B Direct Output for the same year.
  • CIERA figures exclude, or are net of, any government subsidies received by the industry.
While the industry is largely comprised of freelance workers, and this type of work remains difficult for government and industry to measure:
  • sound collective industry insights show up to 88,000 British Columbians people in the industry (Creative BC estimates bring together CIERA™ and the CMPA’s Profile Report for these estimates).
  • CIERA™ 2021 indicates 25,329 Direct Jobs and 40,517 Total Traditional FT and Equivalent Jobs when Indirect and Induced are included.

Recent Feature Film Projects: Deadpool, War for the Planet of the Apes, Tomorrowland, Godzilla, Seventh Son, Elysium, Superman: Man of Steel, Mission Impossible 4, Caesar: Rise of the Apes, 2012, The Grey, Twilight Saga: New Moon, Eclipse and Breaking Dawn, and Tron: Legacy.

Recent TV Series Projects: Once Upon a Time, The Flash, Supernatural, Continuum, Motive, Bates Motel, Arrow, Falling Skies, The Killing, The Tomorrow People and Wayward Pines.

The Motion Picture Industry Mapped Across the Sector Value Chain

Some of the “culture industries” as defined by Statistics Canada contribute to more than one creative industry, therefore these NAICS cannot easily be attributed to a single creative industry, nor can their business activities be proportionally allocated. In these cases, their economic contributions have been aggregated into CIERA‘s Multi-Creative Industry figures. Outlined bullets below are Multi-Creative Industry Services that do contribute to some extent to this value chain. See Multi-Creative Industry Services impacts.

See full annual CIERA™ tables and multiple years of data here.

Research + Reports

Recent industry insights and impacts of B.C.’s creative industries.


CIERA™ | Creative Industries Economic Results Assessment

Bringing public datasets into our story


View Creative BC funding programs


A Full-Service Motion Picture Hub


British Columbia is an international force in animation. Millions of people across the world are avid fans of popular animated series that are conceived, developed and produced in British Columbia. Merging technology and imagination, B.C.’s designers, writers, animators and directors transform an infinite variety of visualizations into art forms that showcase a global competence in innovative digital and creative content. Recognized by many prestigious awards and nominations, B.C.’s animation companies are breaking out some of the most prolific productions of computer animation for television and direct-to-video, long-form CGI for feature films, commercials and interactive entertainment.

Commercial Advertising

Commercial production is a busy segment of B.C.’s production industry and B.C. professionals in all areas of the television commercial production industry are highly skilled and experienced.  B. .commercial advertising producers provide complete production services to domestic and foreign agency and producer clients shooting projects in British Columbia.

Learn more about commercial advertising via the Commercial Production Association of Western Canada.

Visual Effects

B.C.’s digital and post community have some of the most creative and talented minds in the world. Building on the success of British Columbia’s film and television industry, it’s no surprise that digital animation and visual effects have flourished here as well.  In addition to extensive knowledge and creative and technical expertise, our artists, technologists, supervisors and producers have the critical skills needed to consistently produce world class work.

Learn more through the Animation + VFX Alliance 

Live Action

The scale and longevity of motion picture production in British Columbia place it at the forefront of industry evolution as one of the world’s most groundbreaking jurisdictions. B.C.’s studio infrastructure alone delivers state-of-the-art facilities among the largest in North America. Demanding special effects sequences, and set builds that are challenging to accommodate because of sheer size are made possible by an array of technical support, and built-ins designed to service and streamline the production process. B.C. production equipment suppliers and industry service providers ensure the highest level of support and the most extensive inventory of leading edge well-maintained accessible and professional equipment in Canada.

Learn more through MPPIA, the Motion Picture Production Industry Association of British Columbia and Canadian Media Producers Association – BC Producers Branch 

Post Production

B.C. post-production houses and visual effects facilities have provided services to thousands of film and television projects and received dozens of accolades including Oscar and Emmy nominations, in addition to numerous Genie, Gemini and Leo awards. With features like Godzilla, The Great Gatsby, Elysium, Seventh Son, Man of Steel, Prometheus and Life of Pi as well as popular television shows such as Once Upon a Time, Supernatural, Bates Motel and Arrow, B.C.’s post-production and visual effects sector offers a wealth of world class talent and creative digital artists, and a track record that stands behind them.

Learn more through the Vancouver Post Alliance.



Logos and brand guidelines - Telefilm Canada

Telefilm is dedicated to the cultural, commercial and industrial success of Canada’s audiovisual industry. Through its various funding and promotion programs, Telefilm supports dynamic companies and creative talent here at home and around the world.

Canada Media Fund

Canada Media Fund - Prime Time :

The Canada Media Fund fosters, develops, finances and promotes the production of Canadian content and applications for all audiovisual media platforms.


TELUS STORYHIVE - National Screen Institute - Canada (NSI)

STORYHIVE offers production grants, training and distribution opportunities for creators in BC and Alberta. We tell stories, create art and make careers happen.

Indigenous Screen Office

Employment Opportunities with Indigenous Screen Office (IS0) - Métis Nation  of Ontario

The Indigenous Screen Office‘s mission is to support and develop Indigenous screen storytellers and Indigenous stories on screens and increase representation of Indigenous peoples throughout the screen industries in Canada.

Black Screen Office

Black Screen Office | Bureau de l'écran des Noirs

The Black Screen Office supports the development, production and distribution of Canadian Black screen content around the globe. We are committed to ensuring that Black Canadians are represented at all levels throughout the screen industries.

National Screen Institute

NSI's history - National Screen Institute - Canada (NSI)

National Screen Institute is a not-for-profit training organization that supports creators from across Canada to tell unforgettable stories through industry-informed training and mentoring in film, television, and digital media.

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